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Seared tuna with butter beans and roasted tomatoes

Preheat the oven to 180ºC / 350ºF / gas mark 4. Mix together the cumin, coriander seeds and chilli flakes, press into both sides of the tuna and set aside for 30 minutes to allow the flavours to develop. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a small pan and fry the onion and garlic for 2-3 minutes. Transfer to an ovenproof dish with the butter beans and tomatoes, place in the oven for 30 minutes until the tomatoes begin to char. Heat a griddle pan until smoking and sear the tuna for about 1 m ...

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Breakfast and dinner size could affect blood glucose levels in type 2 diabetes
Patients with type 2 diabetes that eat a high-energy breakfast with a low-energy dinner could find it easier to control their blood sugar levels. A study by Israeli researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem found this diet adjustment could reduce the risk of complications from type 2 diabetes and improve metabolic control. Researchers evaluated 18 patients with type 2 diabetes between the ages of 30 and 70. They all had a body mass index of 22-35 kg/m2 and were treated either with metformin or dietary advice. One group ate a diet which included a 2,946 kilojoule (704.1 calories) breakfast, with further meals reduced in size, while the other group consumed the same energy total throughout the day, but consumed the 2,946 kilojoule meal for dinner. Post-meal glucose levels were 20 per cent lower for the first group, while levels of C-peptide, insulin and GLP-1 were also higher. Compared to the group who ate the bigger meal at dinner, participants of the first diet experienced a 21-25 per cent reduction in blood glucose, on average, and a 23 per cent increase of insulin. "These observations suggest that a change in meal timing influences the overall daily rhythm of post-meal insulin and incretin and results in a substantial reduction in the daily post-meal glucose levels," said study author Professor Oren Froy. Professor Daniela Jakubowicz added that a high energy breakfast could result in post-meal glucose level reductions throughout the day. This could increase metabolic control and have the potential to prevent cardiovascular and other complications in people with type 2 diabetes. The results of this study were published in the journal Diabetologia.
Addressing stress management could improve type 2 diabetes control
Helping patients deal with the stress and commitments that result from type 2 diabetes could reduce the amount of diabetes control problems people experience. The purpose of the Medical University of South Carolina’s study was to assess how the promotion of self-care understanding affected the negative impact diabetes can have on patients. Researchers recruited 302 adults with type 2 diabetes and asked them to complete questionnaires. These included measures for diabetes knowledge, self-care understanding and diet adherence. The mean age of the participants was 66-years-old. They also filled in a Meaning of Illness (MIQ) questionnaire, including questions on relationships, stress and the effect of diabetes on day-to-day living. After possible variables were accounted for, a positive and significant association was noted between self-care understanding of diabetes and stress. Meanwhile, a negative and significant association was found between self-care understanding and diet adherence with little effect of illness. Researchers believe that patients understanding the negative effect of diabetes when promoting self-care understanding and diet adherence can help patients address the stress and changing commitments that result from diabetes. "These results point to the need for considering how a patient with diabetes views the disease and its effect on his or her day-to-day experiences. In addition, the results show that helping patients address the stress and changing commitments that result from diabetes may help decrease the amount of diabetes control problems," the researchers wrote.
