Therapeutic Utility Of Spirulina In Diabetes Mellitus

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Introduction

Noncommunicable diseases are increasing to alarming proportions and gaining their hold over the developing countries. One of the noncommunicable diseases that has gained importance is diabetes mellitus because of its rising prevalence. Worldwide, the number of cases of diabetes is currently estimated to be around 150 million. This number is predicted to double by 2025, with the greatest number of cases being expected in China and India.3 The rising prevalence of diabetes and its associated complications place a high burden on the health care systems. The major therapeutic goal in diabetic patients therefore, is to optimize blood glucose control in order to improve the well-being of the patients and reduce the risk of diabetes-induced complications. The recent years have witnessed a renewed interest in identifying probiotics, antioxidants, neutraceuticals, and designer foods that can be used as alternative therapies for sustaining and managing health. This prompted us to assess the efficacy of Spirulina in the management of diabetes mellitus.

Methodology

The study was designed as a clinical intervention trial. Patients with T2DM were recruited from the Diabetes Clinics of Vadodara with the consent of the consulting physician and patients. The patients were kept under an observation for a period of 4 months. After the observation period, the patients (n = 30, females: n = 13, males: n = 17) were supplemented with 2 g/day Spirulina tablets for 4 months. The patients were asked to take two tablets (500 g each) along with lunch and two tablets (500 g each) with dinner. Patients were asked to maintain their habitual diet, medication regimen and level of physical activity throughout the study period. Follow-up evaluations were carried out at intervals of 2 and 4 months.

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