Diabetes Type II and Berberine: Dosage and Research

| Modified: Apr 01, 2021
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Beberine for Diabeters

by Art Solbrig
March 25, 2020

Diabetes is a common disease that affects many Americans, and 90 to 95% of people with diabetes have Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus ("T2DM").

I will be discussing T2DM and one herbal option to help deal with it effectively based on multiple studies. Since Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) is significantly less common, I will focus this discussion on Type 2 Diabetes.


T2DM occurs in 1 out of 10 in the US, while pre-diabetes occurs in 1 in 3, illustrating what a considerable health concern T2DM is. (1)

Treating T2DM effectively early in the disease process can go a long way in preventing many of the health complications seen in advanced stage T2DM, which can be very disabling.

Today, I would like to discuss the supplement Berberine and the studies that show how it can help fight against Type II Diabetes through multiple methods of action.

Berberine for Type II Diabetes

1. In this first study, Berberine shows somewhat similar effects as the common T2DM drug, Metformin.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29515798/

2. The following study is interesting because it shows that Berberine can also protect against Metformin-associated lactic acidosis (MALA).

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5478779/

3. The next study abstract shows that Berberine lowers blood glucose in T2DM patients by increasing insulin receptor expression.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19800084/

4. In this study, Berberine is shown to be synergistic with Metformin, where both together are better than either one alone at lowering high glucose induced lipogenesis. For those who are not familiar with Metformin, it is considered a first line pharmaceutical for treating T2DM. Here is a quote from the study:

>>> The combination of Metformin and Berberine exerted synergistic lipid-lowering effects on HepG2 cells by reducing total lipid content, triglyceride level, and the expression of the genes involved in lipogenesis.<<<

5. This next abstract adds more data to the idea that Berberine and Metformin may work well together.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30428337/

6. This is an older study (2008), but it goes into significant detail of many of the ways in which Berberine may be beneficial for patients in the fight against T2DM. It also discusses the lipid and triglyceride-lowering effects of Berberine and discusses the dosing used in the study as 1,500 mg total Berberine per day in 3 divided doses of 500 mg each dose spread throughout the day.

Here is a quote from the study :

>>> In conclusion, this pilot study indicates that Berberine is a potent oral hypoglycemic agent with beneficial effects on lipid metabolism.<<<

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2410097/

7. The following Meta-Analysis determines that Berberine is able to lower hyperglycemia, lipids, hypertension and raise HDL cholesterol while exhibiting a good safety profile.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25498346/

Berberine Dosage for Type II Diabetes

In this article, dosing of Berberine at 1,500 mg per day divided into three equal doses of 500 mg each during the day is mentioned as a possible dosing schedule, along with an explanation of why.

There are many more studies discussing the use of Berberine as an adjunctive treatment for T2DM, but the above should give you a good idea of how helpful Berberine can be.

Conclusion

The above studies and information illustrate that Berberine has hypoglycemic effects, lipid-lowering effects, and synergy with the front-line T2DM pharmacological treatment, Metformin, in T2DM patients worth discussing with your doctor for pre-diabetes and T2DM.

If you search the internet, you will also find plenty of anecdotal evidence suggesting that Berberine is useful in T2DM.

As always, I am not a doctor and, as such, cannot recommend Berberine as a treatment for T2DM, nor can I offer dosing advice, but fortunately, dosing advice is given in one study and one article above! In any case, given the serious nature of T2DM, consulting your doctor or healthcare professional before starting Berberine is needed.

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Where to Buy

Berberine can be found in most health food stores and online. The product you choose should offer capsules that are pure Berberine with no additional active products in it and each capsule should contain 500 mg each of Berberine in order to try and replicate dosing used in studies.

Here are 2 good companies on Amazon.



