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1.  Glycemic indices of five varieties of dates in healthy and diabetic subjects 
Nutrition Journal  2011;10:59.
Background
This study was designed to determine the glycemic indices of five commonly used varieties of dates in healthy subjects and their effects on postprandial glucose excursions in individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Methods
Composition analysis was carried out for five types of dates (Tamer stage). The weights of the flesh of the dates equivalent to 50 g of available carbohydrates were calculated. The study subjects were thirteen healthy volunteers with a mean (± SD) age of 40.2 ± 6.7 years and ten participants with type 2 diabetes mellitus (controlled on lifestyle measures and/or metformin) with a mean HbA1c (± SD) of 6.6 ± (0.7%) and a mean age (± SD) of 40.8 ± 5.7 years. Each subject was tested on eight separate days with 50 g of glucose (on 3 occasions) and 50 g equivalent of available carbohydrates from the 5 varieties of date (each on one occasion). Capillary glucose was measured in the healthy subjects at 0, 15, 30, 45, 60, 90 and 120 min and for the diabetics at 0, 30, 60, 90, 120, 150 and 180 min. The glycemic indices were determined as ratios of the incremental areas under the response curves for the dates compared to glucose. Statistical analyses were performed using the Mann-Whitney U test and repeated measures analysis of variance.
Results
Mean glycemic indices ± SEM of the dates for the healthy individuals were 54.0 ± 6.1, 53.5 ± 8.6, 46.3 ± 7.1, 49.1 ± 3.6 and 55.1 ± 7.7 for Fara'd, Lulu, Bo ma'an, Dabbas and Khalas, respectively. Corresponding values for those with type 2 diabetes were very similar (46.1 ± 6.2, 43.8 ± 7.7, 51.8 ± 6.9, 50.2 ± 3.9 and 53.0 ± 6.0). There were no statistically significant differences in the GIs between the control and the diabetic groups for the five types of dates, nor were there statistically significant differences among the dates' GIs (df = 4, F = 0.365, p = 0.83).
Conclusion
The results show low glycemic indices for the five types of dates included in the study and that their consumption by diabetic individuals does not result in significant postprandial glucose excursions. These findings point to the potential benefits of dates for diabetic subjects when used in a healthy balanced diet.
Trial Registration Number
ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01307904
doi:10.1186/1475-2891-10-59
PMCID: PMC3112406  PMID: 21619670
2.  Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D is not related to cardiac natriuretic peptide in nulliparous and lactating women 
Background
Vitamin D deficiency is associated with heightened risk of cardiovascular disease. Potential mechanisms include involvement of vitamin D in regulation of renin-angiotensin system and manufacture and secretion of cardiac natriuretic peptides. Our aim was to document relationships between 25 hydroxyvitamin [25(OH)D] and N-terminal pro B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) and plasma renin activity (PRA) levels and to document the effect of vitamin D administration on NT-proBNP and PRA levels in vitamin D deficient subjects.
Methods
Serum 25(OH)D, parathyroid hormone (PTH), plasma or serum NT-proBNP and PRA levels were measured at baseline in nulliparous and lactating women and after 2 months of oral vitamin D2 (2,000 IU/day or 60,000 IU/month) supplementation to lactating women.
Results
Baseline levels of 25(OH)D were low (<50 nmol/L) in most women whereas PRA and NT-proBNP levels were within the normal range. There were no significant correlations between baseline 25(OH)D or PTH with NT-proBNP and PRA. Vitamin D administration over a 2-month period in lactating women was associated with a decline in NT-proBNP (by 9.1 ± 2.0 pmol/L; p < 0.001) and PRA (by 0.32 ± 0.17 nmol/L/hr; p = 0.064). However, there were no significant correlations between the changes from baseline in 25(OH)D and either NT-proBNP (r = -0.04, p = 0.8) or PRA (r = -0.04, p = 0.8).
Conclusion
We found no significant correlations between 25(OH)D or PTH with NT-proBNP and PRA in vitamin D deficient women. Further information is required to clarify the effects of vitamin D administration on cardiac structure and function.
doi:10.1186/1472-6823-9-4
PMCID: PMC2646736  PMID: 19178708

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