Categories: Health

Type 2 Diabetes Linked to Prebiotics

Type 2 diabetes linked to deficient gut probiotics.

Researchers have found that the link between a fiberous prebiotics diet and type 2 diabetes is determined by our gut bacteria and a condition called dysbiosis.

International study on diabetes

The researchers, from Rome’s University La Sapienza, conducted a 21-day study with type-2 diabetic patients along with four other national research centers. These were in Italy, China, Ghana and Cuba. These studies showed the macrobiotic diet significantly improved fasting glucose levels, glycemia values and lipid levels.

While the pooled data from the study showed dramatically improved glycemic indices among the four studies, the Italian researchers noticed something else. They found that the macrobiotic diet improved gut bacteria, determined through endotoxin testing, inflammation parameters and glucagon-like peptides.

These factors have been found in other research to consistently be improved through better probiotic colonization in the gut.

This is also consistent with findings from researchers at the Spanish National Research Council, which found metabolic disease and obesity are related to inflammation produced by dysbiosis.

Dysbiosis is the overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria.

The macrobiotic diet has been found to improve all of these factors, and researchers now believe those effects are related to the fact that the macrobiotic diet contains a number of prebiotics that feed our intestinal bacteria.

Macrobiotic diet improves glucose control and lipids

Research has also proven that a macrobiotic diet improves type 2 diabetes symptoms. It also improves cholesterol.

In 2009, researchers from Havana’s prestigious Finlay institute followed 16 type-2 diabetic patients for six months before and after giving them a macrobiotic diet prepared by macrobiotic diet experts.

The researchers found that the macrobiotic diet – rich in dietary fiber – significantly improved the lipid and glucose parameters of the patients. Their LDL-cholesterol levels dropped by 23% and their triglyceride levels dropped by 37%. Meanwhile their HDL-cholesterol levels increased by 98%.

Furthermore, all of the patients were able to discontinue their insulin treatment during the six months, and 75% discontinued all diabetes-related treatment (25% remained on glibenclamide only). Their glycemia levels dropped by 64% and their HbA1 levels dropped by 54%.

The special internationally-recognized macrobiotic diet, dubbed the Ma-Pi 2 Diet, is composed of 12% protein, 18% fat and 70% high density, complex plant-based carbohydrates.

It is the complex plant fibers that provided the prebiotic content. The Italian researchers conservatively recognized the link between the anti-diabetes diet with respect to our gut probiotic health from the accumulated research:

“Adding prebiotics to the diet may reduce inflammation, endotoxaemia and cytokine levels as well as improving insulin resistance and glucose tolerance.”

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Kim YA, Keogh JB, Clifton PM. Probiotics, prebiotics, synbiotics and insulin sensitivity. Nutr Res Rev. 2017 Oct 17:1-17. doi: 10.1017/S095442241700018X.

Fallucca F, Porrata C, Fallucca S, Pianesi M. Influence of diet on gut microbiota, inflammation and type 2 diabetes mellitus. First experience with macrobiotic Ma-Pi 2 diet. Diabetes Metab Res Rev. 2014 Mar;30(S1):48-54. doi: 10.1002/dmrr.2518.

Porrata-Maury C, Hernández-Triana M, Ruiz-Álvarez V, Díaz-Sánchez ME, Fallucca F, Bin W, Baba-Abubakari B, Pianesi M. Macrobiotic diet and type 2 diabetes mellitus: pooled analysis of short-term intervention studies. Diabetes Metab Res Rev. 2014 Mar;30(S1):55-66. doi: 10.1002/dmrr.2519.

Bekkering P, Jafri I, van Overveld FJ, Rijkers GT. The intricate association between gut microbiota and development of type 1, type 2 and type 3 diabetes. Expert Rev Clin Immunol. 2013 Nov;9(11):1031-41. doi: 10.1586/1744666X.2013.848793.

Esteve E, Ricart W, Fernández-Real JM. Gut microbiota interactions with obesity, insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes: did gut microbiote co-evolve with insulin resistance? Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2011 Sep;14(5):483-90. doi: 10.1097/MCO.0b013e328348c06d.

Sanz Y, Santacruz A, Gauffin P. Gut microbiota in obesity and metabolic disorders. Proc Nutr Soc. 2010 Aug;69(3):434-41. doi: 10.1017/S0029665110001813.

Porrata C, Sánchez J, Correa V, Abuín A, Hernández-Triana M, Dacosta-Calheiros RV, Díaz ME, Mirabal M, Cabrera E, Campa C, Pianesi M. Ma-pi 2 macrobiotic diet intervention in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus. MEDICC Rev. 2009 Oct;11(4):29-35.

Case Adams, PhD

Case Adams has a Ph.D. in Natural Health Sciences, is a California Naturopath and is Board Certified as an Alternative Medicine Practitioner, with clinical experience and diplomas in Aromatherapy, Bach Flower Remedies, Blood Chemistry, Clinical Nutritional Counseling, Homeopathy and Colon Hydrotherapy. He has authored 27 books and numerous articles on print and online magazines. Contact:

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