herbal treatment for Diabetes

Herbal Treatment

herbal treatment for Diabetes


People used to die young until 1921, when Banting and Best isolated fairly pure insulin solving the problem of diabetes treatment. But insulin is no cure, because the patient needs daily injections for the rest of his life. To be sure, a dose of insulin is no more a permanent cure of diabetes than a drink of water is a permanent cure of thirst; but while the effect lasts the cure is complete and the patient is in all respects healthy.

After insulin many synthetic e.g., tolbutamide, phenorformin etc. are prepared but have temporary effects and also not free from side reactions. So, plants were tried and found useful and cheap in controlling the diabetes and that too without any side effects. Overall treatment is based on the following points:

·         Avoid sugar, fat and starchy food material.

·         The food habits should be regulated after urine examination (normal blood sugar level is 80-120 mg/ 100 cc of blood).

·         Weight should be gradually reduced if over-weight. Regular use of anti-diabetic drugs.


·         Long morning walk is essential.

·         Avoid injuries because healing is slow in diabetics.

·         Take wholesome granular food items: Chana, Jau, Pulses etc.

·         Restrict day sleep, rather avoid it.

·         Eat light foods, that too in small shifts.

Role of Plants

1. Momordica charantia, Linn.

Family   - Cucurbitaceae               

Names - Hindi        - Karela

                 English     - Bitter Gourd

               Sanskrit    - Karavella

                Bengali      - Karela

               Marathi    - Karle

               Kannada   - Hagal

                Tamil        - Pakal, Pavakka

             Malayalam  - Kaippakaya

Description: It is a climber, stem is slender pubescent with suborbicular leaves and single pale flowers. Fruits are 5-25 cm long, pendulous, fusiform, beaked and ribbed with many tubercles. Brown seed, 13-16 cm long compressed in bulb of fruit.

Distribution: Plant is cultivated during hot season and available in Indian market as vegetable.

Parts used: Roots, leaves and fruits.

Phytochemicals: Different types of compounds have been isolated viz., bitter glycosides, saponins, alkaloids, reducing sugars, phenolics, oils, free acids, polypeptides, sterols, 17-amino acids including methionine and a crystalline products named p-insulin,

Vitamins - B1, B2 and C

Minerals - Calcium, phosphorous, iron, copper and potassium.


Hypoglycemic (reducing sugar in the blood), astringent (arresting secretion), anti-haernorrhoidal (tending to arrest or prevent bleeding), stomachic (promoting digestion improve appetite), emmenagogue (inducing menstruation), galactogogue (increase the secretion or flow of milk), hepatic stimulant, anthelmintic (power to destroy worms) and blood purifier.

Forms of use: In form or juice, decoction (in liquid form after boiling), and powder.

Medicinal uses

(a) In Diabetes

Bitter gourd (Karela)is the most efficient drug found to be effective in controlling the blood sugar. A lot of work has been done to study hypoglycemic and anti-diabetic activity of Karela. Its root leaves and fruit extracts are used as folk remedy for diabetes mellitus from ancient times and proved to be powerful hypoglycemic agents. It is used in the various forms as written below:

i. 100 gm. of fresh Karela powder in a divided dose two times for 2 weeks bring down sugar level consider- ably.

ii. Juice of its leaves or concentrated extract has same hypoglycemic properties like tolbutamide. So juice of Karela two tablespoonfuls two times for a month controls diabetes.

iii. A mixture of Jamun, Gurmar, Neem and Karela (leaves only) in the ratio 2:1:1:2 is found to be effective remedy for diabetes.

(b) Other uses

The roots are used as astringent and in piles. The fruits are stomachic and also used in gout, rheumatism and in liver and spleen diseases. Fruit juice with sugar used in stomatitis (inflammation of the mucous membrane of the mouth) and as an emmenagogue in dysmenorrhoea (pain occurring in the back and lower abdomen at or about the time of the menses).

