Clinical Digest: Type 2 Diabetes and Dietary Supplements
Many widely marketed dietary supplement products claim to provide health benefits for people with diabetes. Researchers have studied several dietary supplements to see if they can help people manage type 2 diabetes or lower their risk of developing the disease, but currently there is not enough evidence to suggest that any dietary supplement can help prevent or manage type 2 diabetes. Some supplements may interact with diabetes treatments or increase the risk of kidney disease.
This issue of the digest addresses some of the many supplements studied for diabetes—such as alpha-lipoic acid, chromium, magnesium, and omega-3s—with a focus on those that have undergone clinical trials.
Lanay Mudd, Ph.D.
July 13, 2017
We all know that a college education plus postgraduate education is expensive. The average education debt for biomedical research graduates was recently estimated at $175,000. Needless to say, high educational debt levels are an issue for early-stage investigators; in fact, significant student loan debt is the barrier to beginning and sustaining a biomedical research career that’s most often reported by new investigators. NIH is working to make this transition easier! In exchange for a commitment to conduct biomedical or behavioral research, NIH will repay up to $70,000 of student loan debt per 2-year contract through the NIH Loan Repayment Programs.
Needles and Coffee May Not Mix; Even a Low Dose of Caffeine Blocks Acupuncture’s Pain Relief in Mice
Recent research in mice suggests that ingesting even a low dose of caffeine may interfere with the analgesic effects of acupuncture in acute and chronic pain models.
Previous animal research showed that the analgesic effect of acupuncture is mediated by a steep increase in extracellular adenosine levels at the acupuncture point and subsequent local activation of the adenosine A1 receptor. Furthermore, adenosine receptor activation during acupuncture is potentially impacted by caffeine, which is a potent adenosine receptor antagonist. Since a detectable amount of caffeine stays in the body for more than 12 hours after drinking one cup of coffee, a residual amount of caffeine could be present at the time of acupuncture treatment in people who ingest caffeine daily.
Latest Findings From CREST-E Trial Don’t Support Using the Dietary Supplement Creatine To Treat Huntington’s Disease
Data from the Creatine Safety, Tolerability & Efficacy in Huntington’s Disease (CREST-E) trial show that the dietary supplement creatine, in doses up to 40 mg daily for as long as 4 years, does not slow progression of the disease in people with early symptoms. This trial, supported by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, with additional funding from the National Institutes of Health’s Office of Dietary Supplements, was recently published in the journal Neurology.