Researchers in the Univeristy of Chicago, studied the use of a ginseng extract for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Ginseng tea has been shown to have many beneficial effects on health. Diabetes is a major health problem worldwide. The condition affects about 8% of the U.S. population and 5% of the population in other nations. The vast majority of people with diabetes more than 70 percent -- have type 2 diabetes, which is often accompanied by obesity. Diabetics are at high risk for complications caused primarily by high blood sugar levels, and effective blood sugar control is essential to reducing the risk of these complications. Throughout history, many cultures have used the root of Asian ginseng to treat type 2 diabetes because of its anti-diabetic properties.
Investigators from the University of Chicago extracted the key component in ginseng from the berry of the plant to determine if mice had a positive effect on diabetic symptoms. Mice that were genetically engineered to have type 2 diabetes received injections of the substance daily for 10 days. They were then compared to mice that didn't receive the injections.
Researchers found the mice that received the injections had significantly improved results on standard tests to measure diabetes severity. These mice also lost a significant amount of weight, mainly due to a reduction in food intake and increase in energy expenditure and body temperature. The extract also significantly lowered cholesterol levels. Investigators believe the anti-diabetic activity of the ginseng extract used in this study may one day have clinical implications for the treatment of humans with diabetes.