The juice of leaves is used as an emetic (producing vomiting), purgative (promotes evacuation of the bowel) in bilious affections and also in relieving burning of the soles of the feet. The fruits and leaves are used as anthelmintic and also in piles, jaundice and as vermifuge (any substance which causes the expulsion of parasitic worms). Leaves act as a galactogogue (secretion of milk). The leaf juice with black pepper is applied locally for night blindness. The fruit juice given for 3 days (25 ml) once in the morning is said to exert contraceptive effect.

Doses-Juice 10-15 ml, Powder 2-5 g.

2. Pterocarpus marsupium, Roxb

Family   - Fabaceae

Names - Hindi                 - Vijaisar kaashtha

                English              - Indian kinowood

                Sanskrit              -Pitasala  Asana, Sarfaka

                 Telugu                               - Paiddagi Chekka

                 Marathi               - Biyala lakda

                 Tamil                  - Vegaimaram chakkal

               Trade name      - Bijaisaar Kaashtha

Description: A moderate to large tree about 90 ft or more high. Leaves compound, having 5-7 leaflets, 3 to 5 inch long, oblong or elliptic, margin wavy, flower about 1.5 cm long, yellow in colour.

The heartwood of this tree is golden yellow. Tree bark yields a reddish gum called kino, the trade name.

Distribution: The tree is common in central and peninsular India, found at 3000 ft in Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Sub-Himalayan Tract. Also available in Indian Market.

Phytochemicals: Glycosides, flavours, terpenes, phenols.

Parts used: Bark, gum, flowers, leaves, heartwood.


Astringent, alterant (A drug which corrects, or is presumed to correct disordered bodily function), hypoglycemic.

Medicinal Uses

(a) In Diabetes

1. The tree has been regarded as useful in diabetes from ancient time. The water, in which a block of wood of this tree has been soaked overnight is given to diabetic patients.

2. Water stored overnight in a tumbler made of this wood has shown anti-diabetic properties. People often seen using such tumbler for drinking water.

3. Decoction of bark 56 to U2 ml once in the morning for 10-15 days is useful in controlling diabetes.

4. Powdered bark 3 to 6 g or extracted juice 125 mg 2/3 times after meals control diabetes.

5. Powdered bark 5 g left overnight in a cup of water. Next day, water is decanted and taken on empty stomach in the morning for 10 days checks diabetes. Promising results have been reported with regard to reduction in the sugar levels in blood and urine.

(b) Other Uses

The gum (Kino) which is obtained from incisions in bark is astringent (a substance that shrinks soft tissues and contracts blood vessels thus checking the flow of blood) and used in leucoderma, diarrhoea, pyrosis (heart burn; gastric hyperacidity) and toothache. Bruised leaves are used externally for boils, sores and various skin diseases. It promotes the complexion of the skin. The flowers are used in fevers. The plant is considered to be useful by santhal tribals in burns, syphilis, stomachache, cholera, dysentery and menorrhagia (Excessive or prolonged periods).


Decoction            - 50 to 100 ml

Powder                - 3 to 6 g

Extracted Juice - 125 mg

3. Syzygium cumini, (Linn) Skeels

                Family   : Myrtaceae

                Names : Hindi                - Jamun

                                English              - Black berry

                                Sanskrit             - Jambul

                                Bengali                              - Kalijaam bija

                                Kannada            - Koddanirlu kalu

                                Marathi                - Jambhul chabi

                                Gujarati                - Jambunu bija

                                Tamil                   - Sambal virat

                                Telugu               - Naredu vittulu

                             Trade name       - Jambul stone

Description: A large evergreen tree, leaves opposite, 8- 20cm long, leathery. Fruit 1.5-4 cm long, violet black on ripe. Seed usually one. Fruits are eaten raw with salt, make tongue purple for hours.

Distribution: Grown throughout the plains of India.

Parts used: Fruits, leaves, seeds and bark.

