What happens when men with type 2 diabetes eat freeze-dried blueberries each day for 8 weeks?
This was the question of a 2020 double-blind, parallel-arm, randomized controlled trial - with 52 men who were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 intervention groups, one with blueberries, and one with placebo (Stote et al.).
And just for clarification, parallel-arm refers to the two intervention groups (placebo and blueberries), while double-blind means that participants and researchers did not know who receives the blueberries or the placebo until the end.
Let's move on: The men were chosen from a VA medical center in NY. The freeze-dried blueberries were in a powder form that the men mixed with water, 11grams in the morning and 11grams in the evening. They drank that with their meals.
The placebo was made with maltodextrin, fructose, artificial and natural flavoring, colorants (red and blue), citric acid and silica dioxide -- in other words, quite gross but tasted of course like sugary blueberries.
For the sake of comparison, 1 cup of regular blueberries is around 148 grams, and 1 cup of freeze-dried blueberries is around 26 grams. The men were given an equivalent of one cup of blueberries.
The men's diet remained the same (and was analyzed as well as part of the study).
I have to say - there is a lot of respect to the participants in the way their weight, hight, blood pressure etc. were taken. Although I would have liked to see these measurements and biological samples (blood etc) taken more than twice (beginning and end of study).
Blueberries were found to lower biomarkers for glycemic control.
This is good news for people who suffer with diabetes, a natural way to lower blood sugar - significant reduction of HbA1c (blood sugar test-hemoglobin A1C).
Also triglycerides concentrations were significantly lower. Other markers such as cholesterol, blood pressure, and body weight were not affected.
Enjoy the article, the study is elegant and straight forward. Article
suggested amount: 1 capsule of Blueberry Extract daily. One capsule is about 1 and 1/4 cups of blueberries.
- Stote, K. S., Wilson, M. M., Hallenbeck, D., Thomas, K., Rourke, J. M., Sweeney, M. I., ... & Gosmanov, A. R. (2020). Effect of blueberry consumption on cardiometabolic health parameters in men with type 2 diabetes: an 8-week, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. Current developments in nutrition, 4(4), nzaa030. Article
- Li, D., Zhang, Y., Liu, Y., Sun, R., & Xia, M. (2015). Purified anthocyanin supplementation reduces dyslipidemia, enhances antioxidant capacity, and prevents insulin resistance in diabetic patients. The Journal of nutrition, 145(4), 742-748.
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And blueberries also improve cognition:
Wang, Y., Haskell-Ramsay, C., Gallegos, J. L., & Lodge, J. K. (2022). Effects of chronic consumption of specific fruit (berries, cherries and citrus) on cognitive health: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 1-16.
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