Diabetes, especially type 2, has become a growing concern across the globe. It was found by World Heath Organization (WHO) that the number of people with this chronic disease shot up from 108 million in 1980 to more than 420 million in 2014. As per WHO, over 95 percent of people with this disease have type 2 diabetes. So, researchers have been working on different treatments for diabetes. Sadabahar, which is also known as Catharanthus roseus, is a herb that many believe helps in controlling diabetes. Let’s find out if sadabahar is good for diabetes.
For long, sadabahar has been used in Ayurveda and Chinese medicine, and is claimed to be a herbal remedy for diabetes, as per International Journal of Pharmacognosy and Life Science. It has been found that the ethyl acetate fraction of the ethanolic extract of the herb has the best glucose lowering effect.
To know more, Health Shots connected with Mumbai-based Ayurveda expert Dr Lakshmi Varma K and Dr Vyankatesh Shivane, Consultant Diabetologist and Metabolic Physician, Jaslok Hospital and Research Center Mumbai.
Sadabahar for diabetes
Sadabahar has been a subject of several research studies for its anti-cancer, antioxidant and anti-diabetic activities. Dr Varma says it is a flowering plant with numerous active principles, of which a few alkaloids have been shown to be helpful in treating many cancer-like conditions. Its other chemical constituents are useful for hypertension and diabetes. Dr Shivane says that it can be tried, but should be done only under supervision of his or her treating physician or diabetologist. The long-term efficacy and safety of sadabahar is still awaited. So, if you are planning to use it as a treatment for a family member then consult a doctor.
Is sadabahar good for people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes is a status of absolute insulin deficiency. There is no question of use of anything other than insulin in type 1 diabetes, says Dr Shivane. But in early stages of Type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes, this can be tried, but only under supervision of a qualified physician. He stresses that what they practice is “evidence-based medicine”, and so, they need to have much more evidence through properly designed, multi-centred, randomised controlled trials with sadabahar leaves and flowers. The results must not be only effective in controlling blood sugar, but it should be safe also to use for people without any harm to kidneys, heart, liver or other body organs. If sadabahar passes these tests, it may be useful for a mass population with Type 2 diabetes.
Tips to use sadabahar for diabetes
Leaves and flowers of sadabahar have been used for diabetes management, and here’s how you can use them!
• You can use juice from the leaves, roots or the whole plant, and give it to your family member with diabetes.
• Let your loved one with diabetes chew 5 to 6 leaves of sadabahar.
• They can use powder form of dried leaves too.
• You can also boil 8 to 10 flowers of sadabahar with water to make a tea and give it to them.
Who should avoid sadabahar?
Before you use this plant for your diabetic family member, you should know that it should be used cautiously, especially by people who are prone to ulcers and gastritis. That’s because of its hot potency. Moreover, due to its numerous active principles, Dr Varma says that it should not be consumed by pregnant and lactating women.
You basically need to use sadabahar with caution!