According to new research from the University of Western Ontario, tangerines may offer more benefits than simply being tasty. Led by biologists Murray Huff and Erin Mulvihill, the study—published in the journal Diabetes—reveals that tangerines contain a substance called Nobiletin that may help prevent obesity as well as protect against type 2 diabetes and atherosclerosis.
The study—funded by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario and the Pfizer Canada Cardiovascular Research Program—followed two groups of mice who were fed diets either with or without Nobiletin added. The group of mice on the Nobiletin-enriched diet experienced no elevation in their levels of dangerous substances such as cholesterol, triglycerides, insulin or glucose.
“The Nobiletin-treated mice were basically protected from obesity,” says Huff, the Director of the Vascular Biology Research Group at Robarts. “And in longer-term studies, Nobiletin also protected these animals from atherosclerosis, the buildup of plaque in arteries, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke. This study really paves the way for future studies to see if this is a suitable treatment for metabolic syndrome and related conditions in people.”
Substance in tangerines fights obesity and protects against heart disease [University of Western Ontario]