Grape Extracts Could Lower Risk of Metabolic Syndrome

Certain compounds found in grapes may have a protective influence against metabolic syndrome, according to research published in Diabetes.

Although a high-sugar fruit, grapes contain polyphenols – natural micronutrients that appear to play a role in disease prevention.

Researchers from Rutgers University examined how gut microbiota changed when mice were given 1-percent Concord grape polyphenols while also eating a high-fat diet.

Improved metabolic outcomes

Results showed that grape polyphenols helped to offset the effects of the high-fat diet, curbing weight gain, reducing serum inflammatory markers and also increasing the expression of genes that limit triglyceride storage.

A study published in Diabetes Care in 2012 found that grape polyphenols were also effective in preventing fructose-induced oxidative stress and insulin resistance in relatives of people with type 2 diabetes.

Based on the current study, researchers say that gut microbiota might be the "missing link" when it comes to how dietary polyphenols are digested – and what role they may play in metabolic health.

"These data suggest that [grape polyphenols] act in the intestine to modify gut microbial community structure, resulting in lower intestinal and systemic inflammation and improved metabolic outcomes," the researchers wrote.

Source: Endocrinology Advisor

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