Type 2 Diabetes: can mycoprotein help to manage blood sugar levels?

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One in 20 people worldwide has Type 2 Diabetes (T2D), with South Asians being more susceptible to the disease in comparison to Europeans. People with T2D have higher blood sugar levels than normal, which can increase the chances of developing long-term complications such as blindness, kidney disease, and heart failure. The first approach to managing blood sugar levels is by improving dietary intake.

Imperial BRC researchers are investigating whether mycoprotein, a food that is high in both dietary fibre and protein, and low in fat and calories, could be an effective food for regulating blood sugar levels and appetite in people with T2D. Mycoprotein is commercially available across Europe, North America and Asia under the brand name of “Quorn”, which makes it suitable and accessible to many people.

Professor Gary Frost, NIHR Imperial BRC Gut Health Theme Lead, Metabolic Medicine and Endocrinology Theme Principal Investigator, and Head of the Nutrition Section at Imperial College, said: “Mycoprotein has a unique food matrix called hyphae, which may act as a barrier for sugar absorption during digestion, therefore improving sugar levels in blood.”

This research will help to understand how blood sugar responses differ between people of South Asian and European descent with T2D, and will also highlight the importance of tailoring diets according to cultural background. It is important because diet is a cheaper tool to manage blood sugar than diabetic drugs and could therefore be of great benefit to healthcare systems.

To read the full blog post by Anna Cherta Murillo click here.

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  • Professor Gary Frost
    Professor Gary Frost
    Theme Lead, Gut Health
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  • NIHR Imperial Clinical Research Facility