Jiaogulan – A Promising New Herb for Diabetics
Jiaogulan – A Promising New Herb for Diabetics
Many herbs are used and studied around the world to help in the fight against diabetes.
However, few, if any, show as much promise as a recently discovered Chinese “miracle herb” called Jiaogulan (pronounced gee-ow-goo-lan).
The Jiaogulan plant (Gynostemma pentaphyllum) is unique in many ways when compared to other herbs, including anti-diabetic ones.
While most plants with anti-diabetic properties will simply reduce blood sugar levels temporarily, many different studies are indicating that Jiaogulan may not only be able to help reduce blood glucose levels and improve insulin sensitivity in the body for the long term, but also has many additional benefits that can be invaluable for anyone suffering from diabetes.
What is Jiaogulan?
I discovered Jiaogulan while living abroad in Thailand, not long after my father was diagnosed with pre-diabetes 2 years ago.
Like many people today, my dad wanted to avoid taking pharmaceutical drugs for as long as possible.
Despite his doctor’s recommendation to start on Metformin, my father wanted to try a natural approach first.
He knew that pharmaceutical drugs have many side-effects and can be potentially harmful.
In addition, they are expensive and are a one-way street – once you start taking them, it is usually for life.
I wholeheartedly agreed with him, so I set out to find out if there were any home or herbal remedies that the Thai locals were using to fight diabetes.
Thailand is a country where traditional and herbal medicine is widely practiced, and Thai people in general tend to use herbal remedies to treat a variety of diseases.
I started asking around and soon enough came across a herb called Jiaogulan, or Gynostemma pentaphyllum, which is still virtually unknown around the world (being discovered by science only around 40 years ago), yet it was very highly regarded by the locals.
They called it the “Herb of Immortality”, because of its many health benefits and a folk legend that people who drink it on a regular basis tend to live to very old age and in excellent health.
One of the herb’s numerous claimed benefits was that it can be used in the treatment of diabetes.
What I heard intrigued me and so I started to research this plant both on the Internet and in the scientific literature.
I was surprised to find that there has been a lot of scientific interest and research on Gynostemma since its modern-day discovery over 40 years ago.
This interest was due to the fact that Jiaogulan contains the largest variety of a class of plant chemicals known as saponins of any other plant in the world.
These saponins give many medicinal plants, like Ginseng for example, their therapeutic properties.
However, while Panax ginseng (one of the richest in saponins plants) contains around 28 different saponins, Jiaogulan is known today to contain at least 174 of them – over 6 times as many!!
After 3 months of research and examining over 300 published scientific studies on the plant’s medicinal properties, I realized that Jiaogulan could potentially be very beneficial to people suffering not only from diabetes, but a large number of other conditions and diseases.
It became obvious that it may well be one of the healthiest plants on the planet!
Here is what Dr. Jialiu Liu, the leading scientific researcher for the Chinese government, had to say about it:
Jiaogulan [is] an herb from my native southern China that I believe possesses the most wide-ranging benefits for human health and wellness of any plant yet discovered. This may seem like a bold statement, but having studied this remarkable tonic herb for more than twenty years, I can assure you that there is strong scientific support to back up my passion for jiaogulan.Dr. Jialiu Liu, Leading Scientific Researcher of Jiaogulan for the Chinese Government
How Does Jiaogulan Work?
There are two root causes for the onset of diabetes: insufficient production of the hormone insulin by the pancreas, and/or the inability of cells in the body to use insulin properly (insulin resistance).
Both lead to increased glucose levels in the blood.
Over time, elevated concentrations of blood glucose result in damage to nerves and blood vessels, leading to complications such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and lower-limb amputations.
A number of human and animal studies show that Jiaogulan might be able to significantly lower blood sugar and glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1C) levels in a relatively short period of time, both as a standalone therapy and in combination with an anti-diabetic drug.
Evidence suggests that Jiaogulan may also be able to reduce the 30 and 120-minute post-load values of an oral glucose tolerance test.
The human studies concluded that Jiaogulan is mainly able to lower blood sugar by significantly improving the insulin sensitivity of the cells.
Although not yet confirmed by human studies, there is much evidence from animal studies to suggest that Gynostemma may also able to increase blood insulin levels and to stimulate the pancreas to produce more insulin.
In addition to potentially attacking the underlying causes of diabetes, studies have indicated that Jiaogulan may have strong protective effects on the cardiovascular system, the nervous system, the liver and kidneys from both diabetic and non-diabetic damage.
Finally, there have been NO instances of hypoglycemia ever recorded in any Jiaogulan study. The herb has an effect on blood sugar ONLY IF levels are too high.
So let’s take a look at the actual studies.
These results indicate that Jiaogulan may be beneficial to all diabetic patients, regardless of whether they choose a standard drug treatment or an all-natural one.
All 3 studies examined above concluded that the lower FPG levels were due to an improvement in insulin sensitivity, which was at least partially due to the suppression of protein-tyrosine phosphatase non-receptor type 1 (PTP-1B) – an enzyme which plays a key role in insulin resistance.
While the results from these studies are already very encouraging, please keep in mind that the longest human study duration was of only 12 weeks.
Taking Jiaogulan on a daily basis for longer periods may possibly yield even better results.
It is important to note that Jiaogulan is a natural herb that is potentially very beneficial to people suffering from type-2 diabetes, but without any of the drawbacks of pharmaceutical drugs:
Safe to Use
Jiaogulan has NO negative side effects aside from rare cases of temporary nausea. It has been repeatedly shown to be completely non-toxic and safe for long-term use. It does not cause hypoglycemia (below normal blood glucose level), because it is an adaptogen that has a strong balancing effect on the body. It will act to lower blood glucose only if your level is above normal.
In addition to attacking diabetes on multiple levels, protecting your body from diabetic damage, and increasing your energy levels, Jiaogulan may be beneficial to MANY aspects of your health, including the cardiovascular system, brain and nervous system, liver, kidneys, immune function, lungs, and skin. There is abundant evidence that it has anti-cancer, anti-aging, anti-stress, and anti-anxiety effects, and may also promote weight loss, balance blood pressure and cholesterol, help with depression, and more.
Jiaogulan is inexpensive – a single pack is usually enough for one month of daily usage. However, if you are a diabetic and want to see quicker results, the dosage/concentration should be increased. In that case, 3 packs of tea should be sufficient for 2 months of use. That still adds up to less than $30 per month.
Easy to Use
Using Gynostemma is as easy as brewing a tea that is pleasant and mild, in taste similar to that of green tea. If brewing a tea is still too much hassle for you, or you just don’t have enough time in the day, you can always take Jiaogulan in capsule form to experience the same benefits.Life for a diabetic is already difficult enough and we want to make it easier, not harder!
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