Understanding Metabolic Syndrome or Syndrome X Part II
by Dr. Greg Fors, DC – Board Certified Neurologist DIBCN Posted On: 07/15/2007
To properly treat metabolic syndrome, it is vital that you improve your patients’ insulin sensitivity by having them eat foods with a low glycemic index. To begin, provide your patients with more information on low glycemic foods by having them utilize quality educational websites such as www.glycemicindex.com and www.whfoods.com. In addition, have your patients eat at least five servings of vegetables, and two to four servings of fresh fruits each day. They should eat only 100% whole grain cereals, pastas, noodles and breads, especially oats and barley that are high in soluble fibers. Also, have your patients add a supplemented soluble dietary fiber to their diet of at least 10 g per day. It is extremely helpful to supplement your patients with nutritional products containing high levels of quality-standardized extracts of specific botanicals shown to promote healthy blood sugar levels.
In review of the literature, and based on my own clinical experience, the following standardized extracts have been shown to be effective in overcoming insulin resistance. Standardized extracts containing 4% essential oils of cinnamon have been shown to be very beneficial in strengthening insulin activity. To be effective, quality extracts of cinnamon should be supplemented at levels of approximately 750 mg per day. Mulberry Leaf extract from the Morus Alba plant has also been shown to improve blood glucose and lipid levels in diabetics and those with insulin resistance. To be effective Mulberry Leaf must be a quality standardized extract and supplemented at levels of 250 mg 3 times daily for total of at least 750 mg. Another plant Gymnema Sylvestre Leaf extract has also shown great benefit in promoting healthy insulin levels and glucose balance. Supplementation should be with a high quality Gymnema Sylvestre extract standardized to 25% and dosage should reach approximately 600 mg per day.
Mulberry Leaf and Gymnema Leaf extracts taken with meals have been shown to lower glucose uptake and support good glycemic control in human studies. These two botanicals have been shown to provide excellent antioxidant protection while promoting healthy insulin action. It is also helpful to add Green Tea extract standardized to 95% because of its ability to protect insulin secreting pancreatic cells; supplemented levels should reach around 300 mg per day. These botanicals can be extremely powerful adjunct to a regime of a low glycemic diet in normalizing insulin levels and promoting healthy blood sugar levels. Therefore, always warn your patients that this program may lower their need for insulin.
Other supplemented nutrients that should be utilized in this program are chromium polynicotinate, biotin, and alpha lipoic acid. Chromium in human trials has been shown to prevent type-2 diabetes and improve glycemic control, usually showing improvement after two weeks. The average supplemented dose of chromium in these studies was 500 mcg twice a day. Biotin in human studies has been shown to greatly improve glucose metabolism and improve insulin sensitivity. The average dose of biotin is 10 to 20 mg per day. Alpha lipoic acid is a very unique antioxidant that greatly improves insulin sensitivity; doses in diabetic studies have averaged 600 to 800 mg per day. In addition, alpha lipoic acid is one of the few agents that have been shown to improve neuropathic pain and renal dysfunction in diabetes. In these studies dosages were well over 600 mg per day of alpha lipoic acid. Therefore, chromium, biotin and alpha lipoic acid are three nutrients that should be the cornerstone of any program to combat metabolic syndrome and assist individuals with type 2 diabetes.
Based on the above research I have created a nutraceutical formula for Biospec Nutritionals called Glucose-IR. This formula was specifically designed to provide your patients with the highest quality concentrated herbal extracts, minerals and nutrients to help improve insulin sensitivity.