Gymnema: Ayurvedic Herb For Diabetes and Blood Sugar Control

Gymnema: Ayurvedic Herb For Diabetes - HSP Health Blog

Gymnema sylvestre R.Br © by lalithamba

 

Are you under a lot of stress?

Is the stress you experience chronic?

Are you also a highly sensitive person?

Why HSP’s Can Suffer From Diabetes

Diabetes is a risk for people who suffer from chronic stress because chronic stress keeps the body’s digestive system out of balance. Stress puts the body into a state of emergency that can raise blood sugar levels.  Over  a long period of time, elevated blood sugar can caused permanent damage to the body.

Highly sensitive people are stress magnets. Their sensitivity, deep processing and empathetic nature make it hard for them not to be stressed out. This means that their entire lives, they can be at risk for getting diabetes.

How Ayurveda Can Help Highly Sensitive People Control Blood Sugar

It is an excellent idea for HSP’s to work at controlling their blood sugar. One natural way to control blood sugar is the herb gymnema silvestre.  The Ayurveda Encyclopedia names gymnema the main Ayurvedic herb for treating diabetes.

Gymnema works directly on the pancreas to remove sugar, stimulate pancreatic function, improve circulation and help urine output.

Gymnema also reduces excess kapha (which is the body system in Ayurveda in charge of body structure.  It is often associated with obesity.) and vata (the body system responsible for the nervous system). When the Vata nervous system is upset by stress or other factors an individual will eat erratically and often the wrong food. Poor eating habits can help diabetes to develop.

Benefits Of Gymnema

Gymnema has many benefits that can help people suffering from diabetes and the symptoms of excellive stress:

  1. gymnema heals skin disorders and infections which are a known complication of diabetes
  2. it ignites digestion and treats all metabolic disorders including diabetes which means it can help pre diabetics
  3. it may be regenerative of pancreatic beta cells which means that it may offer diabetics the potential to restore pancreatic insulin production according to Ayurvedic Diet Solutions.
  4. it reduces sugar taste in the mouth and therefore reduces sugar cravings which are very harmful to diabetes and people suffering from stress related obesity
  5. it may block the assimilation of sugar.  According to WiseGeek, “the unique shape of gymnemic acid molecules are similar to that of glucose, allowing it to fill cell receptors in the lining the intestines, thereby preventing uptake of sugar molecules.”

Gymnema – A Time Honored Herbal remedy

Gymnema silvestre has a long history of helping diabetic patients in India.  It is now making its way to the West as an herbal solution for treating diabetes, metabolic disorder and is also used as a staple in some detoxification programs.  Gymnema is available in a pill form making it easier to use than insulin.

In some cases gymnema may alleviate the need for insulin supplementation. It is a promising treatment for diabetics that is worth looking into because it is relatively inexpensive, and easy to use. Although not recommended for pregnant and lactating women, this herb has proven to be safe over a long period of time.

Research On Gymnema Benefits For Diabetes

Gymnema has been used by Ayurveda for centuries to help manage blood sugar and manage diabetes.  Western medicine has become interested in this herb and has begun investigating its benefits.  Here are links to some of the studies that bear out that gymnema does in fact lower blood sugar and improve pancreatic function:

  1. A novel Gymnema sylvestre extract stimulates insulin secretion from human islets in vivo and in vitro.
  2. In vitro callus and in vivo leaf extract of Gymnema sylvestre stimulate β-cells regeneration and anti-diabetic activity in Wistar rats.
  3. A novel dihydroxy gymnemic triacetate isolated from Gymnema sylvestre possessing normoglycemic and hypolipidemic activity on STZ-induced diabetic rats.
  4. Gymnema sylvestre for diabetes mellitus: a systematic review.
  5. An overview on the advances of Gymnema sylvestre: chemistry, pharmacology and patents.
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Control Blood Sugar With Gymnema

Gymnema sylvestre R.Br © by lalithamba

One natural way to control blood sugar is the herb gymnema silvestre, which is the main Ayurvedic herb for treating diabetes according to the Ayurveda Encyclopedia.

Gymnema removes sugar from the pancreas, stimulates pancreatic function, helps circulation and facilitates urine excretion.

Gymnema acts to reduces excess kapha (dosha in charge of body structure and lubrication and associated with obesity) and vata (the dosha responsible for movement and the nervous system). Vata imbalances created by stress can promote poor eating habits which can cause diabetes to develop.

