Sucrose in modulating endothelial function

Efficacy of isomaltulose compared to sucrose in modulating endothelial function in overweight adults

Publication Highlights

Main authors

Eric de Groot, Lisa Schweitzer and Stephan Theis

Study population


overweight and obese subjects with mild hypertension



Publication date


December, 31st

Publication Overview

Hyperglycemia is linked to impaired arterial endothelial function (EF), an early sign of cardiovascular disease. We compared the efficacy of low‐glycaemic index isomaltose (Palatinose™)with that of sucrose in modulating EF, as assessed by flow‐mediated dilation (FMD). In this double‐blinded cross‐over study, 80 overweight mildly hypertensive subjects were randomized to receive50 g of either isomaltose or sucrose. On two non‐consecutive days, brachial artery ultrasound FMD scans were obtained prior to and hourly (T0–T3) after carbohydrate load. Blood was drawn immediately after scanning. Glucose and insulin levels were analyzed. Overall, the FMD decrease was attenuated by isomaltose compared to sucrose (ΔFMD = −0.003% and −0.151%; p > 0.05 for the interaction treatment x period). At T2, FMD was significantly higher after isomaltose administration compared to that after sucrose administration (FMD = 5.9 ± 2.9% and 5.4 ± 2.6%, p =0.047). Pearson correlations between FMD and blood glucose showed a trend for a negative association at T0 and T2 independently of the carbohydrate (r‐range = −0.20 to −0.23, p < 0.1). Sub‐analysis suggested a lower FMD in insulin‐resistant (IR) compared to insulin‐sensitive subjects. Isomaltose attenuated the postprandial decline of FMD, particularly in IR persons. These data support the potential of isomaltose to preserve the endothelial function postprandially and consequently play a favourable role in cardiovascular health.

Publication results

In our study, we evaluated the efficacy of isomaltose (Palatinose™) and sucrose loads on endothelial function as assessed by brachial ultrasound flow‐mediated dilation. Our findings show that low‐GI isomaltose, compared to sucrose, led to a better preservation of the basal, pre‐prandial, endothelial function in the postprandial phase. Particularly, persons with impaired insulin sensitivity seemed to benefit from the slow‐release carbohydrate isomaltose. Replacing sugar with isomaltose may exert beneficial effects on cardiovascular health as a result of the more balanced and sustained blood glucose profile. The impact of continued isomaltose consumption on endothelial function merits further investigations.


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