Asian Herbs Fight Diabetes, Obesity

July 7, 2009

1 Min Read
Asian Herbs Fight Diabetes, Obesity

AMHERST, Mass.Researchers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst nutrition department and Oriental medicine center in Korea are exploring Asian medicinal herbs as a tool for managing the global epidemic of type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Researchers will study molecular-level biological function of certain medicinal herbs, such as the vetch, Astragalus, also known as milk vetch or huang chi. They will use a fat cell differentiation model to test a number of plant-based compounds or phytochemicals for potential anti-obesity and anti-diabetes properties, first in in vitro cell culture, then in whole animals and, finally, in humans.

Overall, we are trying to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the development of fat cells in the body, especially by bioactive food components, with the goal to find therapeutic strategies for not only preventing chronic diseases such as obesity, cancer and heart disease, but promoting overall health. These chronic disorders are all related to our diet, illustrating the importance of nutrition, said one researcher.

 

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