Endocrine

, Volume 36, Issue 2, pp 268–274

Improving insulin resistance with traditional Chinese medicine in type 2 diabetic patients

  • Menglei Chao
  • Dajin Zou
  • Yifei Zhang
  • Yuhong Chen
  • Miao Wang
  • Hong Wu
  • Guang Ning
  • Weiqing Wang
Original Paper

Abstract

Some clinical studies and animal researches have evaluated the efficacy of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and compared its effects with placebo or other antidiabetic drugs. TCM involves three particular plants, as an antidiabetic drug. Our present research planned to evaluate the efficacy of TCM on insulin sensitivity and other related metabolic factors in type 2 diabetic patients. There were 43 newly diagnosed type 2 diabetic patients enrolled in this study, who did not use any antidiabetic drugs before. They were randomly assigned into TCM and placebo groups, administrated with TCM and placebo, respectively. Glucose disposal rate, fasting plasma glucose, postprandial plasma glucose, glycated hemoglobin, and other metabolic components were assessed at baseline and end point. Glucose disposal rate increased from 5.12 ± 2.20 to 6.37 ± 3.51 mg kg−1 min−1 in the TCM group, ANCOVA analysis showed that glucose disposal rate in the TCM group was significantly improved as compared to that in the placebo group (P < 0.05). Other metabolic related components such as fasting plasma glucose, postprandial plasma glucose, glycated hemoglobin, systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, body mass index, retinol binding protein 4 were improved in TCM group, but no statistical differences was detected between the two groups. No severe side effect was found in TCM group. TCM can ameliorate insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes and it is safe and effective in newly diagnosed diabetic patients.

Keywords

Traditional Chinese medicine Type 2 diabetes Insulin resistance Glucose disposal rate 

Abbreviations

T2D

Type 2 diabetes

TCM

Traditional Chinese medicine

FPG

Fasting plasma glucose

PPG

Postprandial plasma glucose

HbA1c

Glycated hemoglobin

INS0’

Fasting plasma insulin

INS120’

Postprandial plasma insulin

TG

Triglyceride

TC

Total cholesterol

HDL-c

High-density lipoprotein-cholesterol

LDL-c

Low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol

HPLC

High performance liquid chromatography

RBP4

Retinol binding protein 4

HsCRP

C-reactive protein

IL-6

Interleukin-6

GDR

Glucose disposal rate

BMI

Body mass index

SBP

Systolic blood pressure

DBP

Diastolic blood pressure

AMPK

AMP-activated protein kinase

References

  1. 1.
    International Diabetes Federation, Diabetes Atlas, 3rd edn. (International Diabetes Federation, Brussels, 2006)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    E.S. Ford, Risks for all-cause mortality, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes associated with the metabolic syndrome. Diabetes Care 28, 1769–1778 (2005)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    G. Ravaglia, P. Forti, F. Maioli, Metabolic syndrome: prevalence and prediction of mortality in elderly individuals. Diabetes Care 9, 2471–2476 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    N. Qing, C. Shi-bo, Z. Xue-zhong, Analysis on characteristics of the complication of metabolic syndrome in type 2 diabetes patients. J. Tradit. Chin. Med. 9, 809–811 (2007). [article in Chinese]Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    L. Ji-lin, The herbalism analysis of berberine on diabetes. J. Sichuan Tradit. Med. 11, 17–19 (1999). [article in Chinese]Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    S. Zhu-fang, X. Ming-zhi, L. Hai-fan, The effect of Jinqi tablet on glucose metabolism in experimental animals. Tradit. Chin. Drug Res. Clin. Pharmacol. 7, 24–26 (1996). [article in Chinese]Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    S. Zhu-fang, X. Ming-zhi, L. Hai-fan, The effects of Jinqi tablets on lipid, insulin resistance and immunologic function in experimental animals. Tradit. Chin. Drug Res. Clin. Pharmacol. 8, 23–25 (1997). [article in Chinese]Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    M. Vray, J.R. Attali, Randomized study of glibenclamide versus traditional Chinese treatment in type 2 diabetic patients. Diabete Metab. 21, 433–439 (1995). http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    K.G. Alberti, P.Z. Zimmet, Definition, diagnosis and classification of diabetes mellitus and its complications. Part 1: diagnosis and classification of diabetes mellitus provisional report of a WHO consultation. Diabet. Med. 15(53), 9–553 (1998)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Y.F. Zhang, J. Hong, W.W. Zhan, Elevated serum level of interleukin-18 is associated with insulin resistance in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Endocrine 29, 419–423 (2006)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    R.A. Defronzo, J.D. Tobin, R. Andres, Glucose clamp technique: a method for quantifying insulin secretion and resistance. Am J Physiol 237, E214–E223 (1979)PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    S. Soonthornpun, W. Setasuban, A. Thamprasit, Novel insulin sensitivity index derived from oral glucose tolerance test. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 88, 1019–1023 (2003)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Y. Zhang, X. Li, D. Zou, Treatment of type 2 diabetes and dyslipidemia with the natural plant alkaloid berberine. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 93, 2559–2565 (2008)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    W. Kong, J. Wei, P. Abidi, Berberine is a novel cholesterol-lowering drug working through a unique mechanism distinct from statins. Nat. Med. 10, 1344–1351 (2004)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Y.S. Lee, W.S. Kim, K.H. Kim, Berberine, a natural plant product, activates AMP-activated protein kinase with beneficial metabolic effects in diabetic and insulin-resistance states. Diabetes 55, 2256–2264 (2006)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    N. Turner, J.Y. Li, A. Gosby, Berberine and its more biologically available derivative, dihydroberberine, inhibit mitochondrial respiratory complex I: a mechanism for the action of berberine to activate AMP-activated protein kinase and improve insulin action. Diabetes 57, 1414–1418 (2008)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    J. Yin, R. Hu, M. Chen, Effects of berberine on glucose metabolism in vitro. Metabolism 51, 1439–1443 (2002)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    L. Zhou, Y. Yang, X. Wang, Berberine stimulates glucose transport through a mechanism distinct from insulin. Metabolism 56, 405–412 (2007)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    G.Y. Pan, Z.J. Huang, G.J. Wang, The antihyperglycaemic activity of berberine arises from a decrease of glucose absorption. Planta Med. 69, 632–636 (2003)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    T.E. Graham, Q. Yang, M. Bluher, Retimol-binding protein 4 and insulin resistance in lean, obese and diabetic subjects. N. Engl. J. Med. 354, 2552–2563 (2006)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Menglei Chao
    • 1
  • Dajin Zou
    • 2
  • Yifei Zhang
    • 1
  • Yuhong Chen
    • 1
  • Miao Wang
    • 2
  • Hong Wu
    • 2
  • Guang Ning
    • 1
  • Weiqing Wang
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Shanghai Clinical Center for Endocrine and Metabolic Diseases and Division of Endocrine and Metabolic Diseases of E-Institutes of Shanghai UniversitiesRui-Jin Hospital affiliated to Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of MedicineShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Department of EndocrinologyChang-Hai Hospital affiliated to the Second Military Medical UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Shanghai Clinical Center for Endocrine and Metabolic Diseases, Shanghai Institute of Endocrinology and MetabolismRuijin Hospital affiliated to Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of MedicineShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China

Personalised recommendations