Frog skin and lizard spit?

April 29, 2008

No it’s not an attempt to take you into Shakespearean realms with the Witches in Macbeth, but what is actually being touted as the latest treatment for diabetes. There is a growth market in diabetes because it has reached epidemic proportions, and the buzz word in all product areas at the moment is ‘natural’ but in this instance, happily for the frogs, the scientists have yet again identified an active natural ingredient and then set to and produced a synthetic version. No problem for that on the frog front, but this is exactly what happened with white willow bark whose active ingredient is salicylic acid and together with all its other component parts helps cure headaches. Science isolated the salicylic acid and gave us aspirin, but without the natural buffering ingredients that ensured that it didn’t upset the stomach.

So what’s so special about frog skin? Researchers found that a substance, called pseudin 2, secreted in the skin of the South American shrinking frog stimulates the release of insulin in the body. From there, they created a pseudo-pseudin that they claim has the same benefits and no side effects. The researchers also claim that the synthetic version of pseudin is actually better than the natural version.  Well that’s what they said about aspirin, and if this goes on that poor shrinking frog is going to shrink out of existence as they keep using it for research.

Type 2 diabetes can be handled through managing diet and lifestyle, unless you really want to kiss a frog or deprive it of its skin?


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