Home Blood Sugar Management Broccoli varieties developed to lower blood sugar levels

Broccoli varieties developed to lower blood sugar levels

by Flora Southey
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Type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease. It is characterized by high sugar levels in the blood, which worsens the symptoms.Worldwide, it is estimated that more 1.31 billion people could live with diabetes by 2050– Increased from 529 meters in 2021.

Several treatments are available for people with this disease, from eating better and moving more to losing weight, metformin pills, and insulin. But new patented technologies for the treatment of prediabetes and diabetes also exist in less unlikely forms. It’s a variety of “super broccoli.”

In the UK, Quantum Institute spin-out SmarterNaturally is turning this unique variety into soup products that help lower and maintain elevated blood sugar levels. SmarterNaturally co-founder and CEO Laura Knight believes the product has the potential to be a “game changer” for the millions of people living with this chronic disease.

Building compounds naturally occurring in broccoli

The non-GMO broccoli varieties in question have been bred over decades to contain high amounts of a particular compound, glucoraphanin.

Glucoraphanin, which is naturally found in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower, kale, and Brussels sprouts, is converted to sulforaphane in your intestines before it enters your body’s cells. There it exerts several metabolic effects, promoting the production of antioxidants, reducing inflammation, and improving cellular function.

Smarter naturally grows and dries broccoli to protect its compounds and increase shelf stability. The ingredient is also lightweight, making it easy to incorporate into a “wide range” of different foods, Knight explained at a recent Forward Fooding food technology event in London.

The startup’s technology has other benefits as well. Glucoraphanin is found in small amounts in standard broccoli varieties, but can be destroyed by heat. “Cooking broccoli at home can destroy some of its beneficial compounds,” she told participants, adding that cooking broccoli for a long time is known to affect its bioavailability. and temperature ratios.

“Our products come in raw form. Generally speaking, our products provide at least five times as much glucoraphanin, if not more, than you get from standard varieties. Masu.”

Why drink soup instead of taking supplements?

To reap the benefits of GRextra broccoli varieties, SmarterNaturally recommends consuming one packet of soup per week.

Other means of getting glucoraphanin also exist, such as taking broccoli supplements. The startup estimates that to digest the same dose of glucoraphanin, you would need to swallow 14 tablets of the leading glucoraphanin supplement, or consume five pieces of raw broccoli.

“You can buy broccoli supplements, but the best data is on broccoli florets, and we use whole broccoli heads,” Knight explained. “No other broccoli provides as much glucoraphanin as our broccoli.”

And it’s not just high doses of glucoraphanin that help people “recharge” their cells to function more effectively, the CEO suggested. “We think it’s a weekly magazine.” [boost] This allows cells to act more efficiently. ”

She continued that taking a few supplements a day won’t produce these effects. “And the data is not as good as our product.”

SmarterNaturally claims that once-weekly dosing is the most potent, convenient, and cost-effective solution on the market for adding glucoraphanin to your diet. With a subscription, consumers can purchase a serving of soup for £5 (€5.83).

What else can glucoraphanin do?

Research on the potential health benefits of glucoraphanin and sulforaphane is extensive.

It is estimated that there are more than 3,000 published studies on the health benefits of this compound, covering a variety of health areas.

“What’s really interesting is that many of these areas, such as the early stages of prostate cancer, osteoarthritis, neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, and prediabetes, have no medical intervention at all.”

Glucoraphanin and sulforaphane not only change the behavior of the liver by decreasing the production and release of glucose into the bloodstream, but also transform adipocytes from inactive “white fat” cells to metabolically active cells. It has also been shown to change the behavior of fat cells by converting them. brown fat cells.

It has also been associated with delayed progression of diabetic complications such as cardiomyopathy, vascular complications, limb ischemia, retinopathy, neuropathy, nephropathy, and reproductive health complications.

SmarterNaturally’s soups are rich in fiber, vitamin C, B6, calcium, and folic acid.

The potential of glucoraphanin for food manufacturers

According to SmarterNaturally’s CEO, the market potential is “huge” given the growing number of people with type 2 diabetes.

The startup first launched dry instant soup products in mid-2022 and is currently selling directly to consumers. Plans are underway to launch into an independent health store.

However, soup products may not be the only means of consuming GRextra broccoli varieties.

SmarterNaturally is also in discussions with several “very large” food manufacturers and food retailers about product development and potential raw material supplies.

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