Systematic Review of the Impact of Genistein on Diabetes Related Outcomes
As the 7th leading cause of death in the world, with over 1.6 millions deaths attributed to it in 2016 alone, diabetes mellitus has been a rising global health concern. Type 1 diabetes is caused by lack of insulin production whereas type 2 diabetes is caused by insulin resistance. Both types of diabetes lead to increased glucose levels in the body if left untreated. This, in turn, leads to the development of a host of complications, one of which is ischemic heart disease. Accounting for the death of 16% of the world’s population, ischemic heart disease has been the leading cause of death since 2000. As of 2019, deaths from this disease have risen from 2 million to over 8.9 million globally. While medicine exists to counter the negative outcomes of diabetes mellitus, lower income nations suffer from the lack of availability and high costs of these medications. Therefore, this systematic review was performed to determine whether a non-medicinal treatment could provide similar therapeutic benefits for individuals with diabetes. Genistein is a phytoestrogen found in soy-based products, which has been potentially linked with preventing diabetes and improving diabetes-related symptoms such as hyperglycemia and abnormal insulin levels. We searched PubMed and SCOPUS using the terms ‘genistein’, ‘diabetes’, and ‘glucose’ and identified 32 peer-reviewed articles. In general, preclinical studies demonstrate that genistein decreases body weight as well as circulating glucose and triglycerides concentrations while increasing insulin levels and insulin sensitivity. It also delayed the onset of type 1 and type 2 diabetes. In contrast, clinical studies of genistein in general reported no significant relationship between genistein and body mass, circulating glucose, serum insulin, A1C concentrations, or onset of type 1 diabetes. However, genistein was found to improve insulin sensitivity, delay type 2 diabetes onset and improve serum triglyceride levels. In summary, preclinical and clinical studies suggest that genistein may help delay onset of type 2 diabetes and improve several symptoms associated with the disease. By translating these findings into clinical settings, genistein may offer a cost effective natural approach at mitigating complications associated with diabetes, although additional research is required to confirm these findings.
- Jain, Rijul (Author)
- Sweazea, Karen (Thesis director)
- Al-Nakkash, Layla (Committee member)
- Bolch, Charlotte (Committee member)
- School of Life Sciences (Contributor)
- Barrett, The Honors College (Contributor)