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J Am Pharm Assoc (2003). 2014 Sep-Oct;54(5):e304-18; quiz e319-21. doi: 10.1331/JAPhA.2014.14537.

Natural products for the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus and comorbid conditions.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To provide pharmacists with practical information to guide consumers in their choices of herbal products and dietary supplements for the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and its comorbid disease states.

SUMMARY:

The herbal and dietary supplement market has grown exponentially over the past decade as Americans increasingly use such agents for generalized health and the prevention and treatment of chronic disease states.1 Pharmacist advice is often requested on the use of these agents for the management of T2DM; however, this is an area that has insufficient evidence to support confident recommendations. Many published studies involving herbal agents and dietary supplements are small and poorly designed, with heterogeneous results. Pharmacists should be aware of the safety and efficacy data available for these agents, recognize potential drug interactions, and identify acceptable manufactured products.

CONCLUSION:

The strongest scientific evidence for blood glucose lowering effect is associated with alpha-lipoic acid and fenugreek. There is also good evidence supporting the use of ivy gourd, gymnema, and vitamin E for management of hyperglycemia; however, caution should be used when recommending vitamin E. Pharmacists should advise consumers to disclose use of any of these products to all of their health care providers.

PMID:
25107389
DOI:
10.1331/JAPhA.2014.14537
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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