Effects of Ginseng on Blood Sugar

December 9, 2018 • By Sophia Smith
The estimated reading time is 3 minutes

Ginseng is an amazing herb that has great health benefits which include helping to prevent cancer and helping out with inflammation. Ginseng is rich in antioxidants which are great for helping any inflammation in the body. Ginseng benefits also extend to preventing the common diseases by building up your immunity.

With so many benefits from one single herb, Ginseng has a lot of value, and even in traditional Chinese culture, Ginseng was valued more than gold. The best kind of Ginseng available right now is the American ginseng and more info about its qualities are available all over the internet.

The red ginseng herb can even help you normalize your blood sugar levels, particularly in the population with diabetes, and it is concluded by two main research studies. However, if you are planning to head right to the health food market to get your stock of ginseng, you should know that the ginseng consumed by you may not be as effective because of the difference of preparation methods, researches have warned so.

A research study by the University of Toronto presented two studies in 2003 at the American Diabetes Association’s 63rd Scientific Session. Normalizing blood sugar is the primary goal of any diabetes treatment, and ginseng may help to be an important part of the strategy to manage the blood sugar levels, said Mr. Fran Kaufman, MD, president of American Diabetes Association. (1)

  1. Normal Blood Sugar levels

In a study which included the subjects from type 2, diabetes consumed ginseng along with a greatly viscous fiber same as pectin had a very obvious reduction in blood sugar levels, reported by Alexandra Jenkins, a PhD candidate at Surrey University, UK.

The same study then added 30 more subjects which were given contemporary medicine to help with sugar levels in the blood, the medication controlled the blood sugar levels but didn’t help to normalize them. These participants were given capsules filled with ground, North American grew ginseng and greatly viscous fiber, or dummy capsules, three times a day for 12 weeks.

Then there were a 4 weeks break, where participants were switched to the alternate regimen; the participants who took ginseng then switched to placebo and vice versa.

Blood samples from all patients taken before the program showed the hemoglobin A1C is a standard measure of blood sugar level, was dropped to normal range while the participants were taking the ginseng capsules but it didn’t get into normal range when patients were taking a placebo, the study concluded.

The herbal preparation of ginseng appeared to be safe with not much side effects. Also, ginseng has an effect which is beyond medication, said the American Diabetes Association’s president Kaufman.

The Chinese, who use ginseng root to treat a variety of ailments, have been in medicine for 5,000 years, she says. "Just as acupuncture has been proven to have a role in Western medicine, so, too, will ginseng. We need to think globally." (2)

  1. Improved Insulin Performance

The second study utilized Korean red ginseng which had the effects on improving insulin sensitivity when it was compared with placebo, said John L. Sievenpiper, who was then a PhD candidate at the Toronto University.

One of the key abnormalities behind type 2 diabetes is that the body's tissues are not responsive enough to insulin so they don't process it properly. Ginseng, he says, appears to help the patients process better the insulin they have.


Ginseng can definitely improve your blood sugar levels to a great extent, and as per the studies described above, it may even help to normalize the blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes.

Sophia Smith

She is a renowned nutritionist and freelance writer whose topics of interest include healthy living and healthy eating. She is passionate about introducing new and delicious healthy meals while balancing her time between cooking and going to the gym. Her mission is to change the life of as many people as she can and make them the best version of themselves.
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