Can Goji berries help manage diabetes?

Early research is showing promising results

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Can Goji berries help manage diabetes?


Type 2 diabetes is a condition where your body struggles to regulate blood sugar levels. While medication is a mainstay of treatment, researchers are exploring natural solutions too. This study investigated whether the most abundant component of Goji berries, called Lycium barbarum polysaccharide (LBP), could be helpful.

Link to the study:

Practical Application of Antidiabetic Efficacy of Lycium barbarum Polysaccharide in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes - PMC (nih.gov) 

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The Study:

Researchers recruited 67 people with type 2 diabetes.
Half (37 people) received a daily dose of LBP for 3 months.
The other half (30 people) received a placebo (inactive substance) for 3 months (control group).

What They Looked At:

Blood sugar levels: How much sugar was in the participants' blood after meals.
Insulin response: How well the body produced insulin, a hormone regulating blood sugar.
"Good" cholesterol (HDL) levels: Higher HDL helps remove bad cholesterol from the blood.

The Results:

People who took LBP showed a significant decrease in blood sugar levels after meals compared to the control group.
LBP also improved insulin response in these participants.
Additionally, LBP intake increased good cholesterol levels. 

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However, there are some important points to consider:

The study was relatively small, and a larger study is needed to confirm the findings.

The beneficial effects seemed to be more pronounced in people not taking diabetes medications already.

The follow-up period was only 3 months, so long-term effects are unknown.


What This Means:

Early research suggests LBP from Goji berries may offer some benefits for managing type 2 diabetes, particularly for those not yet on medication.

It seems to help with blood sugar control and insulin function, potentially contributing to better overall diabetes management.
However, more research is needed before recommending Goji berries or LBP supplements as a standard treatment.

Speak to your doctor before trying any supplements for diabetes management. They can advise you on the best course of action based on your individual needs. 

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