The effect of ginger (Zingiber officinale) on glycemic markers in patients with type 2 diabetes

Farzad Shidfar 1 , Asadollah Rajab 2 , Tayebeh Rahideh 1 , Nafiseh Khandouzi 3 , Sharieh Hosseini 4  and Shahrzad Shidfar 5
  • 1 School of Health, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • 2 Iranian Diabetes Association, Tehran, Iran
  • 3 Department of Nutrition and Biochemistry, School of Nutritional Sciences and Dietetics, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • 4 Department of Chemistry, Robat Karim Branch, Islamic Azad University, Robat Karim, Iran
  • 5 Worcester Memorial Hospital, University of Massachusetts, Worcester, USA
Farzad Shidfar, Asadollah Rajab, Tayebeh Rahideh, Nafiseh Khandouzi, Sharieh Hosseini and Shahrzad Shidfar

Abstract

Background: Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is one of the functional foods which contains biological compounds including gingerol, shogaol, paradol and zingerone. Ginger has been proposed to have anti-cancer, anti-thrombotic, anti-inflammatory, anti-arthritic, hypolipidemic and analgesic properties. Here, we report the effect of ginger supplementation on glycemic indices in Iranian patients with type 2 diabetes.

Methods: A double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trial was conducted on 20–60 -year-old patients with type 2 diabetes who did not receive insulin. Participants in the intervention and control groups were received 3 g of powdered ginger or placebo (lactose) (in capsules) daily for 3 months. Glycemic indices, total antioxidant capacity (TAC), malondialdehyde (MDA), C-reactive protein (CRP), serum paraoxonase, dietary intake and physical activity were measured at the beginning and end of the study, and after 12 h fasting.

Results: Comparison of the indices after 3 months showed that the differences between the ginger and placebo groups were statistically significant as follows: serum glucose (–19.41±18.83 vs. 1.63±4.28 mg/dL, p<0.001), HbA1c percentage (–0.77±0.88 vs. 0.02±0.16 %, p<0.001), insulin (–1.46±1.7 vs. 0.09±0.34 μIU/mL, p<0.001), insulin resistance (–16.38±19.2 vs. 0.68±2.7, p<0.001), high-sensitive CRP (–2.78±4.07 vs. 0.2±0.77 mg/L, p<0.001), paraoxonase-1 (PON-1) (22.04±24.53 vs. 1.71±2.72 U/L, p<0.006), TAC (0.78±0.71 vs. –0.04±0.29 µIU/mL, p<0.01) and MDA (–0.85±1.08 vs. 0.06±0.08 µmol/L, p<0.001) were significantly different.

Conclusions: This report shows that the 3 months supplementation of ginger improved glycemic indices, TAC and PON-1 activity in patients with type 2 diabetes.

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The Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine focuses on evidence concerning the efficacy and safety of complementary and alternative medical (CAM) whole systems, practices, interventions and natural health products, including herbal medicines.

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