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Sugar from tequila may prevent obesity and diabetes

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Take a shot to your health! A round of shots for partygoers might just be what the doctor ordered, after researchers from Mexico found that natural sugars found in tequila protects against type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Agavins, the sugars that comes from the agave plant (the sap from the plant makes tequila after distilling and fermenting), are non-digestible, meaning they act as dietary fibers that do not raise blood sugar levels. Although agavins are not as sweet as conventional sugar, research think that it could be used as a healthy alternative.

"Agavins are not expensive and they have no known side effects, except for those few people who cannot tolerate them," one of the researchers, Mercedes G. Lopez, said in a press release.

These natural sugars protected a group of mice that were fed a diet to encourage obesity during the clinical study. The mice were broken into seven groups, where the diet of one group consisted of water, and each other the other groups received water with aspartame, glucose, fructose, sucrose, agave syrup, or agavins. The group of mice fed agavin in their water ate less, weighed less, and had a decrease in blood glucose levels. Similar results were found in the group that was fed plain water.

"We have found that since agavins reduce glucose levels and increase GLP-1, they also increase the amount of insulin,” Lopez said. These findings can help those battling or preventing obesity. The GLP-1 hormone aids in makes people feel fuller so they consequentially eat less.

The study and findings were presented at the annual meeting of the American Chemical Society that was held in Dallas, Texas.

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