Sugarcane Extract: Can It Improve Gut, Heart And Mental Health?


A new Australian study is looking at the powerful properties of sugarcane extract and its potential to improve not just our gut and heart health but our mental health too.

The Deakin University research team is currently recruiting participants to take part in the innovative fully remote trial, with the aim to encourage people who normally have difficulty accessing clinical trial sites.

Dr Dan Dias from Deakin’ CASS Food Research Centre said the sugarcane derived extract developed by Human Health and Wellbeing Pte. Ltd. is high in natural polyphenols which are known to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

‘Previous research has demonstrated the benefits of polyphenols, which are naturally found in highly coloured fruits and vegetables as well as tea, coffee and dark chocolate, and surprisingly high levels of polyphenols are found in sugarcane extract too,’ Dr Dias said.

‘The extract is a natural by-product from sugarcane; with less than 5% sugar remaining in the product after the patented extraction process.

‘We think there may be broader benefits of including the unique polyphenols found in sugarcane into the human diet, but this trial is an important step forward that evaluates these potential benefits with a world-class scientific study.

‘Polyphenols have been shown to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation which may prevent or alleviate chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, osteoporosis, diabetes, and neurodegenerative conditions like Alzheimer’s disease.

‘In this study, we hope to see an improvement in people’s overall health, including gut microbiota, blood glucose control and heart health, as well as self-described mental health.’

Dr Dias said the fully remote randomised control trial will require participants to take a daily dose of sugarcane extract or a placebo for three months, followed by a subsequent three-month period where conditions are reversed. Throughout the trial, participants will collect all their own samples in the convenience of their own home.

The researchers are looking for participants aged 18 to 55 years with no history of heart disease, high blood pressure or diabetes.

Dr Dias said it was the first time the benefits of a supplement had been investigated in this way.

‘We hope this study points a way forward for clinical trials, so they are no longer just for people living in cities, who have the time and availability to participate. We believe this approach will drive the future of health and wellbeing.’

Participants will receive a $50 gift voucher and a final report on their health markers valued at $700.

/University Public Release. View in full here.