A little bitter with a little sweet, in the form of a nano-complex dietary supplement taken before meals, can result in a substantial reduction of fat and sugar absorption in the body, Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Harvard University researchers have found.
The researchers previously showed that naringenin, the molecule responsible for the bitter taste in grapefruits, could potentially be used in the treatment of diabetes, arteriosclerosis and hyper-metabolism.
However, the absorption of naringenin in its natural form is very low. To overcome this obstacle, the Hebrew University-Harvard research team, led by Dr. Yaakov Nahmias of the Benin School of Engineering and Computer Science at the Hebrew University and his graduate student, Maria Shulman, has now created, through further research, a nano-complex of naringenin within a ring of sugar called cyclodextrin. This complex increased the absorption of naringenin by 11 times.
What the researchers found is that a single dose of this complex, taken just before a high fat and high sugar meal given to rats, was able to reduce the generation of VLDL (bad cholesterol) by 42%, and increase insulin sensitivity by 64%.