LTB4 molecule could explain link between obesity and type 2 diabetes
The molecule LTB4 may be able to explain the link between obesity and type 2 diabetes, potentially opening up new therapeutic possibilities. It is well known that obesity causes inflammation, which causes type 2 diabetes. Why inflammation causes type 2 diabetes, has long been a mystery. A new study, conducted at UC San Diego School of Medicine and published in Nature Medicine, may have found the answer. How was the study conducted? The researchers discovered that LTB4, an inflammatory molecule, triggers insulin resistance, which is one of the biggest factors in the development of type 2 diabetes. The study was conducted on obese mice. When the researchers genetically removed the cell receptor that responds to LTB4 - or used drugs to block it - the insulin sensitivity of the obese mice increased. Why does LTB4 cause insulin resistance? Extra fat triggers macrophages, which are immune cells. When macrophages are triggered, they release LTB4. The problem is, LTB4 activates more macrophages, which then release more LTB4. This cycle is problematic. As more macrophages are triggered, more LTB4 is released, which affects more cell receptors. All of these affected cell receptors develop insulin resistance. The study suggests that obesity is linked to type 2 diabetes because it causes excess LTB4 production, which, in turn, causes more inflammation, which causes more insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is one of the major factors of type 2 diabetes. What can be done about it? When the researchers discovered the inflammation mechanism in obese mice, they genetically engineered mice that did not have the LTB4 receptor. These mice had much better metabolic health than those with LTB4. Then the researchers tried to block the LTB4 receptor with a molecule inhibitor, and found it just as effective a way of inhibiting insulin resistance. These results suggest that new therapeutic approaches may be possible in the near future. Perhaps addressing the proliferation of LTB4 could provide a solution for type 2 diabetes. The significance of the findings "The study is important because it reveals a root cause of type 2 diabetes," said Professor Jerrold Olefsky, senior author of the study. "And now that we understand that LTB4 is the inflammatory factor causing insulin resistance, we can inhibit it to break the link between obesity and diabetes. "We disrupted the LTB4-induced inflammation cycle either through genetics or a drug, it had a beautiful effect - we saw improved metabolism and insulin sensitivity in our mice. "Even though they were still obese, they were in much better shape."
Diabetes.co.uk video receives 2.1 million views, raising diabetes awareness
A recent video posted on the Diabetes.co.uk Facebook page received over 2.1 million views - a new record for the site and for diabetes media in general. Its popularity could mean big things for diabetes awareness. Although the video is light-hearted, its success - it has been shared over 25,000 times - suggests that it touched on the common frustrations associated with hypoglycemia. Clearly, it is a problem people can relate to. The response to the video raises issues of diabetes awareness - in this case, the unseen difficulties of controlling blood glucose levels. Blood glucose control, of course, is a serious problem. People with diabetes need to be aware of the symptoms of hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia, and they need to know how to correct unstable blood sugars. Over time, repeated exposure to low blood glucose levels can lead to hypo unawareness, a state in which people with diabetes are unable to tell that their blood glucose levels are low. The consequences of hypo unawareness can be severe. To address the problem, Diabetes.co.uk designed the Hypo Awareness Program, a free educational course. Participants sign up to the program, then read through several modules of hypoglycemia information. Finally, participants take a test to determine their hypo awareness. The Hypo Awareness Program allows participants to see their hypo awareness improve immediately. The graded test at the end provides instant feedback. Through community-based successes such as these, Diabetes.co.uk continues to grow as a popular voice for diabetes awareness.
HbA1c improvements found from oral semaglutide, Novo Nordisk report
Novo Nordisk have presented positive results from their phase II trial of OG217SC, an oral formulation of long-acting GLP-1 analogue semaglutide designed to treat type 2 diabetes. Semaglutide stimulates insulin and suppresses the secretion of glucagon, with Novo Nordisk’s oral formulation found to improve HbA1c levels. HbA1c improvements Novo Nordisk’s phase II trial compared the once-daily OG217SC to an oral placebo or a subcutaneous administration of semaglutide once a week. The 600 participants all suffered from type 2 diabetes and were treated for 26 weeks. People were treated with OG217SC across five different ranges of dosage, between 2.5mg to 40mg. They were found to show dose-dependent HbA1c improvements between 0.7 and 1.9 per cent. HbA1c improvements of 1.9 per cent were also observed in patients treated with a 1mg dose of subcutaneous semaglutide. Only a 0.3 per cent improvement was noted from the placebo. A weight loss of around 6.5kg was noted in patients treated with subcutaneous semaglutide, which was similar to a reduction experienced in those treated with the highest levels of OG217SC. While displaying similarly impressive results to the injected semaglutide, there were greater side effects, such as nausea and vomiting, which could prove problematic for patients with type 2 diabetes to tolerate. Novo Nordisk plan to advance with phase III of oral semaglutide as a once-daily tablet, as well as progressing with research on the once-weekly subcutaneous injection, which is currently in phase III development.
