In the Orient ginseng has been used for centuries to treat diabetes. Animal and human studies have also shown Panax (Asian) ginseng lowers elevated blood sugar levels. A new study from researchers at St. MichaelÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Hospital in Toronto adds further evidence to the notion that ginseng might be useful in the management of type 2 diabetes. The researchers gave study participants two 3-gram doses of ginseng, once 40 minutes before consuming a 25-grams of sugar (glucose) and once during the 25-gram sugar challenge. After the sugar challenge, blood glucose levels were measured every 15 to 30 minutes for up to 2 hours. In diabetics, ginseng significantly lowered blood sugar, whether it was given before or during the 25-gram sugar challenge. In non-diabetics, ginseng had no effect of blood sugar when give during the challenge, but did significantly lower blood sugar levels 45 and 60 minutes after the challenge. The scientists said it is premature to make recommendations on the use of ginseng based in this single study. [LeslieÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Note: If you are taking medication for diabetes and you are also taking ginseng, be sure to let your physician and pharmacist know. Your blood glucose levels should be monitored in order to help prevent potential low blood sugar reactions (hypoglycemia).]
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