Type 2 diabetes is the body’s inability to use the insulin produced efficiently. The chronic disease causes frequent urination, fatigue, slow healing wounds, constant thirst or hunger, blurred vision, or no symptoms at all.
Treatment for type 2 diabetes usually involves medication, insulin therapy, exercise, and diet.
New research published in Clinical Nutrition has found that consuming sardines can prevent the early onset of type 2 diabetes in individuals exhibiting prediabetic (blood glucose levels between 100-124 mg/dL.) symptoms.
The new research was conducted by researcher Diana Diaz- Rizzolo Ph.D. and colleagues from the Hospital Clinic of Barcelona, Spain.
When & How to Consume Sardines?
The study involved two groups of 76 participants each. All participants were above the age of 65 years with prediabetes. In order to identify and evaluate the outcome, the researchers provided one group with recipes of highly nutritious meal plans without sardines and recipes with sardines for another group.
The individuals consumed approximately 200gms of canned sardines dipped in olive oil every week in two servings of 100gms each. Researchers had also requested them to consume the whole sardine inclusive of bones since they are rich in Vitamin C and calcium.
Can Sardines Prevent Type 2 Diabetes?
A year later, the researchers examined the participants from both the groups based on a Finnish Diabetes Score (FINDRISC) and concluded that participants who consumed a highly nutritious diet had reduced their chances of developing type 2 diabetes from 27% to 22% while participants who consumed whole sardines exhibited a greater reduction from 37% to 8%.
Apart from reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, a canned sardine diet also had the following benefits:
- Sardines are one of the safest foods which are easily available at a reasonable price
- Taurine concentrations in sardines also reduced the systolic and diastolic blood pressure level considerably
- Participants who consumed sardines also exhibited an increase in healthy cholesterol (HDL)
- Homeostatic Model Assessment for Insulin Resistance showed that insulin resistance had reduced substantially
- Other benefits like a sharp increase in the body’s glucose regulation hormones and a decrease in triglycerides proteins were also identified.
Benefits Found in Both Groups
A nutritious diet is not less important than a sardine diet with regards to other benefits like:
- Significant reduction in glucose concentration was identified in both groups
- Apart from promoting healthy cholesterol HDL, the nutritious diet showed a noticeable decrease in bad cholesterol
- Despite any physical exercise, both groups showed a healthy BMI index and visibly healthy hip and waist circumference.
The sardine diet practice is still under study due to its effect on multiple biological processes.