Vitamin D could prevent type 2 diabetes
People with low levels of vitamin D are more likely to have type 2 diabetes, according to new research. The study, conducted at the Universidad de Malaga, found that type 2 diabetes risk was increased regardless of weight. The research suggests that vitamin D levels are more closely linked to type 2 diabetes than obesity. Vitamin D is produced in response to sunlight exposure. It is actually a pro-hormone, which means that it intensifies the effects of hormones. Vitamin D can also be acquired from eggs, fish, and dairy products. The study was conducted by examining the relationships between vitamin D, body mass index (BMI), and type 2 diabetes. 118 participants were used. The researchers grouped the participants by BMI and categorised them as diabetic, prediabetic, or non-diabetic. Then the vitamin D levels of all the participants were recorded. Participants with obesity, but no diabetic disorders, had higher levels of vitamin D than those with diabetes or prediabetes. Leaner participants with diabetes had low levels of vitamin D. The results suggest that vitamin D is connected to blood glucose levels rather than BMI. Getting plenty of vitamin D could directly prevent the development of type 2 diabetes. Dr. Manuel Macias-Gonzales, one of the study's authors, said: "Our findings indicate that vitamin D is associated more closely with glucose metabolism than obesity. "The study suggests that vitamin D deficiency and obesity interact synergistically to heighten the risk of diabetes and other metabolic disorders. "The average person may be able to reduce their risk by maintaining and healthy diet and getting enough outdoor activity." The study was published in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
Diabetes and depression linked to increased dementia risk
The risk of dementia is increased for people with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) if they also have diabetes or depression. MCI affects 19 per cent of people aged 65 or over and refers to problems remembering day-to-day things - it is more severe than the effects of natural ageing but not as severe as dementia. University College London scientists recommended that certain lifestyle changes to improve diet and mood could reduce the risk, with the Mediterranean diet found to be beneficial. Researchers reviewed 62 studies, assessing a total of 15,950 people who had been diagnosed with MCI. They discovered that people with diabetes were 65 per cent more likely to develop dementia, while those with psychiatric symptoms, such as depression, were twice as likely. Roughly 46 per cent of people with MCI develop dementia within three years, compared to three per cent of the general population who experience a normal age-related decline in thinking. Lead author Dr Claudia Cooper, UCL, said: "Lifestyle changes to improve diet and mood might help people with MCI to avoid dementia, and bring many other health benefits." The Mediterranean diet has been supported due to its rich content of fruit, oily fish and olive oil, which has been reported to protect against type 2 diabetes. This has been backed by Dr. Clare Walton, research manager at Alzheimer's Society in the UK, who added: "While there's currently no cure [for dementia], we know that the best way to reduce your dementia risk is to eat a Mediterranean diet rich in oily fish and vegetables, keep physically active, not smoke and have your blood pressure regularly checked."
Early stages of type 1 diabetes identified through MRI
It is possible to use magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to observe the inflammation in the pancreas which leads to type 1 diabetes. Researchers at the Massachusetts General Hospital, United States, investigated the use of ferumoxytol, a coated iron nanoparticle, to test if imaging pancreatic inflammation could be achieved in human volunteers. Ferumoxytol leaks out of blood vessels in inflammation sites, with pancreatic inflammation directed against insulin-producing c cells a sign of developing type 1 diabetes. 11 newly-diagnosed type 1 diabetics were recruited for the study who displayed evidence that their pancreatic beta cells were being targeted by inflammation. A control group of 10 people without any indicators of diabetes were also recruited. Ferumoxytol-MRI images of the patient group with diabetes were observed to have ferumoxytol accumulation in the pancreas, displaying evidence of continued inflammation. This was not observed in the control group. Researchers believe these images could help develop a greater understanding of type 1 diabetes and its natural history, as well as defining which patients with inflammation will likely develop type 1 diabetes. "There was also a large amount of variation between individuals, which aligns with what you see clinically. That's never been shown in living humans before," said Jason Gaglia, M.D., M.M.Sc., an Assistant Investigator in the Section of Immunobiology at Joslin. "It might make sense to scan people in that group to see who is likely to progress and who isn't. Those who are progressing may be the ones you would want to recruit for research on immunomodulatory therapies."
