Is Banaba Leaf Good For Diabetes? – DIABETIC SOCK CLUB

Is Banaba Leaf Good For Diabetes?

Commonly known as “Lagerstroemia Speciosa,” banaba leaves and flowers are natural herbal supplements that are suitable for a wide variety of health issues and offer many benefits. Since ancient times, people use them as ayurvedic medications and herbal supplementation (nutrition) for various health conditions. Typically, herbal supplement extractors focus on the bark and leaves of the banaba tree.

These trees are native to the regions of Southeastern and Southern Asia, such as Australia, India, and Pakistan. The white and light yellow color powder from the banaba trees may have anti-bacterial properties. As they have been in use since ancient times, there are speculations that banaba leaves can help with chronic health issues such as blood sugar levels, etc.

Moreover, they are rich in soluble fiber content that enhances blood sugar absorption in the body. Despite the speculations and its history as folk medicine, is it a good treatment option for diabetes in modern times? Well, below, we will discuss all the properties and potential anti-diabetic effects of banaba in light of recent researches.

Uses of Banaba Leaves

Banaba leaves are a highly sought-after herbal ayurvedic medicine in Southeast Asia regions such as India. In natural terms, nearly all parts of the banaba provide relief from some symptoms and offer benefits. Moreover, some studies suggest the bark of the banaba tree is a good option to treat diarrhea. 

They provide evidence that banaba tee extracts have pain-relieving and analgesic properties. Out of the 40 chemically active compounds in banaba, some are more beneficial than others. These include the ellagic and corosolic acids that carry potent energy and chemical ability to improve blood sugar levels (lowering them). 

Are Banaba Leaves Anti-Diabetic? 

Various researches and studies will help you understand the effects of banaba’s natural medicinal properties. Here are some of the potential research-backed health benefits of banaba as an anti-diabetic treatment option.

  • Banaba Leaves and Blood Sugar Levels

  • The first and foremost reason for the popularity of banaba leaves is their ability to regulate blood sugar levels and act as an anti-diabetic agent inside the body. There are three main chemical compounds in banaba that are responsible for this effect. They are ellagitannins, corosolic, and gallotannin acid.

    Corosolic acid agents lower and regulate the blood sugar levels by establishing certain effects that include enhanced glucose uptake, higher insulin sensitivity, and inhibition of a digestive enzyme (alpha-glucosidase).

    You may know that the insulin hormone regulates the blood sugar levels in the body. Following that, if you have diabetes (type 2), your body requires this hormone more, which the pancreas is rarely able to meet.

    For that reason, insulin resistance results in higher blood sugar levels that can cause serious health issues in a short period. Moreover, in a clinical trial study with 31 adult diabetic patients, the effects of corosolic acid were noticeable. After receiving a single 10-milligram capsule of corosolic acid, they reported lower blood sugar levels within 1 to 2 hours. There were various other substances such as flosin B, reginin A, Lagerstroemia, and ellagitannins that improved the blood sugar levels in the patients.

  • Further Research for Banaba Leaves and Blood Sugar Levels

  • That’s not all – banaba’s chemical compounds also increase the glucose intake in the body. They activate the GLUT4 (type 4 glucose transporter) that carries the proteins from the bloodstream to the fat cells and muscles.

    Further research shows more evidence that gallotanins can activate and stimulate the protein transporting cells inside the body. There are studies and evidence that confirm gallotanin from banaba is higher in stimulatory activity in comparison to other chemical compounds.

    While there are promising results and anti-diabetic effects of banaba on humans struggling with type-1 and type-2 diabetes, there are still some aspects to explore. There is always a combination of compounds or herbs that aids banaba in its effectiveness. While there is a large number of studies and research, there is still a lack of substantial evidence on the effects of banaba leaves alone that would suggest otherwise. 

  • Banaba Leaves and Lower Heart Disease Risks

  • Diabetes often brings other health conditions, including high blood cholesterol, which is a risk factor for many heart diseases. Did you know that high blood cholesterol has been the leading cause of death in the United States of America? Therefore, high blood cholesterol is a cause of major concern.

