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Gymnema

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What other names is Gymnema known by?

Gemnema Melicida, Gimnema, Gur-Mar, Gurmar, Gurmarbooti, Gymnema montanum, Gymnema sylvestre, Gymnéma, Gymnéma Sylvestre, Madhunashini, Merasingi, Meshashringi, Miracle Plant, Periploca sylvestris, Shardunika, Vishani.

What is Gymnema?

Gymnema is a woody climbing shrub native to India and Africa. The leaves are used to make medicine. Gymnema has a long history of use in India's Ayurvedic medicine. The Hindi name, gurmar, means "destroyer of sugar."

Today, gymnema is used for diabetes, metabolic syndrome, weight loss, and cough. It is also used for malaria and as a snake bite antidote, digestive stimulant, laxative, appetite suppressant, and diuretic.

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Diabetes. Early research suggests that taking a specific gymnema extract (GS4) by mouth, in combination with insulin or diabetes medications, can enhance blood sugar reduction in people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
  • Weight loss. Early research suggests that taking a specific combination of gymnema extract, hydroxycitric acid, and niacin-bound chromium by mouth for 8 weeks might reduce body weight in people who are overweight or obese.
  • Metabolic syndrome.
  • Stimulating digestion.
  • Malaria.
  • Cough.
  • Snake bites.
  • Softening the stool (laxative).
  • Increasing urine excretion (diuretic).
More evidence is needed to rate gymnema for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).

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