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New health benefits of EVOO in patients with type 1 diabetes

New health benefits of EVOO in patients with type 1 diabetes

2016/22/02 - New study by researchers of Universita' degli Studi di Napoli Federico II (Italy) shows that seasoning the food with extra virgin olive oil also reduces the glycaemic peak after a meal in people with type 1 diabetes.

Extra virgin olive oil is a key feature of the Mediterranean diet and has already shown having beneficial effects on other cardiovascular risk factors, such as plasma lipids, insulin resistance, blood pressure and fatty liver. Now, a new study by researchers of Universita' degli Studi di Napoli Federico II (Italy) shows that seasoning the food with extra virgin olive oil also reduces the glycaemic peak after a meal in people with type 1 diabetes, an effect that was not observed when butter was used as a condiment instead.

This finding, as stated by researcher Angela A. Rivellese, professor of Dietary Applied Sciences of the Clinical Medicine and Surgery Department of the Universita' degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, comes from the scientific rigor of the randomized controlled design merged with the use of innovative technologies. The integrated systems of insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitoring and the real-life setting of the study that was performed at patients’ home allow an immediate translation of the experimental data in every-day clinical decisions. In fact, people with type 1 diabetes should take into account the combination of the effects of carbohydrate foods and type of fat information for timing and dose of prandial insulin administration. Limiting the postprandial blood sugar spikes will not only contribute to the prevention of chronic diabetes complications but also to the improvement of quality of life of people with diabetes. This will be even truer, when these findings, obtained in an acute study, will be verified on a chronic basis.

The beneficial effects of extra virgin olive oil observed in this study, could be related as well as its content in monounsaturated fat, also to other bioactive compounds, such as polyphenols, substances with high antioxidant power. On the other hand, we must not forget that the extra virgin olive oil is a fat and, therefore, is rich in calories. Therefore, the amount to be used, both in people with diabetes and in the general population, must always be within a balanced overall calorie intake. However, this new information on olive oil, in addition to its previously shown beneficial health effects could be a further motivation to extend its use worldwide.

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