Pterostilbene fared better than resveratrol for blood sugar management in animal study

By Adi Menayang

- Last updated on GMT

Getty Images / Gorodenkoff
Getty Images / Gorodenkoff

Related tags Pterosilbene Resveratrol Ayurveda Diabetes

Obese rats that received pterostilbene exhibited improvements in blood sugar levels and muscle health, more so than obese rats given resveratrol, according to a new study.

Pterostilbene and resveratrol are chemically related antioxidants. The latter, found naturally in red grapes, is responsible for the anti-aging and cardiovascular health halo surrounding wine (a Google image search for resveratrol, for example, returns images of glasses of red wine).

But several published studies have suggested that its chemical cousin pterostilbene is the more bioavailable and efficacious one, such as these 2011 studies looking at colon health​ and mental function​ benefits.

Adding to this body of research is a study out of Çukurova University in Turkey, in which researchers looked at the effects of pterostilbene and resveratrol supplementation in obese rats. It was published in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine ​in May.

“According to our experimental findings, pterostilbene is relatively more effective than resveratrol at the same dose, which makes the former nutraceutically more advantageous,” ​they wrote in the report.

Ingredient supplier Sabinsa Corporation, with headquarters in Bengaluru, India and operations in New Jersey and Utah, supplied the ingredients used in the study. The company’s ingredient portfolio includes commercialized versions of pterostilbene (Silbinol) derived from the Indian Kino (Pterocarpus ​marsupium) plant, and resveratrol (Resvenox).

The results have positive implications for the prevention and management of chronic ailments like diabetes, according to the company.

“Diabetes is a highly debilitating disease diagnosed as afflicting nearly 10% of the US population with an equal percentage of undiagnosed, with the total cost of diagnosed diabetes in the US alone amounted $327 billion in 2017,”​ said Nagabhushanam Kalyanam, PhD, Sabinsa’s president of research and development, commenting independently on the study in a press release.

“While pharmaceutical treatments continue to evolve to contain the effects of the disease, sedentary lifestyle and unhealthy diets increase the diabetes population. Dietary supplementation is a robust add-on method to control the effects of diabetes without side-effects.”

Study details

Researchers induced obesity and diabetes in 80 male Wistar Albino rats. They divided the rats into eight groups: A control group of healthy rats, another control group of diabetic rats, three groups of rats given different doses of pterostilbene, and three groups of rats given different doses of resveratrol.

Rats were observed for a period of five weeks for their blood glucose, serum insulin, and malondialdehyde levels. At the end of the intervention period, muscles of the rats were examined biomechanically and histologically.

Blood glucose, serum insulin, and MDA levels in diabetic rats approached normal levels after applying pterostilbene, the researchers reported. The compound was also linked to better enhancement in the skeletal muscle morphological structure, suggesting that it may also improve some muscle diseases that coexist with diabetes.

Source: Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Published online,
“Therapeutic Potential of Pterostilbene and Resveratrol on Biomechanic, Biochemical, and Histological Parameters in Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetic Rats”
Authors: Bora Tastekin, et al

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