Banaba is a flowering plant that grows in warm climate like the Philippines, India and others. Banaba is widely used in the Philippines and as herbal medicine for diabetes. While in India, Banaba is also used in Ayurvedic medicine for the treatment of diabetes. The Banaba leaves and flowers contain corrosolic acid, a substance being studied for its insulin like effect of lowering the glucose in the body. Banaba is also being studied as a weight-loss supplement for its ability to delay or reduce the absorption of carbohydraes. Banaba is also rich in vitamins and minerals including zinc and magnesium. Banaba is also rich in dietary fibers.
Folkloric uses of Banaba herbal medicine include the treatment for diarrhea, constipation, inflammation of kidneys, dysuria and other urinary dysfunctions
Banaba is a tropical flowering tree that grow up to 10 meters high. Banaba has large green oblong leaves that is about 3 inches in width and 7 inches in length. The flowers or Banaba are racemes and colored pink to lavender. Banaba bears nut-like fruits that are arranged in large clumps.
Banaba, Herbal Medicine For Diabetes
Banaba is used as herbal medicine for the treatment of diabetes not only in India but also in the Philippines.
Studies have shown that Banaba contains corosolic acid that acts like insulin by lowering the blood sugar in the body. Corosolic acid is a triterpenoid glycoside that improves the cellular uptake of glucose (Murakami C, et al 1993, Chemical and Pharmaceutical Bulletin).
Banaba Herbal Tea For Weight Loss Management
Banaba herbal tea is also used for sustained weight-loss management. The corosolic acid in Banaba leaves and flowers acts by delaying and reducing the absorption of carbohydrates by the body. Continued drinking of banaba tea causes weight loss without any side effects.
In a group study that has been conducted for Glucosol™-a US patent drug containing corosolic acid. There was a reduction of weight for diabetic subjects. Similar study was done for non-diabetics and it was found that corosolic acid does not alter either the absorption or clearance of blood sugar in non-diabetic subjects, while retaining its weight-loss effect (Corosolic acid formulation and its application for weight-loss management and blood sugar balance. US Patent Issued on August 31, 2004 ).