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Salacia oblongahas a long history of use in the traditional Ayurvedic medicine system of India. Its bark has been used for treating diabetes, diarrhea, fever, arthritis, gonorrhea and skin diseases.
Since the late 1990's, Salacia oblongahas undergone modern research that has, to a certain highly preliminary extent, substantiated its traditional reputation as a treatment for diabetes and obesity. 1
S. oblongamay work similarly to the standard diabetes drug Acarbose, used in type 2 diabetes. Acarbose inhibits the intestinal enzyme alpha-glucosidase, an enzyme responsible for helping to digest carbohydrates. When alpha-glucosidase is inhibited, carbohydrate absorption is slowed, thereby reducing the rise in blood sugar that follows a meal.
A double-blind, placebo controlled study published in 2005 evaluated the effects of S. oblongaextract taken at a dose of 1000 mg daily. 2 In this study, 43 healthy people were given a high carbohydrate beverage with or without...
Salacia oblongais believed to be relatively safe. Some evidence suggests that Salacia oblonga does not damage DNA. 3 Studies in rats have shown a good safety profile. 4 In human studies, the primary side effects seen are identical to the side effects of standard alpha-glucosidase inhibitors: gas and cramping.
Maximum safe dosages are not known for pregnant or nursing women, or people with severe liver or kidney disease.