Metabolic syndrome has become a huge healthcare burden in recent years, coupled with unhealthy work and lifestyles under increasingly high pressure. Some common metabolic syndrome includes obesity, diabetes, and hypertension.
When it comes to relieves for metabolic diseases, herbal medicine is more desirable for its multifactorial treatment targets, instead of chemically synergistic drugs that do not fare well in the treatment of chronic diseases as well as in triggering side effects for long-term use.
Ginseng is a traditional medicinal herb that has shown many health benefits, and its potential use for treating chronic diseases have attracted researchers’ attention.
Ginsenosides are the main active constituents in ginseng and metabolized rare ginsenosides are more bioactive than naturally occurring ginsenosides and show positive effects in supporting glucose health and blood circulation.
Scientists took an overall review of the current studies on the potential effects of ginsenoside Rg3 in metabolic syndrome and their possible mechanisms since ginsenoside Rg3 has been reported to exhibit anti-obesity, anti-hypertensive, anti-aging, anti-inflammatory effects.
In the review, animal studies revealed that ginsenoside Rg3 could reduce body weight and inflammation, intrahepatic triglyceride content, and improve insulin sensitivity so as to promote a healthy liver in animal models.
Obesity is a common metabolic chronic disease accompanied by insulin resistance. Ginsenoside Rg3 was found to reduce adipogenic protein expression, increase the expression of glucose transporter and insulin receptor protein to increase glucose uptake in obese mice.
Type 2 diabetes is a disease that is linked to the imbalance between insulin resistance and secretion. Ginsenoside Rg3 was indicated by many studies to improve glucose tolerance and insulin secretion, in addition to protective effects on oxidative stress.
Hypertension is a complication of diabetes and obesity triggered by kidney and nerve damage. Ginsenoside Rg3 showed brilliant performance in blood pressure decrease and vascular wall thickness, renin activity inhibition in cell and animal models. Central and peripheral arterial pressure decreased in healthy adults consuming ginsenoside Rg3 in a clinical trial.
There have been clinical trials designed to examine the potential health benefits of ginseng and ginsenosides on metabolic health.
Researchers from RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia conducted a systematic review to investigate the health benefits of Panax ginseng by evaluating existing randomized controlled trials on Panax ginseng.
The study revealed that Panax ginseng has positive results for improving glucose metabolism and moderating the immune response, and it may help treat some diseases like type 2 diabetes and chronic respiratory conditions.
Metabolic disorders are closely associated with impaired glucose intolerance and insulin resistance. Thanks to their bioactivity to promote healthy glucose levels and antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, ginsenosides show huge potential as a therapy to treat metabolic syndrome in the future.