Thorne Research - Berberine-500 - Botanical Compound to Support Blood Sugar Metabolism - 60 Capsules

Integrative Therapeutics - Berberine 500mg - Metabolism of Blood Sugar Support Supplements - HCL - Vegan - 60 Capsules

Related Links:

Diabetes Type I
Diabetes Type II
Diabetic Neuropathy


Berberine

2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 
  100%


Posted by Nana Monster (Hannibal, New York) on 08/08/2016
5 out of 5 stars

I was using glyburide and my numbers were going up to around 300+ with a high of 429. The doc wanted me on Januvia which I refused so he kicked me out of his practice. THEN I found a new one and he switched me to Glimpiride...BAD stuff. After 3 weeks on it I was having headaches, severe muscle spasms, joint pain, chest pain (have heart issues), sugar numbers were going up and it kicked in the glucoama real bad to the point everything was fuzzy. He then wanted me on Farxiga which is super bad so I asked him about Berberine. He didn't know anything about so I went ahead and did more research and decided it was something I wanted to try.

I've been on it for 5 weeks now and my lowest starting number was 110 and the highest nite time was 189. I'm staying between 120-170 on an average low to high range. I can definitely live with this as it's well over half of what I was running with big pharma's stuff. I feel a lot better, more energy, skin is soooooo soft.

Still have some residual from the Glimpiride with the headaches and chest pain mainly but every now and then the muscles let go. I'm hoping that the numbers continue to improve. I go in 2 weeks for a blood draw for the A1C and then the following week for a checkup. I'll let you know how the doctor handles me not doing the drug and instead going for the plants. I use a brand which has Barberry and Oregon Grape Seed. Will post again in about a month and let you know how I'm doing. Dropped about 10 pounds so far too :)


Berberine
Posted by Adele (Portland, Or) on 04/28/2014
5 out of 5 stars

I have cured my Type 2 diabetes by taking Berberine. 500mg 3 times daily, before or with food. I take no medication.

Replied by Om
(Hope, Bc Canada)
04/29/2014

Adele from Portland, Or-- thank you very much for your post. I hope I can get Berberine from the health food store. Congratulations. Namaste Om

Replied by Adele
(Portland, OR)
08/19/2014

There is a selection of berberine on Amazon. I use Dr Whitaker's or Glyco, any one will do. Make sure it is pure and made in the US. One of them comes with Banaba too, I am using this now and have gone to 400 mg from 500.


Berberine, ALA

2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 
  100%


Posted by Rc Hoppy (Winamac, Indiana Usa) on 03/26/2021
5 out of 5 stars

Berberine works well by itself at lowering blood sugar.

My wife has DM2 and along with it, all the other problems. The doctors had her taking several hypertension meds, as well as Metformin and a water pill. I had heard of Berberine in the past, and really wanted to try it with her, but was a little hesitant. On a recent trip to the doctor's office, her bloodwork showed that her kidney function was dropping and the doctor told us to drop the Metformin and water pill because they were too hard on her kidneys. I had tried a combination of Metformin and Berberine before, without good results, so I still had the Berberine on the shelf and ready for action.

I started giving her Berberine twice a day with breakfast and dinner, and also added 300 mg of alpha-lipoic acid at breakfast and bedtime for water retention. Within a very short period of time, we saw such a difference.

Her fasting sugar dropped to 100 + or - 10 and we had to reduce her nightly insulin injection by 10 units to keep it from going too low. (One morning her sugar was down to 60 and very scary.) The ALA also reduced the swelling in her legs and feet. Now her shoes don't look like they are two sizes too small and her ankles no longer have marks from the elastic in her socks.

The combination of the two ( both available on Amazon) has made a real difference in her blood sugar as well as the edema that goes along with hypertension.

Replied by Becca
(Sacramento)
03/28/2021

Hi, what dose and brand do you recommend for the Berberine? Thanks.

Replied by Rc Hoppy
(Winamac, Indiana Usa)
03/29/2021

The bottle says the dose is two capsules, for a total of 1 Gr., or 500 mg. each.

I give my wife 1 capsule with breakfast and 1 with dinner, and the results are better than Metformin, without any of the harmful side effects, such as destroying her kidney function.

Carri
(WA)
03/29/2021

I thought berberine was supposed to be taken on an empty tummy? Perhaps I was mistaken.

Andri
(Florida)
03/31/2021

Can you please tell me the brand name? Thanks.

Paula
(FL)
04/01/2021
5 out of 5 stars

My husband and I are successfully using "Amazing Formulas" Berberine and it was touted as one of the best by Consumer Lab. We take it with food two times per day. It is 1,000 mg.