University of Saskatchewan

April 19, 2014   

U of S researchers make link between carbs and Type 2 diabetes

Dr. Kaushik Desai
March 04, 2011

SASKATOON - Researchers at the University of Saskatchewan have discovered, after a two-year investigation, that diets high in carbohydrates are a probable mechanism for the skyrocketing rates of Type 2 diabetes.

The work by Kaushik Desai and Lily Wu, professors in the U of S College of Medicine’s Department of Pharmacology, focused on methylglyoacal (MG), which is produced naturally as the body metabolizes glucose consumed in carbohydrates.

They found that high levels of MG produce all the features of Type 2 diabetes, including damage to insulin producing cells in the pancreas, insulin resistance and impairment of body tissue to use glucose properly. Their finding are set to be published in the American Diabetes Association journal Diabetes in March.

“This is very exciting for us because diabetes is one of the most important health issues in North America,” says Desai.

The researchers findings come on the heels of the statistic showing that in 2008, 1.66 million Canadians have diabetes, compared to 1.22 million in 2003 – a 36 per cent increase in just five years. By 2010, the number of cases in Canada is expected to be three million with particular concern for Aboriginal people.

Dr. Desai will be available for interviews and to discuss this groundbreaking finding.

For more information, contact:

Mark Ferguson
(306) 966-1851
m.ferguson@usask.ca

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