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  Latin Name Gymnema sylvestre
English Name Ram's horn
Hindi Name Gurmar
Part Used Leaf 

Gurmar is native to the tropical forests of southern and central India. Ayurvedic texts, Gymnema is referred to as Gurmar, which means “sugar killer” in Sanskrit. This plant was also called Meshashringi or "ram's horn" in Sanskrit.

1Its leaf when chewed deadens the sense of taste of sweet. It is a plant used traditionally for treatment of “sweet urine” or diabetes or hyperglycemia. Its leaf extract suppress glucose absorption and reduce the sensation of sweetness in foods, reduce sugar cravings – effects which may deliver important health benefits for individuals who want to balance blood sugar levels or body weight. Its leaf contains Gymnemic acids, which are known to suppress transport of glucose from the intestine into the blood stream.

2Extracts of Gymnema sylvestre have been used for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes mellitus in India for centuries. The effects of a novel high molecular weight Gymnema sylvestre extract, Om Santal Adivasi, (OSA(R)) on plasma insulin, C-peptide and glucose in a small cohort of patients with T2DM are reported here. Oral administration of OSA(R) (1 g/day, 60 days) induced significant increases in circulating insulin and C-peptide, which were associated with significant reductions in fasting and post-prandial blood glucose. In vitro measurements using isolated human islets of Langerhans demonstrated direct stimulatory effects of OSA(R) on insulin secretion from human ß-cells, consistent with an in vivo mode of action through enhancing insulin secretion. These in vivo and in vitro observations suggest that OSA(R) may provide a potential alternative therapy for the hyperglycemia associated with Type 2 diabetes mellitus.



1. Database on medicinal plants, CCFRAS, Dept. of ISM & H, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Govt. of India, Vol-7, Page-265-268
2. PMID: 20812281, Phytother Res. 2010 Sep;24(9):1370-6.

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