‘Dairy fat’ may help curb diabetes in humans, study on dolphins shows

‘Dairy fat’ may help curb diabetes in humans, study on dolphins shows

In a rather surprising find, researchers have revealed that we can tackle diabetes by eating foods rich in heptadecanoic acid – a saturated fat present in butter and some fish. The findings are the result of a study led by the National Marine Mammal Foundation (NMMF) carried out on bottlenose dolphins. Researchers found that this […]

In a rather surprising find, researchers have revealed that we can tackle diabetes by eating foods rich in heptadecanoic acid – a saturated fat present in butter and some fish.

The findings are the result of a study led by the National Marine Mammal Foundation (NMMF) carried out on bottlenose dolphins. Researchers found that this species of marine animals has the ability to readily switch in and out of diabetes-like states and that they can develop metabolic syndrome, a subclinical condition called prediabetes in humans.

The team of researchers lead by Dr. Stephanie Venn-Watson, studied 55 fatty acids and found that the saturated fat heptadecanoic acid had the most beneficial impact on dolphin metabolism. Dolphins with higher levels of heptadecanoic acid in their blood had lower insulin and triglycerides, researchers added.

Heptadecanoic acid, also called margaric acid or C17:0, is a saturated fat found in dairy fat, rye, and some fish. The NMMF study showed no detectable heptadecanoic acid in nonfat dairy product and some amount in low fat dairy products. The highest levels were found in whole fat milk, yogurt, and especially butter. The fish with the highest heptadecanoic acid content was mullet.

The study is published in PLOS ONE.

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