Substance in Tangerines Fights Obesity and Heart Disease

tangerinesScienceDaily published an article this week about new research showing that a flavonoid in tangerines called Nobiletin not only helps to prevent obesity, but protects against type 2 diabetes, and atherosclerosis. The research, conducted by the University of Western Ontario, is published in the journal Diabetes.

For this study, mice were fed a diet high in fats and simple sugars. ScienceDaily says one group became obese and presented all the signs associated with metabolic syndrome, including elevated cholesterol and triglycerides, high blood levels of insulin and glucose, and a fatty liver. Metabolic syndrome increases the risk of diabetes and atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries, which causes heart attacks and stroke.

The second group of mice were fed the same diet, except with Nobiletin added. This group didn’t show any elevation in their levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, insulin or glucose, and their weight gain was normal. The study indicates that Nobiletin prevents the buildup of fat in the liver, likely by stimulating the genes that aid in burning fat, and obstructing those genes that make fat.

“The Nobiletin-treated mice were basically protected from obesity,” says Murray Huff, who is the Director of the Vascular Biology Research Group at Robarts. “And in longer-term studies, Nobiletin also protected these animals from atherosclerosis, the buildup of plaque in arteries, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke. This study really paves the way for future studies to see if this is a suitable treatment for metabolic syndrome and related conditions in people.”

You can read ScienceDaily’s article here.


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