Herbs for Diabetes

Since antiquity, herbs have been used to treat diabetes symptoms and root causes. Particularly in Chinese medicine where such common plants as dandelion and licorice root as well as ginseng has been used for centuries. Herbs for diabetes, when used under the care of a naturopathic practitioner can quite possibly cure Type I Diabetes and hold off the onset of Type 2 Diabetes. Other herbs for diabetes are efficacious in treating symptoms rather than root causes.

Generally, any herb that strengthens the pancreas or liver will be helpful for diabetes treatment. Herbs for diabetes include Pterocarpus Marsupium, Gymnema Silvestre, Momordica Charantia, Allium Cepa, Allium Sativum, Trigonella Foenum-Graecum, Vaccinium Myrtuillus, Asian Ginseng, Bilberry, Stevia, Ginkgo Biloba, cinnamon and barberry.

Pterocarpus Marsupium is also known as Dragon’s Blood, Kino, Pitasara and Venga. The gum resin of this Indian tree has the look of dried blood, hence the name. An alcohol extract of the resin and the flavonoid epicatechin extracted from the bark of the tree both have been shown to prevent pancreatic alpha cell damage in rats and to actually regenerate beta cells. These pancreatic cells directly or indirectly control metabolic processes to balance glucose in the blood stream.

Gymnema Silvestre reduces the desire for sweets. It helps in the production of insulin in Diabetes Type 2 and reduces the blood sugar levels for both types 1 and 2. 500 mg per day of Gymnema extract is a substitute for oral medications to lower blood sugar for both Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes.

Momordica Charantia or bitter melon is also known as balsam pear. It is widely cultivated in Africa, Asia and South America as a vegetable and as a diabetes treatment. Several compounds in bitter melon are confirmed as effective in treatment of diabetes. Charantin is a hypoglycaemic agent; Momordica contains a polypeptide which is confirmed by clinical trials to reduce blood sugar when injected subcutaneously.

Allium Cepa and Allium Sativum are respectively onion and garlic. Both foods are helpful in diabetic treatment plus have the added benefits of being beneficial in treating cardiovascular problems. Both substances lower blood sugar levels.

Trigonella Foenum-Graecum is also known as Fenugreek. Fenugreek contains an anti-diabetic compound via the defatted portion of the seed.

Vaccinium Myrtuillus is commonly called blueberry. A concoction of the leaves of the blueberry plant injected is only slightly less effective but less toxic than insulin. Its beneficial effects can last several weeks. The active ingredient is myrtillin, used to improve the functioning of the vascular system and effective in preventing diabetic retinopathy—an eye disorder associated with diabetes.

Each of the other herbs for diabetes mentioned above is helpful in treating particular symptoms of the disease. Particular mention should be made of barberry—one of the best liver tonics available and cinnamon which make insulin three times as effective as without the use of cinnamon.

Continuing research into the use of herbs for diabetes may well result in a cure for the disorder. In the meantime these herbs for diabetes have been shown to be helpful in treating the disease or its symptoms.