fenugreek (generic name)

an herbal product - treats Galactagogue, Diabetes mellitus type 2, Diabetes mellitus type 1, and Hyperlipidemia
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Herbs & Supplements

Synonyms

Abish, alholva, bird's foot, bockhornsklover, bockshornklee, bockshornsamen, cemen, chilbe, diosgenin, fenegriek, fenogreco, fenogrego, fenigreko, fenugree, fenugreek seed, fenu-thyme, foenugraeci semen, gorogszena, graine de fenugrec, gray hay, Greek hay seed, griechische Heusamen, fieno greco, halba, hilbeh, hulba, hu lu ba, kasoori methi, kozieradka pospolita, kreeka lambalaats, mente, mentikura, mentula, methi, methika, methini, methri, methro, mithiguti, pazhitnik grecheskiy, penantazi, sag methi, sambala, sarviapila, shabaliidag, shambelile, trigonella, trigonelline, trogonella semen, uluhaal, uwatu, vendayam, venthiam.

Background

Fenugreek has a long history of medical uses in Indian and Chinese medicine, and has been used for numerous indications, including labor induction, aiding digestion, and as a general tonic to improve metabolism and health.

Preliminary study has suggested possible hypoglycemic (blood sugar lowering) and anti-hyperlipidemic properties of fenugreek seed powder when taken by mouth. However, at this time, the evidence is not sufficient to recommend either for or against fenugreek for diabetes or hyperlipidemia. Nonetheless, caution is warranted in patients taking blood sugar-lowering agents, in whom blood glucose levels should be monitored. Hypokalemia (lowered potassium levels in the blood) has also been reported, and potassium levels should be followed in patients taking concomitant hypokalemic agents, or with underlying cardiac disease.

Evidence

DISCLAIMER: These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.

Diabetes mellitus type 1: Review of the literature suggests a possible efficacy of fenugreek in type 1 diabetics. Although promising, these data cannot be considered definitive. At this time there is insufficient evidence to recommend either for or against the use of fenugreek for type 2 diabetes.
Grade: C

Diabetes mellitus type 2: Fenugreek has been found to lower serum glucose levels both acutely and chronically. Although promising, these data cannot be considered definitive, and at this time there is insufficient evidence to recommend either for or against fenugreek for type 2 diabetes. Additional study is warranted in this area.
Grade: C

Galactagogue (breast milk stimulant): Traditionally in India, fenugreek has been used to increase milk flow. Additional study is needed to confirm this finding.
Grade: C

Hyperlipidemia: There is insufficient evidence to support the use of fenugreek as a hyperlipidemic agent.
Grade: C

Tradition

WARNING: DISCLAIMER: The below uses are based on tradition, scientific theories, or limited research. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider. There may be other proposed uses that are not listed below.
Abortifacient (induces abortion), abscesses, antioxidant, aphthous ulcers, appetite stimulant, asthenia, atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), baldness, beriberi (vitamin B1 deficiency), boils, breast enhancement, bronchitis, burns, cancer, cellulitis, chapped lips, colic, colon cancer, constipation, convalescence (gradual healing), cough (chronic), dermatitis, diarrhea, digestion, dropsy, dysentery, dyspepsia (upset stomach), eczema, energy enhancement, food uses, furunculosis (acute skin disease), gas, gastritis, gastric ulcers, gout (foot inflammation), heart conditions, Helicobacter pylori infection, hepatic disease, hepatomegaly, hernia, high blood pressure, immunomodulator, impotence, indigestion, infections, inflammation, inflammatory bowel disease, insecticide, labor induction (uterine stimulant), leg edema, leg ulcers, leukemia, lice, liver damage, low energy, lymphadenitis (inflammation of the lymph nodes), menopausal symptoms, myalgia (muscle pain), postmenopausal vaginal dryness, protection against alcohol toxicity, rickets, splenomegaly (enlarged spleen), stomach upset, thyroxine induced hyperglycemia, tuberculosis, vitamin deficiencies, wound healing.
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