Traditional Chinese Medicine pill halts progression of diabetes in new study

Friday, January 31, 2014 by: PF Louis
Tags: Traditional Chinese Medicine, diabetes, medical research

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(NaturalNews) Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has treated maladies and health issues for thousands of years with herbs and acupuncture. Yet, to appease the western world's view of "evidence-based medicine," various trials and studies are performed, often comparing TCM to modern pharmaceuticals, in order to prove efficacy and safety.

There have been some recent studies comparing pharmaceuticals to TCM herbal remedies for prediabetes and diabetes type 2. It's well known that all pharmaceuticals have side effects and most herbal remedies do not. But instead of accepting 2,000-plus years of experience with TCM herbs, randomized, double-blind tests must be done to convince modern medical institutions.

According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA): "Before people develop type 2 diabetes, they almost always have 'prediabetes' - blood glucose levels that are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes." The ADA also goes on to say that prediabetes doesn't necessarily need to lead to diabetes type 2.

The CDC says that 79 million Americans over the age of 20 may be prediabetic. There are various ways of avoiding diabetes type 2 even if one is prediabetic. Altering one's diet from processed foods to mostly whole plant foods (non-GMO) and exercise are two approaches. Minimizing sugar without using artificial sweeteners and reducing stress are two other helpful changes.

Western medicine offers pharmaceuticals to be taken with or before meals. Three that are most commonly prescribed are glibenclamide, acarbose and metformin. Those are the drug names which appear under a few different brand names.

Side effects include severe gastrointestinal irritation, inhibited vitamin B12 absorption leading to anemia, low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), liver damage and increased homocysteine levels that can lead to cardiovascular disease, among others. Not to worry. There are pharmaceuticals for all those side effects too.

TCM pills that passed the randomized, double-blind modern medicine standard

A 2013 study was coordinated among 11 different research groups in China in 2013. Each research center performed the same tasks with 389 participants who were prediabetic. Half were given placebos. Not too nice for those enlisting in the study and hoping for a cure.

For one year, participants took either one Tianqi capsule, a combination of 10 TCM herbs used for treating out-of-balance glucose levels and insulin resistance, or one placebo pill before each meal.

After results were compensated statistically for age and gender, it was determined that the Tianqi pills reduced the risk of prediabetes becoming diabetes by 32.1 percent. In other words, the Tianqi herbal pills stalled the progress of diabetes.

That may not mean seem sufficiently significant, but this reduced risk statistic corresponds to pharmaceutical study results of major diabetes drugs mentioned earlier for prediabetes and/or diabetes type 2, but without side effects.

An earlier study conducted in Peking used 800 patients having glycemic control issues related to prediabetic and diabetic issues. They used a Xiaoke Pill, which contains several herbs for glycemic issues that TCM has used for 2,000 years, but added the pharmaceutical glibenclamide.

The herbs and glibenclamide were standardized to have the same mixtures in all the pills. Some of the study participants had been using metformin, and others had no prior pharmaceutical experience. The researchers also had some participants use glibenclamide alone. These different groups were differentiated for test purposes.

Overall, the herbal combination with glibenclamide, Xiaoke, provided better results than glibenclamide alone. And Xiaoke also greatly reduced glibenclamide's major side effect, hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar.

Concluding Opinion: Treating glycemic issues up to and including diabetes with good diet, exercise and TCM is more efficacious and safer than popping pills pushed by Big Pharma. Yes, Obamacare and other insurance plans won't cover TCM costs. But TCM costs much less than modern mainstream medicine.

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