Gymnema sylvestre also known as Meshashringi is a climbing plant native to tropical forests of southern and central India that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine since ancient times. The most dominant use of Gymnema sylvestre is for type 2 diabetes treatment. Research shows that it is an effective natural medicine for diabetes (Type 1 and 2) that works as well as conventional medicine.
Gymnemic acids present in the leaves of Gymnema sylvestre aids diabetes management by slowing down the absorption of glucose from the intestines to the bloodstream which in turn lowers the level of blood sugar. In addition, gymnema sylvestre extract also helps in regenerating the damaged beta cells of the pancreas that produce insulin. Gymnemic acids function as sweetness inhibitors that reduce the taste or sensitivity of sugar in the mouth, thus, managing sugar cravings and sugar addictions.
Gymnema sylvestre is not only an ayurvedic diabetes medicine; it has effective benefits for weight loss as well. Intake of gymnema sylvestre supplements in the form of capsules has been shown to promote weight loss in people who are overweight or obese. Gymnemic acid functions as an appetite suppressant that reduces mindless cravings and also corrects metabolic syndrome that disrupts the balance of energy utilization and storage, thus leading to obesity, presence of high serum triglycerides and hypertension.