Extra-virgin olive oil, a key element of the extremely praised Mediterranean diet, appears to have a variety of health benefits, including enhancing the dietary worth of foods when used for frying and decreasing cholesterol levels after meals compared to other types of fat. Now, a small new research study from Italy recommends that the oil might have another benefit: lowering after-meal blood sugar levels in individuals with Type 1 diabetes.
Olive Oil and Diabetes
To identify whether the quality of fat eaten with either high- or low-glycemic meals affects after-meal blood glucose levels, researchers from Federico II University in Naples took a look at 13 people with Type 1 diabetes who were using insulin pumps. The individuals were randomly appointed to a week of eating either 3 meals with a high glycemic index (the glycemic index ranks foods based on their effect on after-meal blood sugar levels, with high-glycemic foods raising levels the most) or 3 meals with a low glycemic index, followed by the alternate consuming prepare the next week.
The meals in each set contained similar amounts of carbohydrate, but differed in the type and amount of fat, varying from slim, to high in saturated fat (43 grams, or roughly 1.5 ounces, of butter), to high in monounsaturated fat (37 grams, or roughly 1.3 ounces, of extra-virgin olive oil). The topics used continuous glucose screens throughout the study period.
The scientists discovered no substantial distinctions in after-meal blood glucose levels based upon fat amount and type for the low-glycemic meals. For high-glycemic meals, nevertheless, after-meal glucose levels rose considerably more slowly following meals consisting of extra-virgin olive oil compared to those that were low-fat or consisted of butter, being lowered by approximately 50% over the three-hour period after the meals.
“By integrating carbs with extra-virgin olive oil as the fat of choice instead of butter, patients can assist limit carbohydrate excursion,” stated Martin J. Abrahamson, MD, who was not involved with the research, in an email to Reuters Health. And limiting these after-meal spikes can not just help reduce the risk of diabetes complications, however improve lifestyle, the researchers keep in mind.
However, they are quick to point out that, “We have to keep in mind that extra-virgin olive oil is a fat, and is, for that reason, abundant in calories. It has to be used with a well balanced general calorie intake.”