Could This Superfruit Compound Rival Resveratrol?
It’s likely you have never heard of pterostilbene. This natural compound is most commonly found in purple fruits like blueberries and grapes and is a cousin to the well-known anti-aging nutrient, resveratrol. Similar in chemical structure, the two nutrients perform different functions in the blood and at the cellular level to lower the risk from heart disease, diabetes, cancer and the aging process itself. Pterostilbene is easily able to enter the cellular matrix to prevent the accumulation of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) that fuel aging and metabolic decline. Both nutrients can be obtained from a well balanced diet, but supplementation may be necessary to optimize a myriad of health benefits.
Pterostilbene Reverses Insulin Resistance and Metabolic Dysfunction
Known as a stilbenoid, pterostilbene participates in anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory reactions to protect the delicate insulin secreting beta cells in the pancreas. This helps to prevent damaging blood sugar surges that promote metabolic dysfunction and diabetes. In addition, the nutrient works in synergy with resveratrol to lower triglycerides and moderate the small dense LDL cholesterol particles that become trapped in the arterial walls and result in heart-clogging plaque.
Reporting in the Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition, researchers found that pterostilbene was capable of assisting beta cell regranulation that helps regulate the normal secretion of insulin in response to blood sugar fluctuations. Scientists demonstrated that the compound neutralized the effect of free radicals that damage beta cells after a meal high in sugar and refined carbohydrates. This capability helped to increase insulin response and reverse the damaging effects of insulin resistance commonly seen in diabetics.
Super Nutrient Inhibits Arterial Plaque Formation
Atherosclerosis is characterized by the abnormal proliferation of cells within the endothelial lining of the coronary arteries that lead to plaque formation. Pterostilbene has been shown to inhibit this deadly process in a study published in the journal Vascular Pharmacology. Researchers found that the compound regulated DNA of the smooth muscles that make up the inner lining of the arteries so plaque was less likely to accumulate. The study authors concluded that “pterostilbene may be a potential anti-proliferative agent for the treatment of atherosclerosis.”
Pterostilbene Regulates Normal Cell Death, Prevents Many Cancer Lines
Pterostilbene is emerging as a powerful ally in the fight against many cancer lines due to its small molecular size that allows the nutrient to easily gain access to cancer cells. Researchers publishing in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that pterostilbene “damages a cancer cell`s membrane and DNA and induces death signals causing self-destruction.” The nutrient has demonstrated the ability to suppress the energy-producing system within the cancer cell to protect against cancers of the breast, prostate, colon, lung and liver.
Pterostilbene functions by affecting multiple cellular mechanisms to enhance human health and lower risk from diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Like its close relative resveratrol, this super nutrient is found in small concentrations in muscadine and red varietal grapes as well as many members of the dark berry family including blueberries and cranberries. Health-minded individuals may want to consider supplementation to obtain the higher research dosage (.125 mg) shown to prevent chronic disease and extend healthy lifespan.
John Phillip is a Certified Nutritional Consultant and diet, health and nutrition researcher and author with a passion for understanding weight loss challenges and encouraging health modification through natural diet, lifestyle and targeted supplementation. John’s passion is to research and write about the cutting edge alternative health technologies that affect our lives. Discover the latest alternative health news concerning diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia and weight loss at My Optimal Health Resource
Recommended for you:
Share the knowledge!
Article updated on: September 9th, 2013