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Transcript of “Dodge type 2 diabetes by eating yellow vegetables”
Granny has type 2 diabetes. Daddy has type 2 diabetes. You’re next……………….. it’s in your genes.
Try as they might, scientist have yet to pin down THE GENE for type 2 diabetes.
The reason, there isn’t ONE.
What scientist have discovered, is that certain genes do increase the odds, that you will become diabetic, but each is contributing a tiny bit to the overall picture. Obviously, the more “risky” variants you inherit, the higher the likelihood you’re eventually face a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes.
But your genes are not your DESTINY.
Having a gene is only half the story
Genes do not function in a vacuum. A gene expresses itself i.e. does it’s thing, based on the environment it finds itself operating in. And, to a certain extent, you can control the kind of environment your gene finds itself in…….
This is GOOD NEWS !
It gives YOU a little wiggle room, so your pre-disposition to diabetes, is not a guarantee, you will become diabetic, even if, you have a bothersome gene.
So what environments do your genes prefer ?
This is precisely the question a group of researchers from Stanford University asked.
To answer the question, they needed BIG DATA i.e. they need to look at information from lots and lots and lots of people. And, they needed lots of information about
- Which genes were present
- What the environment looked like
- The state of health of the individual
Gathering all this info – is difficult.
Fortunately, the team could access a very big, ongoing study, known as the National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey. This study is keeping tabs on the health status of Americans.
The team tapped into this data and did some serious number crunching.
The needle in the haystack
Since there are million ways, genes and environment can connect, the team had to narrow there search to just a few genes , in a few environments.
They chose 18 genes…..all of which previous studies have hinted are involved in type 2 diabetes.
Next, they chose five environmental factors……. the factors they chose, were all things that could be quantified, using a blood sample. The factors they looked at, included
- Heptachlor epoxide
So what did they find ?
SLC30A8 is sensitive to the environment
After all the number crunching, they found a connection….
The SLC30A8 gene, is responsible for producing a protein which is found inside the granules that secrete insulin. It’s job is to move zinc into the granules. The zinc is needed to ensure the insulin matures and end’s up getting secreted.
When this gene is missing in mice – they get diabetes !
People who have the rs3266634 version of this gene – are at risk of having diabetes.
If they are low on beta-carotenes.
The team also saw a connection with higher levels of gamma-tocopherol, but this effect was not SO BIG.
Do you have this gene variant ?
It is pretty common – between 50 – 60 % of people are carrying two copies of rs3266634 variant of the SLC30A8 gene. (Remember, you always have two copies of a gene, you inherit one version from your Mom and one version from your Dad).
So………………………. this could definitely be one of those genes you got, making you more likely to get type 2 diabetes.
But, no worries.
Keep the beta carotene levels high
And, the gene will be “less risky”.
So how do you do this ?
Beta-carotene is a form of vitamin A. If you want more of it, you need to make a habit of eating yellow coloured vegetables. Carrots, pumpkin, butternut – all of these will be good sources of beta-carotene.
Eating more yellow vegetables will make you LOOK BETTER, but it might not be necessary – simply eating vegetables is likely to do the trick.
NOTE : The design of this study, cannot really say YELLOW VEGETABLES are key. Since people who have higher levels of beta carotene in their blood, are by definition vegetable eaters.
So be a vegetable eater. Use deception if you have to, to eat them.
Keep the gamma-tocopherol levels down too
This study suggests environments with too much g-tocopherol, a form of vitamin E, make this gene more risky too.
So, what are you up to, if you have lots of gamma-tocopherol ?
Big sources of gamma-tocopherol are seed oils, such as soybean, corn and canola oils and margarine.
Yup ! Those so called heart healthy polyunsaturated fats, are potentially risky.
When food meets man
Your health is impacted by your genes, but your genes are not in control.
Your environment COUNTS.
“Control” your environment, so you create BETTER BODY CHEMISTRY and optimize your health.
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