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Blood Sugar Breakthrough

Have you been battling elevated blood sugar levels for some time now?  Nearly half of American adults have insulin resistance, which means blood sugar (glucose) levels and the corresponding hormone insulin are elevated. Over time, insulin levels increase as cells become “resistant” to this glucose-transporting hormone. Additional signs and symptoms of insulin resistance include:

  • Elevated triglyceride level
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Low HDL cholesterol
  • Waistline greater than 40 inches in men and 35 inches in women
  • Skin tags


Americans Overwhelmed with Glucose Problems

Moreover, more than 1 in 3 American adults have prediabetes where the fasting glucose is 100 mg/dL to 125 mg/dL or the hemoglobin A1C (average of glucose levels over 2-3 months) is 5.7 or higher. In addition, researchers have found that approximately 40% of American adults 18 to 44 years of age have insulin resistance without diabetes. Nearly half of those with insulin resistance were not obese (as measured per body mass index (BMI).

What are the root causes of insulin resistance?

  • Overweight, especially increased abdominal fat
  • A diet high in carbohydrates, especially refined grain
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea
  • High stress
  • Toxin exposure

Consider This Before You Start Metformin and Other Drugs

One of the most common drugs prescribed for prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes is Metformin (Glucophage). More than 90 million prescriptions of this drug are given by doctors each year in the United States. As far as pharmaceuticals go, it has a decent track record. However, before I prescribe this drug, I prefer diet and lifestyle changes, detoxification, and the use of well-studied nutraceuticals. Metformin's common side effects include headache, muscle pain,  weakness, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, gas, or stomach pain. In addition, a severe condition known as lactic acidosis can occur with the drug, scaly in people with kidney disease. Before starting pharmaceuticals for your blood sugar issues, check with your practitioner about diet and lifestyle changes along with a natural alternative to Metformin, known as Berberine.

Blast Blood Sugar with Berberine

Berberine is a natural compound with a long history of use in herbal therapy to reduce glucose and insulin levels. It is found in plants such as barberry, Oregon grape, tree turmeric, and others. 

Some exciting studies have been done comparing the effectiveness of berberine to that of Metformin for people with Type 2 diabetes. 

Study 1

80 people with Type 2 diabetes were given berberine (480 mg) or metformin (1000 mg) daily for 3 months. Conclusion: Berberine was as effective as metformin in reducing blood glucose and controlling type 2 diabetes. Both groups lost weight.

Study 2

A systematic review and meta-analysis of 37 studies involving patients with Type 2 diabetes and berberine supplementation, which lasted 14 days to 6 months, concluded that berberine was statistically significant for reducing fasting glucose A1C levels.

Study 3

A systematic review and meta-analysis of 18 studies involving metabolic disorders and berberine supplementation concluded:

  • Can improve obesity
  • Improve hyperlipidemia (reduce triglycerides, total cholesterol, LDL, and increase HDL)
  • Reduce insulin resistance to improve type II diabetes
  • Prevent diabetic encephalopathy (brain swelling)
  • Improves liver enzymes and Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease in Type 2 diabetes patients

Drop Weight with Berberine

Several studies have demonstrated that berberine aids weight loss. For example, A systematic review and meta-analysis of 12 studies (most were 3 months in duration) assessing obesity found that berberine supplementation:

Moderately but significantly decreased body weight by a 4.6 pound difference, reduced waist circumference by 0.43 inches, and improved body mass index. In addition, the inflammation biomarker C Reactive Protein (CRP) was reduced by an average of 0.42 mg/L.

Interestingly, researchers in the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology reported that berberine reduces the activity of genes involved in fat formation and increases gene activity in fat metabolism. Moreover, berberine activates a chemical messenger known as AMPK, which increases energy production.

Lower Lipids

Since many people who have insulin resistance, prediabetes, and Type 2 diabetes have elevated lipids. Berberine has been shown in several studies to:

  • Reduces LDL 20 to 50 mg/dL
  • Reduces triglycerides 25 to 55 mg/dL
  • Lowers total cholesterol and increases HDL

Berberine's mechanism of lipid-lowering is different from that of statin drugs. It increases the uptake of LDL cholesterol by LDL receptors and inhibits the intestinal absorption and uptake of cholesterol.

Revolutionary Technology

I have used Berberine with good results throughout the years. However, I recently secured a technology that improves berberine absorption up to ten times that of regular Berberine! This allows me to help patients achieve therapeutic effects with lower doses of Berberine in my product, Berberine Wellness. In just two capsules a day, we can achieve what would take many capsules of a regular berberine product. The problem with regular Berberine is its bioavailability of less than 1%. Fortunately, I have the technology to overcome this problem. See the chart below from a study examining the bioavailability of regular Berberine and our highly absorbable Berberine in human volunteers in a published study. Treatment A is regular Berberine, Treatment B is one dose of high-absorbable Berberine, and Treatment C is two doses of high-absorbable Berberine. 

Safety

An analysis of 27 randomized control trials reported no profound adverse effects during treatment. Occasionally, patients report digestive upset from Berberine supplementation, which may be prevented by taking Berberine with food. An interesting study found that berberine has beneficial effects on the gut microbiome.

