Beneficial Effects of Quercetin on Obesity and Diabetes

Aguirre, Leixuri; Arias, Noemi; Macarulla, M. Teresa; Gracia, Ana; Portillo, Maria P.
January 2011
Open Nutraceuticals Journal;2011, Vol. 4, p189
Academic Journal
Scientific research is constantly looking for new molecules that could be used as dietary functional ingredients in the fight against obesity and diabetes, two pathologies highly prevalent in Western societies. In this context, flavonoids represent a group of molecules of increasing interest. The major flavonoid is Quercetin, which belongs to the class called flavonols and is mainly found in apples, tea, onions, nuts, berries, cauliflower, cabbage and many other foods. It exhibits a wide range of biological functions including anticarcenogenic, anti-inflammatory and antiviral; it also inhibits lipid peroxidation, platelet aggregation and capillary permeability. This review focuses on the main effects of Quercetin on obesity and diabetes. The mechanisms of action explaining the effects of Quercetin on these two metabolic disturbances are also considered. Good perspectives have been opened for Quercetin, according to the results obtained either in cell cultures or in animal models. Nevertheless, further studies are needed to better characterize the mechanisms of action underlying the beneficial effects of this flavonoid on these pathologies. Moreover, the body fat-lowering effect and the improvement of glucose homeostasis need to be confirmed in humans. Animal studies have consistently failed to demonstrate adverse effects caused by Quercetin. In contrast, due to inhibitory effect of Quercetin in cytochrome P450, interactions with drugs can be taken into account when they are administered at the same time than Quercetin.


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