These berries can help manage diabetes, study finds

There are several foods you can add to your diet to help manage diabetes, including berries, according to a new report.

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Researchers from the Illinois Institute of Technology recently conducted a small study, published in the Obesity journal, to determine the benefits of red raspberries for those with prediabetes and insulin resistance.

To do so, they examined a group of adults, aged 20 to 60. The subjects were required to eat breakfast meals over the course of three days. One meal contained one cup of raspberries, the second contained two cups of raspberries and the last contained no raspberries. The participants had their blood tested after each meal.

After analyzing the results, they found that those who ate the most raspberries needed less insulin to manage their blood glucose. In fact, those who had two cups of raspberries included in a meal had lower glucose concentrations, compared to those who had no raspberries.

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"People at risk for diabetes are often told to not eat fruit because of their sugar content. However, certain fruits – such as red raspberries – not only provide essential micronutrients, but also components such as anthocyanins, which give them their red color, ellagitannins and fibers that have anti-diabetic actions," co-author Britt Burton-Freeman said in a statement. "For people who are at risk for diabetes, cardiovascular disease and other health risks, knowing what foods have protective benefits and working them into your diet now can be an important strategy for slowing or reversing progression to disease."

About 34 percent of American adults were prediabetic in 2015, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Patients with prediabetes are more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer's disease and other illnesses.

The scientists said their findings are particularly beneficial to individuals who are obese or overweight with prediabetes.

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They concluded, "a simple inclusion of certain fruits, such as red raspberries with meals, can have glucose lowering benefits with indications of improvements in insulin responses."