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Flavours & Ingredients 05.09.2019

Fig extract for healthy blood sugar levels

A recently published human study from the University of Sydney, Australia, evaluated the efficacy of ABAlife on glucose metabolism blood parameters. The abscisic acid (ABA) standardized fig extract has been shown to improve glucose tolerance, assist insulin release and may help to lower post-prandial blood glucose levels, besides having anti-inflammatory and adaptogen properties too.

Fig extract for healthy blood sugar levels
Green figs (Photo: Euromed)

Euromed’s natural ingredient ABAlife shows beneficial effects on glucose metabolism

A recently published human study from the University of Sydney, Australia, evaluated the efficacy of ABAlife on glucose metabolism blood parameters1. The abscisic acid (ABA) standardized fig extract has been shown to improve glucose tolerance, assist insulin release and may help to lower post-prandial blood glucose levels, besides having anti-inflammatory and adaptogen properties too2. ABAlife is a patented extract from Euromed, a leading manufacturer of therapeutic botanical extracts, and available for dietary supplements.

In the randomized, double-blind crossover study, the researchers investigated the effects of two different ABA doses in fig extracts (100 mg and 200 mg) on post-prandial glucose and insulin responses in healthy subjects. Figs have one of the highest ABA concentrations found in nature. A 200 mg dose of ABAlife added to a glucose drink lowered overall blood glucose and insulin levels and peaks between 30 and 120 minutes post-dose, and significantly improved glycemic index (GI) levels compared with a reference glucose solution alone. The GI indicates how fast and efficiently the body can metabolize a carbohydrate meal.

The lower dosage was also effective on GI but did not reach statistical significance. Both dosages, however, were able to significantly lower the post-prandial insulinemic index (II), which shows how much insulin the body releases in response to a meal. The data displays a clear dose-response reduction of GI and II.

This initial study suggests that ABAlife may be a beneficial dietary supplement in terms of helping to maintain healthy blood sugar levels and an adjunctive treatment for chronic metabolic disorders such as prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. According to the International Diabetes Federation, 66 million people in Europe have diabetes. Prevalence is rising among all age groups, mostly owing to increases in lifestyle-related risk factors such as unhealthy diets and physical inactivity. Sugar boosts the level of glucose in the blood and causes the pancreas to release insulin. Higher insulin levels lead to the storage of dietary calories as fat, which can result in overweight and obesity – both risk factors for diabetes. A second, larger acute clinical trial is currently ongoing, and a chronic administration study will start next year.

1ABAlife is a whole fruit extract that’s produced from figs according to the highest quality standards of Euromed and purified using a carefully controlled process to achieve a high, standardized ABA content. The ingredient delivers the scientifically proven health benefits of ABA while avoiding the additional calories associated with eating figs.
2Atkinson FS et al.: Nutrients. Abscisic Acid Standardized Fig (Ficus carica) Extracts Ameliorate Postprandial Glycemic and Insulinemic Responses in Healthy Adults. 2019 Jul 31;11(8). pii: E1757.
Zocchi E, Hontecillas R, Leber A, et al. (2017) Abscisic Acid: A Novel Nutraceutical for Glycemic Control. Front. Nutr. 4:24. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2017.00024

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