Fig extract can benefit diabetic treatment: study

By Oliver Morrison

- Last updated on GMT

Image: Shutterstock/MongPro
Image: Shutterstock/MongPro

Related tags Diabetes Obesity botanical

Botanical ingredients supplier Euromed claims a study shows that its fig extract product, called ABAlife, can lower the glycaemic index of foods, and could potentially be a treatment for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, while also help to make products of appeal to consumers eating a ketogenic diet.

The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports​, found that the fig extract’s abscisic acid (ABA) content promoted glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity while decreasing obesity related systemic inflammation in mice. ABA is a plant hormone found in fruits as well as vegetables and is also produced in mammals.

The researchers said the results of the study suggest that ABA could be a new preventive or therapeutic intervention to improve glycaemic control and decrease obesity related systemic inflammation in patients with chronic metabolic diseases. They are planning to advance ABA to Phase II clinical trials in prediabetic and type 2 diabetes patients later this year.

“This study is the culmination of decades of research regarding how ABA exerts its antidiabetic and anti-inflammatory properties,”​ said Dr Josep Bassaganya-Riera, one of the authors of the study. “We already validated the safety and tolerability of fig extract-derived ABA in a Phase I clinical trial in healthy people, during which we demonstrated glycaemic improvements. These new insights further support the clinical development of ABA and take us one step closer to Phase II clinical testing in prediabetic patients.”

The Spanish company said the fig extract is suitable for food, nutraceutical, functional foods and beverages and pharmaceuticals.

It has a slightly sweet flavour but as only small dosages are required (around 200mg). It is available both as powder and liquid, with different concentrations. Euromed said product is extracted from carefully selected Spanish dried figs through a patent pending process using only osmotized water as a solvent. Therefore, the extract is “pure and without any potential residuals from organic solvents​”.

Euromed said the fig extract could also be used to create food products of appeal to consumers following a ketogenic, a low-carb, high-fat, diet in order to achieve weight loss and fat loss.

“Glycemic Index (GI) measures how much a certain food raises your blood sugar. As ABAlife reduces the GI of glucose, you could easily extrapolate that including the extract in foods or beverages that have a higher GI would help reducing their GI, for example within the goals of ketogenic diets.”


Abscisic acid enriched fig extract promotes insulin sensitivity by decreasing systemic inflammation and activating LANCL2 in skeletal muscle

Scientific Reports

Doi: 10.1038/ s41598-020-67300-2

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