A review on the role of antioxidants in the management of diabetes and its complications

Diabetes is a prevalent systemic disease affecting a significant proportion of the population worldwide. The effects of diabetes are devastating and well documented. There is increasing evidence that in certain pathologic states, especially chronic diseases, the increased production and/or ineffective scavenging of reactive oxygen species (ROS) may play a critical role. High reactivity of ROS determines chemical changes in virtually all cellular components, leading to lipid peroxidation. Production of ROS and disturbed capacity of antioxidant defense in diabetic subjects have been reported. It has been suggested that enhanced production of free radicals and oxidative stress is central event to the development of diabetic complications. This suggestion has been supported by demonstration of increased levels of indicators of oxidative stress in diabetic individuals suffering from complications. Therefore, it seems reasonable that antioxidants can play an important role in the improvement of diabetes. There are many reports on effects of antioxidants in the management of diabetes. In this paper, after complete bibliography and criticizing all relevant articles, the relationships between diabetes and oxidative stress and use of antioxidants in the management of diabetes and its complications have been well reviewed. This review well indicates that oxidative stress is involved in the pathogenesis of diabetes and its complications. Use of antioxidants reduces oxidative stress and alleviates diabetic complications.