There is a lot of research ongoing to discover all the mysteries of the gut. One area of research, although in its early stages, is looking at how the gut “tastes” different types of foods. A new study published in the journal, Diabetes, has found that those suffering from Diabetes Type II may have defective sweet tasting receptors in their gut. These receptors help regulate glucose uptake into the blood steam. However, in Diabetics, there are abnormalities in these receptors causing a more rapid glucose uptake and in greater quantities. Researchers are curious as to how artificial sweeteners may play a role. The study observes this occurring in the first 30 minutes after ingestion of the food. More research is need to see what happens during the full digestion process.
Does the good bacteria in our gut play a role in regulating or protecting our gut taste receptors? It is too soon to say for sure, but the evidence is pointing in that direction. Research has shown that fermented foods and probiotics help regulate our glucose metabolism. Most of these studies have been animal studies. However, currently there is a human research trial to determine the effects of probiotic supplementation for Type II Diabetics. Researchers expect that the probiotics will produce beneficial changes in gut flora which will reduce the systemic inflammation, alter systemic endotoxin levels produced by bad bacteria and, as such, reduce the systemic inflammatory response observed in T2DM subjects and provide beneficial results for blood glucose levels.
In the meantime, we can all practice a course of prevention by increasing our intake of fermented foods and if already diagnosed as a Diabetic, then adding them to diet would be a good idea.
- Disordered control of intestinal sweet taste receptor expression and glucose absorption in type 2 diabetes, Young RL et al, Nerve-Gut Research Laboratory, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia. Diabetes. 2013 Oct;62(10):3532-41. doi: 10.2337/db13-0581. Epub 2013 Jun 12.
- Intestinal beneficial effects of kefir-supplemented diet in rats, Elena Urdaneta et al, Department of Enviromental Sciences, Universidad Pública de Navarra Arrosadia Campus, 31006 Pamplona (Navarre), Spain, Received 8 January 2007; revised 17 July 2007; accepted 3 August 2007
- Beneficial metabolic effects of a probiotic via butyrate induced GLP-1 secretion, Hariom Yadav, et al, The Journal of Biologial chemistry July, 2013.
- Effects of probiotics in patients with diabetes mellitus type 2: study protocol for a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, Majed et al, Trials. 2013; 14: 195. Published online 2013 July 4. doi: 10.1186/1745-6215-14-195