(NaturalNews) Scientists at the University of Warwick have identified a potential preventive effect of strawberries on Type 2 Diabetes risk. Although strawberries have previously been identified as effective at battling high cholesterol and post-meal blood glucose levels, professor Paul Thornalley's research has now demonstrated that strawberry extract actually stimulates the protein "Nrf2" in our bodies, which activates antioxidant activity and decreases blood lipids.
Eating strawberries or strawberry extract may offer a simple, natural solution to improving cardiovascular health. Now that researchers know how strawberries stimulate this protective effect, they can focus on determining how much and which form of strawberries will work best to fight cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
Eating fruit despite diabetes
Of course, a proper diet has always been the first line of defense in preventing diabetes naturally and - coupled with maintaining a healthy body weight - is the best natural treatment for achieving safe blood glucose levels. Many diabetics focus so much on carbohydrate counting and the avoidance of sugar that they virtually eliminate fruit from their diet. Unfortunately, this habit may prevent them from benefiting from the natural disease-fighting properties of some of nature's most delicious foods (such as strawberries).
In fact, when incorporated carefully into the diabetic diet, eating a variety of fruits can be the key to maintaining energy levels, improving memory, fighting neurodegenerative illness, safeguarding cardiovascular health, achieving healthy skin and organs, and even preventing common diabetes complications.
So why the diabetic war on fruit?
Many diabetics believe that fruit sabotages blood glucose levels and eats up large portions of their carbohydrate budget for meals. Eaten in correct serving sizes and as part of an otherwise balanced diet; however, virtually any fruit can be a regular addition to the diabetic diet. In general, diabetic and non-diabetic diets should be composed of lean protein, low-fat dairy products, whole grains, lots of vegetables, and a variety of fruit.
Serve up some strawberries with Greek yogurt and walnuts for breakfast, snack on some grapes and whole grain crackers in the afternoon, or whip up a mango salsa to serve with fish at dinner. In general, the more variety, the better. Berries, bananas, apples, and citrus all boast wonderful health benefits, and can be easily monitored for portion size and identified on glycemic index charts. After a few weeks with strawberries and other fruits in the diet, things may start looking up as your diabetes risk and health woes go down - naturally!
About the author: Katie BrindAmour is a Certified Health Education Specialist and passionate health and wellness freelance writer. She enjoys cooking, yoga, gardening, searching for the perfect wine and chocolate combination, and spending time with friends. She has a Masters in Biology and is currently pursuing her PhD in Health Services Management and Policy. She also enjoys blogging for Women's Healthcare Topics and Healthline Networks.