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Clin Nutr Res. 2014 Jul;3(2):89-97. doi: 10.7762/cnr.2014.3.2.89. Epub 2014 Jul 29.

Effects of Korean White Ginseng (Panax Ginseng C.A. Meyer) on Vascular and Glycemic Health in Type 2 Diabetes: Results of a Randomized, Double Blind, Placebo-controlled, Multiple-crossover, Acute Dose Escalation Trial.

Author information

1
Risk Factor Modification Centre, St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. ; Department of Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
2
Risk Factor Modification Centre, St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
3
Risk Factor Modification Centre, St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. ; Department of Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. ; Keenan Research Centre of the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Abstract

Korean red ginseng (steam treated Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer), among most prized traditional herbal remedies, has been clinically shown to improve cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors. Whether this holds true for the dried non-steamed variety, known as Korean white ginseng (KWG) is unclear. This study therefore, investigated the efficacy and safety of escalating doses of KWG on vascular and glycemic parameters in type 2 diabetes (T2DM). Using an acute, randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, crossover design, 25 participants with well-controlled T2DM (12-males: 13-females, age: 63 ± 9 years, A1c: 6.9 ± 0.7%, BMI: 29.3 ± 4.3 kg/m(2)) underwent five visits during which they received 1 g, 3 g, or 6 g KWG or 3 g wheat-bran control (twice) together with 50 g-glucose load. For the duration of 240 minutes, augmentation index (AI), and central blood pressure were measured at baseline and at 60 min-intervals, and ambulatory blood pressure was assessed at baseline and at 10 min-intervals. Additionally, capillary blood was collected at time zero and at 15, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, and 180 minutes post-treatment. A symptoms questionnaire was used to assess safety and adverse events. Two-way ANOVA demonstrated a significant time-treatment interaction effect on AI (p = 0.01) with one-way ANOVA showing significant reductions in AI with 3 g KWG relative to control (p = 0.04). Compared to control, acute administration of KWG appeared to be safe, but did not affect any other postprandial, vascular or glycemic parameters. KWG might have a beneficial effect on AI, a cumulative indicator of arterial health. However, these results are preliminary and highlight the need for long-term investigation with a focus on its accountable components.

CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION:

NCT01699074.

KEYWORDS:

Augmentation index; Clinical trial; Korean white ginseng; Postprandial blood glucose; Type 2 diabetes

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