Mexican scientists are investigating the potential benefits of the blue agave plant in treating chronic pain.
More and more Americans are dealing with chronic pain, with reports estimating that by 2030, 60% of all Baby Boomers will be managing a chronic condition.
Osteoporosis, a disease that erodes the strength of bones is one example, affecting 200 million people worldwide.
Known for being the main ingredient in the manufacturing of tequila, the blue agave plant may help to maintain bone health leading to a new basis for osteoporosis treatments.
Researchers tested this theory in mice, inducing osteoporosis by removing their ovaries. The animals were then given agave fructans, the polymers that store carbohydrates in some fruits and vegetables.
After eight weeks, femur samples were tested in order to assess the absorption of minerals and osteocalcin, which is an important protein that induces new bone production.
According to a report from Newsmax Health, Dr. Mercedez Lopez, lead investigator of the research, stated, “It was found that mice that consumed this fructans synthesized nearly 50 percent more of such protein, in addition that the diameter of their bones was higher compared with the subjects which were not supplied with derivatives of the agave.”
When these substances reach the large intestine track, they interact with the microbiota living there to become short-chain fatty acids. They go on to catch minerals in the tract and help transport them through the cells.
Lopez says that this gives scientists a second chance to take advantage of the nutrients that were no longer available to the body due to osteoporosis.
Because of these findings, researchers have the potential to provide the opportunity to develop an alternative treatment method for the disease.