July 22, 2018

A study published recently in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine revealed that Winged Prickly Ash (scientific name: Zanthoxylum armatum), a popularly known medicinal herb in East Asia, can be used to prevent and treat diabetes.

These findings were arrived at by a group of researchers at COMSATS University and The Islamia University of Bahawalpur Pakistan. The team evaluated the antidiabetic and biochemical effects of winged prickly ash extracts in lab mice.

The research group started the study by collecting the extracts of winged prickly ash from its bark, leaf, and fruit, and tested them for their alpha-glucosidase inhibition activity. Alpha-glucosidase is a key enzyme in digesting carbohydrates and converting them into simple sugars such as glucose. On the other hand, alpha-glucosidase inhibitors delay the absorption of glucose.

Next, the researchers induced diabetes among the mice by injecting alloxan monohydrate. They then gave the mice an antidiabetic drug called glibenclamide at a dose of 10 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) or winged prickly ash leaf, bark, or fruit extracts at a dose of 500 mg/kg for 15 days.

The researchers induced diabetes in mice by injecting alloxan monohydrate. They then gave the animals an antidiabetic drug called glibenclamide at a dose of 10 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) or winged prickly ash fruit, bark, or leaf extracts at a dose of 500 mg/kg for a period of 15 days.

The Encouraging Findings

Results indicated that the winged prickly ash leaf and bark extracts showed the most powerful alpha-glucosidase inhibition activity. Moreover, all the winged prickly ash extracts greatly lowered fasting blood glucose levels in the mice, with the leaf extract showing the most powerful effect. This effect proved the hypoglycemic nature of the extracts, meaning the leaf extract lowers the blood sugar content in the blood.

In addition, the winged prickly ash treatments greatly improved the mice’s cholesterol, blood hemoglobin, and triglycerides, as well as creatinine and urea, which are indicators of impaired renal function. The extracts also reduced the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) level in diabetic mice, indicating a hypolipidemic effect, meaning it lowers the levels of lipids (fats) in the blood.

Based on the findings of the study, the research group concluded that the extracts of winged prickly ash contain significant antidiabetic properties, thereby, they can be used in treating and preventing diabetes.

Tips on How to Prevent Onset of Diabetes

The Dr. Farrah Agustin-Bunch Natural Medical Center advocates for an “all-natural, plant-based, and organic” way of living and treating ailments and diseases. One of the things we advise patients is to “Go Natural”! Here are some of the ways to do that:

* The first thing to do is follow a healthy diet full of vegetables, fruits, vegetables, healthy fats, and whole grains. Also, allocate at least 30 minutes daily for physical activity, maintain a healthy weight, and keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels in check. These are just some of the best ways to prevent or reduce your risk of diabetes.

* Several natural herbs, spices, and substances can also help you lower your risk of diabetes. Try incorporating these in your daily regimen:

  • Cinnamon – In a 2009 study, it was discovered that taking cinnamon regularly could mitigate the risk factors associated with diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
  • Tea – A 2009 review of studies with more than 300,000 participants discovered that drinking more than four cups of tea every day may lower the risk of type 2 diabetes. Other studies also suggest that green tea might help prevent diabetes, while black tea may help in diabetes management.
  • Vitamin D – A study of more than 80,000 women who imbibed a combined daily intake of more than 1,200 mg of calcium and more than 800 International Unit (IU) of Vitamin D was linked with a 33% lower risk of type 2 diabetes. This was in comparison to a combined daily intake of less than 400 IU of vitamin D and less than 600 mg of calcium.

What do you think of the winged prickly ash as an alternative medicine for diabetes? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.