1. #1

    Blood Sugar: Metformin and Berberine

    Quote Originally Posted by CoastWatcher View Post
    In regard to the A1c value - has Metformin been discussed?
    We have discussed it. The first and only endo I went to see said that was what I needed to fix me up and my testosterone was nothing to worry about. :/

    I have dragged my feet because I really don't want to take any more medication than absolutely needed. I wanted to give the T a chance to lower my blood sugar if it can before I added metformin (or an alternative) to the mix.

    According to a few articles I have read, it seems that increasing T can reduce the FBG by as much as 20 points over the course of 2 or more years. That would get me back into normal range.

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  3. #2
    CSI007 there are some herbs that can help keep your sugar (glucose) under control. Here are 4 herbs but there are more, just do a google. Cinnamon, Turmeric, Gymnema and Ginger. My wife was diabetic for 6 or 8 years and by making big changes in our diet by cutting out white flour and sugar (much lower carbs) she was able to get off all medicines. Any herbs that you buy should be organic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by baughts View Post
    CSI007 there are some herbs that can help keep your sugar (glucose) under control. Here are 4 herbs but there are more, just do a google. Cinnamon, Turmeric, Gymnema and Ginger. My wife was diabetic for 6 or 8 years and by making big changes in our diet by cutting out white flour and sugar (much lower carbs) she was able to get off all medicines. Any herbs that you buy should be organic.
    Another one is Berberine. It has been compared to metformin as to effectiveness. I take 1000 mg per day. It helps to lower my glucose levels and HbA1c.

    https://examine.com/supplements/berberine/

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0083V8UB4...parklbeyourbes

  5. #4
    Thanks guys.
    If you read my other thread you know that I generally eat less then 30 carbs per day. Most coming from veggies, berries and cheese. This has had some impact on my FBG and A1C but not much over the past 3 1/2 years. I did manage to lose 40lbs though before I hit a brick wall and since starting TRT have gained about 15 of it back.

    My typical days are 75% fat/15% protein and 10% carbs.

    I tried an entire bottle of cinsulin (sp?) which is safe cinnamon. Had no impact on BG at all. The funny thing is,

    I can eat a large meal with high carbs or sugar and my blood sugar will spike some and come back down quickly. Only once have I had a BG over 200 after a meal and I think I didn't wash my hands off well enough after eating a couple of sugar cookies.

    With my current diet I should have been thrown back into the 80s an 90s of FBG. Something is screwed up in my body and it's thrown everything out of whack.

  6. #5
    Leesto,

    I may give the Berberine a try. That looks really interesting and I had not heard about it before.

  7. #6
    Moderator Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CSI007 View Post
    Leesto,

    I may give the Berberine a try. That looks really interesting and I had not heard about it before.
    The people I know, were disappointed with Berberine. Metformin I believe is a very benign drug, really worth taking, so may good qualities.
    https://www.excelmale.com/tags.php?tag=metformin
    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

  8. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post
    The people I know, were disappointed with Berberine. Metformin I believe is a very benign drug, really worth taking, so may good qualities.
    https://www.excelmale.com/tags.php?tag=metformin

    Reading about both last night. To be honest neither sounds particularly safe for long term use. Metformin seems to also cause down regulation over time in some people and becomes less an less effective.

    Some studies on Berberine seem to indicate that it might cause DNA destruction and have mutational properties thus cancer possibilities particularly with regards to the liver.


    <confused>

  9. #8
    Moderator Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CSI007 View Post
    Reading about both last night. To be honest neither sounds particularly safe for long term use. Metformin seems to also cause down regulation over time in some people and becomes less an less effective.

    Some studies on Berberine seem to indicate that it might cause DNA destruction and have mutational properties thus cancer possibilities particularly with regards to the liver.


    <confused>
    I started using Metformin-ER October 2013, 750mg twice a day since October 2013. I have only found it beneficial and for me no bad side effects.
    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

  10. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by CSI007 View Post
    Reading about both last night. To be honest neither sounds particularly safe for long term use. Metformin seems to also cause down regulation over time in some people and becomes less an less effective.

    Some studies on Berberine seem to indicate that it might cause DNA destruction and have mutational properties thus cancer possibilities particularly with regards to the liver.


    <confused>
    You should never take a drug, a supplement, anything, that you aren't comfortable with. However, there is a significant long-term risk in not controlling blood sugar levels. I don't use Meformin, but did use Berberine for a time - was pleased, but decided to set it aside and increase my activity levels to see if (one last try) would bring things into line. They did respond. I would have turned to Metformin had those efforts failed as I strongly feel the benefits it can achieve outweigh potential risks.
    I am not a physician. Comments offered here are for discussion purposes only. Please consult your doctor before initiating, changing, or stopping any therapy.

