Research focuses on antioxidants to tackle obesity

Research focuses on antioxidants to tackle obesity

Al Jalila Foundation is committed to be a leader in medical research and in our mission to discover innovative solutions to address the medical challenges of the future we engage with the greatest minds in the UAE. Professor Salah Gariballa, from UAE University, is one scientific leader who studies nutrition, disease and ageing in prevention and treatment of illness. He has published more than 100 research papers, books and book chapters including more than 60 articles on this important topic.

The UAE has one of the highest prevalence of abdominal (visceral) obesity related diabetes mellitus in the World.  Possible mechanisms that relate visceral obesity to increased risk of diabetes and other related complications include inflammation and oxidative damage.

Due to rising levels of obesity and associated complications in the UAE, Al Jalila Foundation supported a research study lead by Professor Salah to investigate levels of antioxidants both enzymes and vitamins and oxidative damage markers in overweight and obese subjects receiving structured dietary education and to measure their response to visceral fat loss.

Antioxidants found in fruit and vegetables are known to promote health by combating oxidative damage resulting from increased free radicals which are linked to the pathogenesis of obesity related complications.  Increased fruits and vegetables consumption also help weight loss through their low energy content and high dietary fiber content.

The study results revealed that obesity is associated with increased oxidative stress.  The study results also support a beneficial role of higher fruits and vegetables intake in subjects with visceral obesity.  These findings if proven, with availability of healthy food choices could have enormous public health implications for reduction of visceral obesity and its health consequences in the UAE and worldwide.