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Levels of blood glucose rise sharply in patients with type 2 diabetes immediately following a meal. Red wine and tea contain antioxidants that help to slow the passage of glucose through the small intestine and into the bloodstream, which can prevent the blood sugar spike.
Keeping blood sugar levels normal is one of the key challenges of managing diabetes; doing so can help prevent the disease from contributing to heart disease and high blood pressure as well as damaging the eyes, kidneys, nerves and blood vessels.
In the study, researchers tested how well wine and tea could inhibit the activity of a target enzyme called alpha-glucosidase, which is responsible for triggering the absorption of glucose by the small intestine.
Red wine came out on top, as it was able to inhibit the enzyme by nearly 100 percent, compared to white wine at 20 percent.
Out of the four types of tea tested — black, oolong, white and green — black tea was most effective, followed by white tea and oolong tea.
Science Daily April 3, 2008
Journal of Food Biochemistry February 2008, Volume 32 Issue 1 Page 15-31