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Benefits of psyllium for individuals with type 2 diabetes

Results from this double-blind, placebo-controlled parallel study suggest that supplementation with psyllium may be a safe and effective method of improving glycemic and lipid control in certain individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus and hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol). Maintaining glycemic control has been shown to delay the onset and progression of complications associated with type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetes mellitus. In addition, previous research has demonstrated that people with type 2 (non-insulin dependent) diabetes mellitus have increased susceptibility to atherosclerotic disease, and can also benefit from improved glycemic control. In this eight-week study, effects of psyllium on glycemic and serum lipid levels were investigated. Patients receiving psyllium showed significant improvements in glucose and lipid values relative to those taking placebo. All-day and post-meal glucose and LDL (low density lipoprotein) cholesterol concentrations were lower in the psyllium group than the placebo group. Psyllium was well tolerated, with no serious adverse effects reported.

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Anderson J, Allgood L, Turner J, et al. Effects of psyllium on glucose and serum lipid responses in men with type 2 diabetes and hypercholesterolemia. Am J Clin Nutr 1999; 70: 466-73.

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