Gymnema heals skin disorders and infections, ignites digestion and treats all metabolic disorders including diabetes. It is believed to be regenerative of pancreatic beta cells which means that it may offer diabetics the potential to restore pancreatic insulin production according to Ayurvedic Diet Solutions.

A number of studies demonstrate an increased awareness on the part of the medical research community that gymnema silvestre can help with diabetes treatment. According to WiseGeek, “the unique shape of gymnemic acid molecules are similar to that of glucose, allowing it to fill cell receptors in the lining the intestines, thereby preventing uptake of sugar molecules.” In addition, there is much evidence that gymnema silvestre gets rid of sugar tastes in the mouth reducing sugar cravings.

Gymnema silvestre has a long history of helping diabetic patients in India, a history that is making its way to the West.  Gymnema is available in a pill form making it easier to use than insulin.  In some cases it may alleviate the need for insulin supplementation. Gymnema is a promising treatment for diabetics that is worth looking into because it is relatively inexpensive, and easy to use. Although not recommended for pregnant and lactating women, this herb has proven to be safe over a long period of time.

Gymnema has been used by Ayurveda for centuries to help manage blood sugar and manage diabetes.  Western medicine has become interested in this herb and has begun investigating its benefits.  Here are links to some of the studies that bear out that gymnema does in fact lower blood sugar and improve pancreatic function:

  1. A novel Gymnema sylvestre extract stimulates insulin secretion from human islets in vivo and in vitro.
  2. In vitro callus and in vivo leaf extract of Gymnema sylvestre stimulate β-cells regeneration and anti-diabetic activity in Wistar rats.
  3. A novel dihydroxy gymnemic triacetate isolated from Gymnema sylvestre possessing normoglycemic and hypolipidemic activity on STZ-induced diabetic rats.
  4. Gymnema sylvestre for diabetes mellitus: a systematic review.
  5. An overview on the advances of Gymnema sylvestre: chemistry, pharmacology and patents.

Breakthrough In Diabetes Treatment

Mouse embryonic stem cell growing on mouse embryonic feeder cells © by CodonAUG

Article first published as Breakthrough in Diabetes Treatment on Technorati.

There is new hope for diabetics, according to the Neural Stem Cell Transplant May Tackle Diabetes report in ScienceDaily on October 14, 2011. Researchers in Japan have found a way to regenerate the beta cells of the pancreas, which makes possible a long awaited cure to this devastating disease that affects as many as 200 million people on our planet. The research finding were published in EMBO Molecular Medicine on October 6.

Insulin dependent diabetics are plagued by insufficient insulin production in the pancreas, the organ responsible for sugar management. The pancreas is a shaped like a fish and located behind the stomach in the abdomen. Insulin is produced by beta cells which are located in the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas.

Diabetes treatment has been hindered by the low donations of pancreatic beta cells to regenerate the beta cells. Researchers in Japan have found a creative solution to the problem using neural stem cells. The research which was conducted at the AIST Institute in Tsukuba, Japan was led by Dr. Tomoko Kuwabara. Human stem cells can be differentiated which means that there is a process though which stem cells can be adapted to different  cell replacement roles in the body. This techniques is particularly useful in situations which target a single cell as in the case of diabetes. ”As diabetes is caused by the lack of a single type of cell the condition is an ideal target for cell replacement treatments,” said Kuwabara.

The research transplanted cells from the hippocampus and olfactory bulb in the front of the brain into a diabetic rat. The cells then began to act like beta cells of the pancreas. They produced insulin and when removed, the rat’s sugar levels rose again. Since these brain cells do not normally produce insulin, the results were a pleasant surprise because they demonstrated that the brain cells could be an effective treatment for diabetes.

Science Daily noted the encouraging peer response to the research results: “The discovery of stem cells which have virtually unlimited self-renewal raises great expectations for their use in regenerative medicine. The isolation and cultivation of stem cells as a renewable source of beta cells would be a major breakthrough,” wrote Onur Basak and Hans Clevers, from the Hubrecht Institute for Development Biology and Stem Cell Research, in their close up paper, published in the same issue of EMBO Molecular Medicine.

Not only does this research provide great hope for diabetics but it also offers new hope for many others suffering from diseases created by non functioning cells like diabetes.  It is truly a breakthrough which will be welcomed by many.