Dosage

For regular Berberine, a typical dose is 1500 mg to 2000 mg daily (usually 3 to 4 capsules). With our Berberine Wellness, the usual dose is 2 capsules daily.

Shop Berberine Wellness & other Stengler Health Products at https://drstengler.com

Dr. Mark Stengler NMD, MS, is a bestselling author in private practice in Encinitas, California, at the Stengler Center for Integrative Medicine. His newsletter, Dr. Stengler’s Health Breakthroughs, is available at  www.markstengler.com and his product line at www.drstengler.com

References

Asbaghi, O., Ghanbari, N., shekari, M., Reiner, Ž., Amirani, E., Hallajzadeh, J., Mirsafaei, L., & Asemi, Z. (2020). The effect of berberine supplementation on obesity parameters, inflammation and liver function enzymes: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Clinical Nutrition ESPEN, 38, 43–49. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clnesp.2020.04.010 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022, December 30). Prediabetes - your chance to prevent type 2 diabetes. https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/basics/prediabetes.html#:~:text=Approximately%2096%20million%20American%20adults,%2C%20heart%20disease%2C%20and%20stroke. 

Cunha, J. Glucophage, glucophage XR (metformin hcl): Side effects, uses, dosage, interactions, warnings. Glucophage. https://www.rxlist.com/glucophage-drug.htm#description 

Koppen, L. M., Whitaker, A., Rosene, A., & Beckett, R. D. (2017). Efficacy of Berberine Alone and in Combination for the Treatment of Hyperlipidemia: A Systematic Review. Journal of evidence-based complementary & alternative medicine22(4), 956–968. https://doi.org/10.1177/2156587216687695

Metformin prescriptions number U.S. 2004-2021. Statista. https://www.statista.com/statistics/780332/metformin-hydrochloride-prescriptions-number-in-theus/#:~:text=Number%20of%20metformin%20prescriptions%20in%20the%20U.S.%202004%2D2021&text=In%202004%2C%20metformin%20was%20prescribed,treatment%20of%20type%202%20diabetes. 

Parcha, V., Heindl, B., Kalra, R., Li, P., Gower, B., Arora, G., & Arora, P. (2022). Insulin Resistance and Cardiometabolic Risk Profile Among Nondiabetic American Young Adults: Insights From NHANES. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism107(1), e25–e37. https://doi.org/10.1210/clinem/dgab645

Petrangolini, G., Corti, F., Ronchi, M., Arnoldi, L., Allegrini, P., & Riva, A. (2021). Development of an Innovative Berberine Food-Grade Formulation with an Ameliorated Absorption: In Vitro Evidence Confirmed by Healthy Human Volunteers Pharmacokinetic Study. Evidence-based       Complementary and Alternative Medicine : eCAM2021, 7563889. https://doi.org/10.1155/2021/7563889

Sanjari, M., Shamsinejad, B., Khazaeli, P., Safi, Z., Mirrashidi, F., & Naghibzadeh-Tahami, A. (2020). Safety and efficacy of Berberis integerrima root extract in patients with type 2 diabetes. A parallel intervention based triple blind clinical trial. Journal of diabetes and metabolic disorders19(1), 71–80. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40200-019-00478-z

Statistics about diabetes. American Diabetes Association. (2022). https://diabetes.org/about-diabetes/statistics/about-diabetes 

Wang, H., Zhu, C., Ying, Y., Luo, L., Huang, D., & Luo, Z. (2017). Metformin and berberine, two versatile drugs in treatment of common metabolic diseases. Oncotarget9(11), 10135–10146. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.20807

Xie, W., Su, F., Wang, G., Peng, Z., Xu, Y., Zhang, Y., Xu, N., Hou, K., Hu, Z., Chen, Y., & Chen, R. (2022). Glucose-lowering effect of berberine on type 2 diabetes: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Frontiers in pharmacology13, 1015045. https://doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2022.1015045

Ye, Y., Liu, X., Wu, N., Han, Y., Wang, J., Yu, Y., & Chen, Q. (2021). Efficacy and Safety of Berberine Alone for Several Metabolic Disorders: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials. Frontiers in pharmacology12, 653887. https://doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2021.653887

Zhang, L. S., Zhang, J. H., Feng, R., Jin, X. Y., Yang, F. W., Ji, Z. C., Zhao, M. Y., Zhang, M. Y., Zhang, B. L., & Li, X. M. (2019). Efficacy and Safety of Berberine Alone or Combined with Statins for the Treatment of Hyperlipidemia: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Clinical Trials. The American journal of Chinese medicine47(4), 751–767. https://doi.org/10.1142/S0192415X19500393

Zhang, L., Wu, X., Yang, R., Chen, F., Liao, Y., Zhu, Z., Wu, Z., Sun, X., & Wang, L. (2021). Effects of Berberine on the Gastrointestinal Microbiota. Frontiers in cellular and infection microbiology10, 588517. https://doi.org/10.3389/fcimb.2020.588517