Gymnema Sylvestre

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New Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 2/22/2007 8:04 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone can help me - I heard reference once to a (by-the-book-scientific) study that was conducted in India, about Gymnema Sylvestre, being a key component of various supplements for aiding diabetic control. Anyway, I was told that the study found Gymnema to be effective at regrowing pancreatic b-cells. The implication was, of course, that Gymnema could stimulate you to re-grow a Type-1 Diabetic Non-Functioning Pancreas.

I have Type-1 Diabetes and have spent a lot of time looking into complimentary therapies, but this is the first time I've heard of a substance that is supposed to be able to help to actually heal a pancreas - other substances under the natural therapies umbrella usually claim to improve your insulin sensitivity, or something of the like, which is quite different to the notion of restoring your body's ability to produce insulin. Does anyone know anything about the study, or where to find more details?


Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 6056
   Posted 2/22/2007 1:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Welcome to HealingWell. I found some stuff from The National Institute of Health that indicates it is helpful but not entirely documented in what it can and can't do in humans. Gymnema sylvestre

The information about regenerating beta cells can be traced to a couple of studies by some doctors from India in 1981 and a follow-up study in 1990. (Shanmugasundaram ERB, Leela Gopinath K, Radha Shanmugasundaram K, Rajendran VM. Possible regeneration of the islets of Langerhans in streptozotocin diabetic rats given Gymnema sylvestre leaf extracts. J Ethnopharmacol 1990;30:265-79) All of the information I can find about it since then refers back to those two studies. There has been some in vitro work done on rat's pancreatic cells but the results were only applicable to non-insulin dependent type 2's. Anything else that you find online about this study is posted, sometimes very craftily, by herbal supplement companies, often in the guise of a scientific website.

I firmly believe that if there were a way that Sylvestre was able to regenerate beta cells in humans it would have been followed up by the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation who are very dedicated to finding a cure for this disease. I don't know who told you about this study but I would go back and ask them for their source so you can do the research yourself. I would be willing to bet that their source is someone selling herbals. (Just my opinion!)
~ Jeannie
Forum Moderator/Diabetes & Fibromyalgia
~Please remember that 50% of all doctors graduated in the bottom half of their class!
Yours may be one of them...

"People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun's out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light within."
- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 534
   Posted 2/22/2007 2:05 PM (GMT -7)   

Jeannie is so right on the money!  If it were promising or effective, the whole scientific community would have jumped all over this.  A "cure" for diabetes (which is effectively what you've described) is something lottsa groups have an interest in; and its how unscrupulous salesmen try to sell you stuff, alluding to its ability to "cure" or "dramatically" help your disease!

scool Warren

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 234
   Posted 2/24/2007 8:50 AM (GMT -7)   
I completely agree with Jeannie and Warren. As a type 1 diabetic it sure would be nice if something could do that but I don't believe the legitimacy of those claims at all. With type 1 diabetes you really have to be careful with things like that. Since we produce no insulin we can go into a life threatening state very quickly. As it stands the only treatment for type 1 diabetes is insulin, of course used with diet and excercise. In my opinion, an insulin pump is the best way to do insulin. However, insulin pump therapy is expensive and not always covered by insurance. I have been on a pump for just over a month and have the best control I have ever experienced in my life. Just for the record I have been a type 1 diabetic for 27 years.
What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.  Shouldn't I be invincible by now?

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 9/30/2007 7:39 AM (GMT -7)   
Gymnema was and still is a traditional herbal therapy and it was used long before unscrupulous came along.

One has to take many grams of it for it to work and at dosage that is used and prescribed nowadays, it will have to take as long as six months before any appreciable results can be realised. The recommended course is 2 years !!

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 477
   Posted 9/30/2007 10:14 PM (GMT -7)   

It is my understanding that this herb has been used for over 3000 years in India for the treatment of diabetes.

This link is to the US dept. of Health and Human Resources. It's a summary paper on Ayurvedic Interventions for Diabetes Mellitus.<!-- InstanceEndEditable -->

One of the conclusions was:

  • There is evidence to suggest that the single herbs Coccinia indica, holy basil, fenugreek, and Gymnema sylvestre and the herbal formulas Ayush-82 and D-400 have a glucose-lowering effect and deserve further study. Evidence of effectiveness of several other herbs is less extensive (C. tamala, Eugenia jambolana, and Momordica charantia).
  • I did some reseach on this herb after I was first diagnosed- I never did find any conclusive research that used human subjects.



    I just want to live happily ever after-every now and then. Jimmy Buffett

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