Filipino Student Scientist Finds Potential Type 2 Diabetes Cure in Tropical Fruit

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By Mayukh Saha / Truth Theory

A student from the Philippines has wowed the world with her discovery! She has discovered the magical properties of Aratiles fruit that could potentially help combat type 2 diabetes.

This silent scourge of the modern world kills more than any other disease on the earth. In the Philippines alone, the number of patients afflicted by diabetes is expected to grow to 7.8 million by the year 2030, reports ABS-CBN. She is among the growing tribe of young scientists who believe that we need to get off the medical system into the self-care system to combat these lifestyle diseases.  

Maria Isabel Layson is among the winners at the National Science and Technology Fair for 2019 held in February this year.

She is also among the 12 deserving candidates invited to the International Science and Engineering Fair in Phoenix, Arizona, USA. She will represent her country, the Philippines in perhaps the largest competitions for pre-college students in the field of scientific research. She is the first from her group to be honored with the Gokongwei Brothers Foundation Young Scientist Award.

Maria’s study, which she did independently, was titled “Bioactive Component, Antioxidant Activity, and Antidiabetic Properties of Muntingia calabura Linn. An In Vitro Study”. It is in this study that she has come upon the possibility of this fruit as a cure for diabetes. She has presented an in-depth study of Aratiles as a permanent cure for type 2 diabetes. This fruit grows naturally all over her country, the Philippines.

This fruit is a very inexpensive method to combat diabetes she says. Every part of the Aratiles tree is edible including the leaves, branches, and flowers and is helpful in combating the disease as they all consist of antioxidants that help cure diabetes.

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Diabetes or diabetes mellitus is a silent killer. This metabolic disease causes a spike in blood sugar levels. This is because the body does not make sufficient insulin or can’t effectively use the insulin made by the body. This hormone helps to move sugar from the blood to the cells where it is stored as energy. If diabetes is left untreated it can damage the eyes, kidneys, nerves and a host of other body organs.

Aratiles is also found in many countries and is known as Panama berry, bolaina yamanaza, Jamaican Cherry, Singapore cherry, and many other names. In the Philippines alone it is known by several other names such as kerson, datiles, manzanitas, etc.

Maria discovered that though the plant is being studied for more than 2 decades, its full potential has not been realized. She went several times to the Food and Nutrition Research Institute Laboratory and eventually discovered that the Aratiles fruit is a rich source of antioxidants and can practically be used to effectively prevent type 2 diabetes through the prevention of postprandial hyperglycemia.

She says that her research will continue. She wants to develop more specific compounds to help combat the killer disease. She also plans to delve into other diseases, reports Asia Times. She wants to help people fight this disease. Maria is part of the pioneering batch of students who won the Gokongwei Brothers FoundationYoung Scientist Award. 

This foundation along with the Department of Education sponsored the Filipino delegation to attend the 2019 ISEF. At the 2019 National Science and Technology Fair, hosted by DepEd, Marie also was the winner of the Best Individual Research in Life Science.


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