Properties: Astingent, stomachic, diuretic (increases the amount of urine), anti-diabetic and anti-diarrhoeal.

Phytochemicals: Phenols, terpenes, glucoside.

Medicinal Uses

(a) In diabetes

1. The seeds are useful in diabetes. The fruit juice also has this property but the effect of preparations from seeds is more marked.

2. Aqueous extract of seeds produced marked fall in blood sugar in a single dose.

3. Jamun's vinegar is also useful in controlling diabetes. Regular use is recommended with both the meals.

4. Use of mixture prepared by mixing dried fruit of Karela (lag), Pterocarpus bark (lag) and Jamun seed (lag). After proper grinding take water extract of 2/3g of this powder to keep diabetes at bay.

(b) Other Uses

The bark is astringent and used in sore throats, indigestion, loss of appetite, leucorrhoea (A discharge of white from uterus and the vagina), bronchitis, asthma, ulcers and dysentry; it is also given for purifying blood, and as gargle for spongy gum. The fresh juice of bark with goat's milk is given in diarrhoea. Ripe fruit can also check diarrhoea.


Juice                     50 to 100 m1

Bark Powder       0.5 to 1.0 g

Seeds                   1.0 to 3.0 g

Other Useful Plants

·         Azadirachta indica (Neem) extract also' has marked hypoglycemic properties.

·         Gymnema sylvestre (Gurmar) Leaf material stimulates insulin secretion and has blood sugar reducing properties.

·         Tenospora cordifolia (Gilo) enhances glucose utilization' and checks release of glucose from the liver.

·         Casearia esculenta (Chilla) increases the utilization of glucose by the body.

·         Ficus bengalensis (Bargad) sap of this tree is effective in controlling the diabetes and increasing capacity of pancreatic cells.

·         Coccinia indica (Bimbi) plant reduces blood sugar.

·         Helicterus isora (Mororphali) decoction or juice of root bark given in diabetes to lessen -the quantity of sugar.

·         Catharanthus roseus (Sadabahar, Violet Flowers) also possesses hypoglycemic properties. Five leaves three times a day keeps diabetes in control.

·         Luffa acutangula (Turai) is also useful in diabetes as it reduces the level of sugar.

·         Lawsonia inermis (Mehndi). The seed extract is a proven remedy for diabetes.

Plants helping the diabetics indirectly (because diabetes may lead to the conditions like hyper-lipidaemia, arthosclerosis and mycordial infraction etc.) are Trichosanthus dioca (Parval), Gyamposes tetragoloba (Juar) Plumago zeulanica (Chitrak), Boswellia serrata (Bhilawan) and Commiphora mukal (Gum Guggul) which lowers down the total cholesterol when taken over a period of time.

Diabetes that starts in middle age is generally a much milder disease. The patient is commonly overweight when first symptoms appear. Overeating brings diseases like obesity, diabetes, hyper-lipidaemia, arthosclerosis, coronary heart disease and other maladies. Diabetes is incurable but a managable disease, often strikes late in one's life. The reason behind it is the limited supply of effective insulin. By eating less one can keep well because his diet will remain within the limit of what his own insulin can manage.

Diabetes can only be controlled by adopting an optimistic view on life and by following a good diet regimen and exercise.

As it is rightly said, "When people tell you diabetes cannot be controlled, ask them to go and take a walk". Even the ,simplest form of exercise, like walking helps to control diabetes. Exercise improves metabolism which in turn leads to better control of glucose. It also helps to reduce weight and lowers blood pressure-which is commonly elevated in diabetics. More importantly, exercise can facilitate reduction of insulin dosage and other oral drugs. Along with regular exercise you must also control your diet. And remember to substitute your sugar with aspartame-based sweeteners. So, control the urge to take a cab for short distances. Walk instead. You could be walking away from diabetes.


Ayurvedic         -Madhumeha

Unani                -Dolabi

Homeopathic -Uranium drops, 5-10 drops in half cup water 3 times daily.


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