The Effect of Anthocyanins in Tart Cherries on Type 2 Diabetes and the Need for Expanded Research in the Field of Natural Medicine
Prater, Anrianna R.
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Anthocyanins are the pigment responsible for the deep reds, purples, and blues seen in many fruits and vegetables. This chemical contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, making it very useful in helping to treat chronic diseases such as diabetes, arthritis, gout, heart disease, and cancer. This paper focuses on the relationship between anthocyanins in tart cherries and type 2 diabetes, based on information gathered from various research papers on this subject. It was found that the antioxidant properties of cherries are capable of stabilizing excess free radicals in the body that are the result of oxidative stress. This oxidative stress can cause hyperglycemia which in turn can cause damage to bone, retinal tissue, and other cells. The antioxidant properties of anthocyanins also help with the prevention of diabetic vascular dysfunction, which is the leading cause of death for a type 2 diabetic. The anti-inflammatory properties of cherries were found to slightly help decrease insulin resistance, thereby helping to maintain consistent blood glucose levels. This paper also discusses the need for more research concerning natural products and their medicinal uses. Many pharmaceutical companies are no longer researching natural products due to their synthesis being time-consuming and costly, despite the many chronic diseases that are treatable with these products.