One of the best ways to know if a supplement is working for you is if taking the supplement allows you to cut back on drugs that have a similar action. For instance, taking nattokinase will allow you to cut back on aspirin (most can stop taking aspirin completely). In some cases, taking the supplement will force you to cut back on the medication, as taking both at full strength can have harmful effects. If you're diabetic, there's a fruit that's gaining attention for its ability to help many people cut back on their anti-diabetes medications.
The reason this fruit is gaining attention is because of its ability to lower blood sugar. And many doctors have noticed that patients taking glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (DiaBeta, Glynase PresTab, Micronase), insulin, metformin (Glucophage), pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), and others need to lower their doses of these drugs when eating the fruit.
The fruit is the Indian gooseberry, also known as amalaki, amla, or the amla berry. It is a small to medium-sized deciduous tree native to India. The Indians like to eat the fruit raw and use it as an ingredient in their cooking. But it also has solid medicinal research behind it.
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In several studies, including animal and in vitro studies, researchers found that the Indian gooseberry inhibits the release of inflammatory cytokines. As you may know, these are a primary cause of insulin resistance. It also lowers blood sugar.
But Indian gooseberry doesn't just fight diabetes from a sugar and insulin angle. It also prevents a lot of the damage diabetes can cause to your cardiovascular system. Diabetics are at a significantly higher risk for atherosclerosis and heart attack than people without diabetes. And Indian gooseberry is very effective at inhibiting atherosclerosis. It does so by alleviating oxidation injury and by inhibiting the damage that oxidized-LDL causes. It also acts much like aspirin and natto, in that it has a strong anti-clotting effect on the blood. All of these go a long way to preventing heart attacks and stroke.
Unfortunately, not all Indian gooseberry products are made with the same high-quality standards. A study conducted back in 2008 found that a proprietary form of amla called Capros® is far more consistent in its ability to stop oxidative stress and these other diabetic conditions than other brands. The reason is that most companies just pick any Indian gooseberries for their products. But there are many factors that contribute to the nutrient density of a fruit. So the manufacturers of Capros put their Indian gooseberries through a rigorous selection and quality control process. The manufacturer says this helps them “ensure that the essential bioactive components are standardized and delivered at optimal levels."
Fortunately, you can find Capros amla in the new Advanced Bionutritionals' Advanced Blood Sugar Formula. The formula couples Capros amla with many other powerful diabetes-busting nutrients that can help you fight this difficult condition. It might even help you cut back on your diabetes medications. Make sure you talk to your doctor if you take any of the medications I mentioned earlier. Your doctor should be able to monitor your progress with the supplement and begin to wean you off of the medication.
Your insider for better health,
Steve Kroening is the editor of Nutrient Insider, a twice-a-week email newsletter that brings you the latest healing breakthroughs from the world of nutrition and dietary supplements. For over 20 years, Steve has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Robert Rowen, Frank Shallenberger, Nan Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.
Sabu, M. C. and Kuttan, R. Anti-diabetic activity of medicinal plants and its relationship with their antioxidant property. J Ethnopharmacol. 2002;81(2):155-160.