Common household chemical may cause insulin resistance, obesity, and type 2 diabetes
A flame-retardant chemical, commonly found on household items, may cause metabolic problems that lead to insulin resistance, obesity, and type 2 diabetes. This is according to new research from the University of New Hampshire. The chemical, known as polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE), is found in items such as sofas, carpet, and electronics. It may be responsible for metabolic issues that cause obesity. In turn, this increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, stroke, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, and some forms of cancer. The obesity study The study was conducted by exposing rats to PBDEs. The researchers noticed the chemical disrupted the rats' metabolisms, leading to obesity and liver enlargement. Moreover, it changed the behaviour of their hormones. When the fat cells were affected by lots of flame retardants, the hormones behaved in the same way as the hormones of obese people: insulin sensitivity decreased, while epinephrine sensitivity increased. The researchers are unsure as to why PBDE causes insulin resistance, obesity, and type 2 diabetes, but it could be due to the suppression of a certain metabolic enzyme known as PEPCK. Levels of PEPCK halved in the livers of the rats, after just one month of PBDE exposure. A factor in the obesity, type 2 epidemic? Gale Carey, Professor of Nutrition and leader of the study, said: "Being obese or overweight increases one's risk of many diseases including type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, coronary heart disease stroke, gall bladder disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea and certain cancers. "Despite the plethora of resources devoted to understanding the roles of diet and exercise in the obesity epidemic, this epidemic continues to escalate, suggested that other environmental factors may be involved. "At the biochemical level there is a growing body of experimental evidence suggesting certain environmental chemicals, or 'obesogens', could disrupt the body's metabolism and contribute the obesity epidemic." The research supports other recent studies, which have indicated that the development of obesity may involve factors other than diet. Genetics and environmental factors could both have a part to play. "One of the hallmarks of somebody who is becoming diabetic - and often this accompanies weight gain - is that their fat cells become sluggish in their response to insulin. With epinephrine, the fat cells more easily release the fatty acids into the blood stream and if those fatty acids are not used, they promote insulin resistance."
New drug could treat obesity and type 2 diabetes
The trials of a new drug to treat obesity have been successful, say scientists from Tokyo Medical University. If the drug is successful, it could lead to better treatments for obesity and type 2 diabetes. The new drug, called LS-102, targets a gene linked to levels of adipose tissue, which is a key factor in the development of obesity. Obese people are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes and other metabolic diseases. The targeted gene is called the synoviolin gene (SYVN1). When the researchers bred mice without SYVN1, the mice had less body fat than those with the gene. Essentially, the fat tissue of mice without SYVN1 burned more energy than those with the gene. The mice also had lower blood glucose levels, which suggest that the drug could be an effective treatment for type 2 diabetes and hyperglycemia. The researchers, however, suggest that more studies are needed on this function of LS-102. Obesity affects one in four adults in the UK, and increases the risk of a number of other conditions. These include type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and some kinds of cancer. Professor Toshihiro Nakajima, leader of the study, said: "Obesity is a known risk factor for other chronic disorders. "Our findings indicate that synoviolin may be a key for understanding the common features of obesity and chronic inflammatory disease such as [rheumatoid arthritis]." The researchers wrote: "Although further studies are needed to clarify the role of SYVN1 in glucose metabolism, SYVN1 is an important drug candidate for obesity and associated metabolic diseases."