  11. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by CoastWatcher View Post
    You should never take a drug, a supplement, anything, that you aren't comfortable with. However, there is a significant long-term risk in not controlling blood sugar levels. I don't use Meformin, but did use Berberine for a time - was pleased, but decided to set it aside and increase my activity levels to see if (one last try) would bring things into line. They did respond. I would have turned to Metformin had those efforts failed as I strongly feel the benefits it can achieve outweigh potential risks.
    If I could actually get exercise going that would help me immensely. I had a BG of 124 right after dinner one night. Went for a walk and checked it after the 45 minute walk and it was down to upper 70s. So I know my body responds to exercise in a positive way where BG is concerned.

    I agree though on the threat that is there with continue elevated BG. I certainly do not want to become diabetic that is why I change my eating lifestyle so drastically. Just not enough I guess. I used to consume at least 250 to 350 carbs per day (mostly fruit juices).

  12. #11
    Moderator Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CoastWatcher View Post
    You should never take a drug, a supplement, anything, that you aren't comfortable with. However, there is a significant long-term risk in not controlling blood sugar levels. I don't use Meformin, but did use Berberine for a time - was pleased, but decided to set it aside and increase my activity levels to see if (one last try) would bring things into line. They did respond. I would have turned to Metformin had those efforts failed as I strongly feel the benefits it can achieve outweigh potential risks.
    What affect did Berberine have on your A1c and when you stop using Berberine how high did it rise?
    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

  13. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post
    What affect did Berberine have on your A1c and when you stop using Berberine how high did it rise?
    I had climbed from 5.3 to 5.6 and Berberine dropped it to 5.4. It now rides at 5.3/5.4 w/out intervention.
    I am not a physician. Comments offered here are for discussion purposes only. Please consult your doctor before initiating, changing, or stopping any therapy.

  14. #13
    It really looks like you have to find the right manufacturer of Berberine. Also appears that Milk Thistle is a synergist and helps the body absorb it better.

  15. #14
    Moderator Vince's Avatar
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    Ask The Herbalist: Berberine Herbs Warnings https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WO5c2L8CsDQ
    Of course I don't know if this is true?
    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

  16. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post
    Ask The Herbalist: Berberine Herbs Warnings https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WO5c2L8CsDQ
    Of course I don't know if this is true?
    There was some studies done in vitro with doses approaching normal human dosages on cells. I think this is where many of the warnings have come from. Of course, you can make anything toxic to cells in a test tube including water!

  17. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post
    Ask The Herbalist: Berberine Herbs Warnings https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WO5c2L8CsDQ
    Of course I don't know if this is true?
    Interesting thoughts on that video. I had heard there is a possibility of that occurring with regards to intestinal flora but he seems sure about it.

  18. #17
    Here is some more good info on it.

    http://journals.plos.org/plosone/art...l.pone.0042529



    Due to the evident clinical therapeutic effects of berberine for diabetes and dyslipidemia [15], [18], the mechanisms involved in its beneficial effects against metabolic disorders have attracted much attention in recent years. In this study, we demonstrated that berberine co-administration at a dose of 100 mg/kg body weight effectively prevented the weight gain and development of insulin resistance induced by long-term HFD feeding. No obvious side effects were observed in the present study. As extrapolated using the body surface area normalization method [37], such dose is equivalent to about 1.0 g/day/person in humans. In a previous human trial, we also confirmed that oral administration of berberine at such a dose of 1.0 g/day/person for 3 months is effective and safe in the treatment of type 2 diabetes and dyslipidemia [15].
    They go into detail on the gut flora issue with the herb. Seems like it has significant impact but only on certain species of bacteria most notably some Lactobacillus.

    Reading further, some therorize that maybe that is the primary reason it works. It is affecting the gut microbes in a positive way. Clear out the bad and keep the good?
    Last edited by CSI007; 01-29-2017 at 09:36 AM.

  19. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Leesto View Post
    Another one is Berberine. It has been compared to metformin as to effectiveness. I take 1000 mg per day. It helps to lower my glucose levels and HbA1c.

    https://examine.com/supplements/berberine/

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0083V8UB4...parklbeyourbes
    Leesto,
    How long have you been taking the herb? How significant was your FBG drop? Any side effects?

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    Quote Originally Posted by CSI007 View Post

    Reading further, some therorize that maybe that is the primary reason it works. It is affecting the gut microbes in a positive way. Clear out the bad and keep the good?
    Interesting discussion.