    Human and animal clinical trials prove that PGG and corosolic acid in banaba may help to lower blood cholesterol and improve triglycerides levels. Moreover, one study allowed feeding a high-cholesterol diet to mice and then using corosolic acid to treat them.

    Surprisingly, there was a significant reduction in the blood cholesterol levels of mice (up to 30 percent). On the other hand, there was also a reduction in the liver cholesterol amount as well.

  • Banaba Leaves and Potential Anti-Obesity Effects

  • Obesity is often linked with weak blood arteries and vein systems that can affect the blood sugar and cholesterol levels in the body. Thus, it can be a major cause of diabetes in people. Are you aware that over 44% of American adults struggle with obesity? It can lead to chronic health diseases.

    Many research studies suggest that banaba leaves can inhibit the production of the chemical compounds that may produce excessive fat molecules and cells. These include lipogenesis and adipogenesis. PPG in the banaba leaves can prevent the formation of mature fat cells. Despite all the evidence, there is still a need for extensive human research to confirm the effects.

  • Banaba Leaves and Antioxidant Properties

  • One of the main chemical properties of banaba leaves is the antioxidant activity that it exhibits inside diabetic patients and otherwise. In case you don’t know, banaba can restrict the free radicals in the body, which are the culprits of the long process, chronic diseases such as diabetes.

    Free radicals harm protein and fat metabolism along with our DNA. Hence, the anti-diabetic effect of banaba leaves can inhibit the production of free radicals. What’s more, its antioxidants can improve your pancreas health by preventing damage from free radicals. 

    In a clinical trial study of rats, 68mg of banaba leaves for each pound of body weight of rats helped to neutralize free radicals along with controlling antioxidant enzymes. Again, there is a lack of human trials to determine the antioxidant properties of banaba leaves.

    How Do You Consume Banaba Leaves for Anti-Diabetic Effects?

    The normal consumption method of the banaba leaves comprises herbal teas (that include banaba leaves as well). Moreover, apart from herbal tea, there are also capsules and powder forms that may help in delivering the anti-diabetic effect to patients.

    In a controlled study, researchers found that 32- to 48 milligrams of banaba leaves’ capsules with no more than 1 percent of corosolic acid may help in lowering the blood sugar levels. However, you should know that there is still a lack of human trials and studies to suggest the dosage levels. 

    Hence, consulting your healthcare provider may help in determining what form and how much of banaba leaves may be beneficial for your diabetic condition.

    What else do Banaba Leaves Offer?

    Besides the anti-diabetic effects, there are several other benefits that banaba leaves may provide.

    • Banaba leaves may help in dissolving the blood clots in a patient’s body that cause high blood pressure and strokes
    • Interestingly, there was evidence that banaba leaf extracts could potentially help with the death of liver and lung cancer cells.
    • Furthermore, the anti-bacterial properties of banaba leaves can help alleviate the symptoms of chronic bacterial infections and may even inhibit their progression.
    • Chemotherapy can damage the internal organs. However, banaba leaves can help improve kidney conditions and prevent further damage from chemotherapy.

    Precautions- Potential Side Effects of Banaba Leaves

    In reality, the banaba leaves are safe for use for humans as well as animals. Nevertheless, it is also evident that banaba leaf extracts can substantially lower blood sugar levels, which can lead to the worsening of the diabetic condition. Using these herbal supplements with other foods can also result in low blood sugar levels.

    Moreover, those who are allergic to Lythraceae family fruits need to careful to avoid any health concerns. Therefore, they should intake banaba leaves after professional consultation and guidance. One study reported that an adult suffered kidney damage after consuming banaba leaves with diclofenac.

    Altogether, it’s your responsibility to take care of your medication plans, overall well-being, and diabetic symptoms. Therefore, consult your primary healthcare provider before you start using banaba leaves for diabetes or other health issues.

    Conclusion

    Now, you know about the blood sugar regulation abilities of the natural herb supplement, banaba leaves. So, make sure to reach out to your professional healthcare provider to see that no underlying medical conditions or medicines/prescriptions will interfere with the chemical activity of banaba leaves.

    With antioxidant properties and anti-diabetic effects of banaba leaves, a diabetic patient can substantially improve their condition.

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