We evaluated the effects of supplementation of L-alanine and L-glutamine on blood glucose levels and biochemical parameters in alloxan-induced diabetic rat. Forty-nine animals were distributed into seven equal groups. Except for the non-diabetic control, diabetes was induced in all groups by intravenous alloxan injection followed by daily supplementation with amino acids for 14 days. Weight and blood glucose were monitored during supplementation, while biochemical parameters such as liver and renal functions, lipid profile, and antioxidant markers were evaluated post-intervention. A significant increase (p < .05) in weight and decrease in blood glucose were observed in the amino acid(s) treated groups. The supplementation with both amino acids restored important tissue antioxidants, liver and kidney functions and rescued islets cells degeneration. Histopathological examinations of important tissues showed the restoration of alloxan-induced physiopathological changes by the amino acids. Thus, these amino acids might serve as nutraceuticals for the management and treatment of diabetes. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS: The discovery and production of antidiabetic bioactive compounds are often challenging, and the existing antidiabetic drugs are expensive. Amino acids are key regulators of glucose metabolism, insulin secretion, and insulin sensitivity; thus, they can play a crucial role in alleviating diabetes. Here, we present findings that strongly suggest the potential of pure amino acids (L-alanine and L-glutamine) for the management and treatment of diabetes. We show that these amino acids, when supplemented singly or coadministered can lower blood glucose levels and restore several other biochemical parameters implicated in diabetes. Hence, these cheap amino acids may be consumed as nutraceuticals or food supplements by diabetics for the treatment/management of diabetes. Foods rich in these amino acids may also be consumed as part of the diet of diabetic patients.
Keywords: L-alanine; L-glutamine; antioxidants; diabetes mellitus; hypoglycemic agents.
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