    I take 1000 mg per day and have been doing so for quite some time. It has helped my blood glucose level and lowered my HbA1C. I have not noticed any side effects at all. That doesn't mean there aren't any, just none that I can notice or identify. I do keep careful notes when changing meds or supplements or protocol.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CSI007 View Post
    Leesto,
    How long have you been taking the herb? How significant was your FBG drop? Any side effects?
    I've been taking it for about a year. 1000 mg per day. No side effects that I have been able to notice. FBG drop was around 50. I had already been on Metformin and the keto diet which lowered my FBG to about 190. Adding berberine lowered it to about 140. Further dietary restrictions and some weight training have brought it to about 110 - 120. That's still higher than normal but much better than where I was at a year ago. At one point my FBG was over 500 and HbA1C was 13.5. The most recent HbA1C was 5.9.

  22. #21
    Moderator Vince's Avatar
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    Berberine alleviates ox-LDL induced inflammatory factors by up-regulation of autophagy via AMPK/mTOR signaling pathway. http://translational-medicine.biomed...967-015-0450-z
    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

  23. #22
    Moderator Vince's Avatar
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    I'm having difficulty with the peculiar fact that virtually all studies with berberine are from China.Recent news on that:
    ScienceAlert: 80% of data in Chinese clinical trials have been fabricated
    referencing this regional news article:
    RFA: Chinese Clinical Trials Data 80 Percent Fabricated: Government
    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

  24. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Leesto View Post
    I've been taking it for about a year. 1000 mg per day. No side effects that I have been able to notice. FBG drop was around 50. I had already been on Metformin and the keto diet which lowered my FBG to about 190. Adding berberine lowered it to about 140. Further dietary restrictions and some weight training have brought it to about 110 - 120. That's still higher than normal but much better than where I was at a year ago. At one point my FBG was over 500 and HbA1C was 13.5. The most recent HbA1C was 5.9.
    Wow,
    That is significantly higher than I am. When I was diagnose as pre-diabetes in 2013 my FBG was 124. But my labs have been all over the place since I went on a keto diet. My own testing reflects the same. Lowest last week was 102. Highest was 134! It's all over the place. :/ If I could get below 100 or 95 and keep it there I would be ecstatic.

  25. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post
    I'm having difficulty with the peculiar fact that virtually all studies with berberine are from China.Recent news on that:
    ScienceAlert: 80% of data in Chinese clinical trials have been fabricated
    referencing this regional news article:
    RFA: Chinese Clinical Trials Data 80 Percent Fabricated: Government


    Here is one from the U.S.

    EDIT: Looks like it might contain a lot of data from China?

    Looks like it actually worked slightly better then metformin.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2410097/

    If you check these two charts out you will see that it is indeed very effective.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/art...hms49995f1.gif

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2410097/table/T2/


    Last edited by CSI007; 01-29-2017 at 05:23 PM.

  26. #25
    So after some pretty exhaustive reading, I think I am going to give this a try and see where it goes. Hopefully it doesn't kill me!

    I am using a product that also has milk thistle extract in it to help with absorption. I will try to keep this thread updated with my progress.

    Product should arrive Tuesday and I will start taking it that day. I will begin with my FBG tomorrow and keep records daily to see if there is progress an if so when it begins.

  27. #26
    Moderator Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CSI007 View Post
    So after some pretty exhaustive reading, I think I am going to give this a try and see where it goes. Hopefully it doesn't kill me!

    I am using a product that also has milk thistle extract in it to help with absorption. I will try to keep this thread updated with my progress.

    Product should arrive Tuesday and I will start taking it that day. I will begin with my FBG tomorrow and keep records daily to see if there is progress an if so when it begins.
    Sounds like a good plan.
    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

  28. #27
    I will try to update this daily for at least a week or two then update less frequently but with all my FBG numbers.

    Today at waking my FBG was 124 (Tested once)

    Incidentally, 30 minutes after a meal of filet minion (about 10 ozs), 1/2 cup of Brussel sprouts, 4 sauteed shrimp (butter and garlic) and a tablespoon of homemade applesauce (this alone had at least 5 carbs in it) my glucose was at 99.

    My wife took hers after eating pretty much what I did and hers was at 128. As far as we know she is not diabetic or pre-diabetic.

  29. #28
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    The Dawn Phenomenon – Why Are Blood Sugars High in the Morning? https://www.dietdoctor.com/the-dawn-phenomenon
    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

  30. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post
    The Dawn Phenomenon – Why Are Blood Sugars High in the Morning? https://www.dietdoctor.com/the-dawn-phenomenon
    I do know about that but the page has some interesting info I was not aware of. I should read before I post.

  31. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by CSI007 View Post
    I do know about that but the page has some interesting info I was not aware of. I should read before I post.
    So to summarize that page. Glucose dumped from liver because of sugar and fat stored in liver (way to much stored). Normal to have elevated amounts as you "cleanse" the liver of the sugar.

    Problem with that is I have been at LCHF diet for almost 4 years now. I would figure all that excess sugar stored would be outta there.

    I am certain that I do have fatty liver cause I had a sonogram done about 15 years ago shortly after chemo and it indicated fatty liver (chemo a possible cause)

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