~ Low-AGE Content of Low-Fat Vegan Diets Could Benefit Diabetic Patients

The low-AGE content of low-fat vegan diets could benefit diabetic patients, although concurrent taurine supplementation may be needed to minimize endogenous AGE production.

According to a study from the United States, "Increased endogenous generation of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) contributes importantly to the vascular complications of diabetes, in part owing to activation of the pro-inflammatory RAGE receptor. However, AGE-altered oligopeptides with RAGE-activating potential can also be absorbed from the diet, and indeed make a significant contribution to the plasma and tissue pool of AGEs; this contribution is especially prominent when compromised renal function impairs renal clearance of AGEs."

"Perhaps surprisingly, foods rich in both protein and fat, and cooked at high heat, tend to be the richest dietary sources of AGEs, whereas low-fat carbohydrate-rich foods tend to be relatively low in AGEs," said Mark F. McCarty at NutriGuard Research. "Conceivably, this reflects the fact that the so-called 'AGEs' in the diet are generated primarily, not by glycation reactions, but by interactions between oxidized lipids and protein; such reactions are known to give rise to certain prominent AGEs, such as EN-carboxymethyl-lysine and methylglyoxal. Although roasted nuts and fried or broiled tofu are relatively high in AGEs, low-fat plant-derived foods, including boiled or baked beans, typically are low in AGEs."

"Thus, a low-AGE content may contribute to the many benefits conferred to diabetics by a genuinely low-fat vegan diet," stated McCarty. "Nonetheless, the plasma AGE content of healthy vegetarians has been reported to be higher than that of omnivores - suggesting that something about vegetarian diets may promote endogenous AGE production. Some researchers have proposed that the relatively high-fructose content of vegetarian diets may explain this phenomenon, but there so far is no clinical evidence that normal intakes of fructose have an important impact on AGE production."

"An alternative or additional possibility is that the relatively poor taurine status of vegetarians up-regulates the physiological role of myeloperoxidase-derived oxidants in the generation of AGEs - in which case, taurine supplementation might be expected to suppress elevated AGE production in vegetarians," reported McCarty. "Thus, a taurine supplemented low-fat vegan diet may be recommended as a strategy for minimizing AGE-mediated complications in diabetics and in patients with renal failure."

McCarty published the study in Medical Hypotheses (The low-AGE content of low-fat vegan diets could benefit diabetics - though concurrent taurine supplementation may be needed to minimize endogenous AGE production. Med Hypotheses, 2005;64(2):394-398).

For additional information, contact Mark F. McCarty, Pantox Laboratories, 4622 Santa Fe Street, San Diego, CA 92109, USA. E-mail: mccarty@pantox.com.

The publisher's contact information for the journal Medical Hypotheses is: Churchill Livingstone, Journal Production Department, Robert Stevenson House, 1-3 Baxters Place, Leith Walk, Edinburgh EH1 3AF, Midlothian, Scotland.

The information in this article comes under the major subject areas of Endocrinology and Proteomics. This article was prepared by Biotech Week editors from staff and other reports. Copyright 2005, Biotech Week via NewsRx.com.

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