If you like to drink, or you’re a fan of being healthy, then you’re probably aware that those two don’t really make much of a cocktail. However, it’s thought that in some circles, there is a link between the consumption of tequila and dropping off a few pounds. This definitely sounds pretty far-fetched, right? Still, it wouldn’t be the first time that alcohol has been rumored to have positive effects on the health. With that in mind, however, it’s worth noting that the supporting information regarding tequila and its role in losing weight could stand to be much more substantial.
Now, alcohol certainly isn’t about to win any awards for any health benefits it might provide, even if we’re disregarding the harmful effects that come with drinking it in excess; furthermore, it definitely should not be your go-to choice for any particular nutrient, once again, due to harmful effects of drinking in excess. All that being said, when it comes to tequila, it is believed that certain components in the drink can prove beneficial, perhaps even especially so to diabetics. This theory comes primarily as a result of certain research that has been brought forth by the American Chemical Society.
To put it simply, according to the researchers, the primary plant that is used in tequila, otherwise known as the agave plant, is the reason behind tequila’s purported health benefits. The agave plant has certain natural sugars that can help to keep blood sugar levels down. The reason for this is that the aforementioned sugars, known as agavins, are not something that can be digested by humans. Because of this, the agavins serve instead as a form of dietary fiber that does not result in an increase in blood sugar levels.
For some readers, the term ‘agavin’ may sound somewhat familiar; this is especially likely if you’ve heard of agave syrup. However, agavin and agave syrup, while they come from the same plant, are two separate things. They have different properties and should definitely not be confused; for instance, agavins help to regulate blood sugar levels much better than agave syrup, at least according to the aforementioned research. Comparatively speaking, agavin is also less sweet in flavor than agave syrup and other sweeteners, whether they are artificial or all natural.
Setting aside the potential diabetic benefits, however, it is believed that there are other possible advantages provided by tequila, or more accurately, agavin. For example, there is some thought that agavin and sugars like it can help the growth of microbes in the body, which would then lead to better immune health and digestion. Furthermore, it is thought that agavins can help to curb the appetite. Feelings of satiety would then theoretically lead people to eat less, and in eating less, they would lose weight. Perhaps more importantly, these effects are thought to come without negative side effects, although there is room for more information.
It is quite unfortunate that at this point, the tests which have provided us with this somewhat promising news regarding tequila have only been performed on mice thus far; this means that researchers have conducted no such trials on humans as his point in time. Because of that, there is really no way to tell how little or how greatly test results will vary. There is a fair possibility that the effects of agavins on the human body may end up differing quite considerably from the effects so far revealed in relation to mice. But hey- we can always raise a toast to hope, right?
Specifically, the study consisted of researchers feeding different groups of mice one of a variety of sweeteners, a list which included glucose, fructose, sucrose, agave syrup, aspartame, and of course, agavins. The researches supplied these sweeteners to the groups of mice via water, in addition to feeding them an otherwise standardized diet. In the end, researchers came to the conclusion that compared to the mice that were consuming the other sweeteners, the group of mice who were receiving agavins ended up eating less food and losing more weight. Additionally, their blood sugar levels decreased.
While this may end up translating into good news for us humans, there are other factors which could stand in the way of us reaping the weight loss benefits of agavins. This has to do largely with the relationship of agavins and tequila; while tequila is made from the agave plant, tequila itself does not function exceptionally strong as a delivery of agavin benefits. In the end what does this mean? Taking tequila *may* help you toward your health goals, but for the benefits of agavin, you may be better off going straight to the source. Or, you could meet in the middle and trade the lime on you tequila/margarita for a slice of agave instead.
In the end, tequila is probably not going to be the center of your weight loss strategy; however, it may be a little less detrimental to said strategy than previously believed. There’s still a lot of room for research, and clinical trials in humans may offer different results from those of the mice, but until such a time, there is some promise. In the meantime, it’s definitely much better to stick to a healthy diet and regular exercise to drop those pounds; there are medications, supplements, and even natural remedies which can help suppress your appetite, if you need to.