Drugs A - Z
Banaba (Lagerstroemia speciosa L.)
Generic Name: Lagerstroemia speciosa
CategoryHerbs & Supplements
Banaba extract, banglang (Vietnam), bang-lang (Cambobia), bungor (Malaya, Sabah), Byers wonderful white crapemyrtle, crape myrtle, crepe myrtle, corosolic acid, ellagitannins (flosin B, reginin A, lagerstroemin), flos-reginae Retz, GlucosolTM, glucosal, intanin (Thailand), jarul (India), Lagerstroemia, Lagerstroemia indica, Lagerstroemia parviflora, Lagerstroemia speciosa, lasubine, Lythraceae (family), lythraceae alkaloids, Munchausia speciosa, Pride-of-India, pyinma, Queen's crape myrtle, Queens flower.
Banaba is a medicinal plant that grows in India, Southeast Asia, and the Philippines. Banaba has been used for blood sugar control. The hypoglycemic (blood sugar lowering) effect of banaba leaf extract is similar to that of insulin, which induces glucose transport from the blood into body cells.
Currently, research suggests that taking banaba extract, standardized to 1% corosolic acid, by mouth may lower blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes, however further evidence is needed before a firm conclusion can be made.
EvidenceDISCLAIMER: 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.
Preliminary research investigating the effects of banaba on diabetes report promising results. However, additional research is necessary before a firm conclusion can be made.
TraditionWARNING: 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.
Antibacterial, anti-obesity, antitumor, antitussive, dyspepsia (upset stomach), hyperlipidemia (high cholesterol), hypertriglyceridemia (elevated fatty acid compounds in the blood).
Adults (18 years and older)
There is no proven effective dose for banaba. For diabetes, 32 and 48 milligrams daily for two weeks has been used.
Children (younger than 18 years)
There is no proven effective dose for banaba in children.
SafetyDISCLAIMER: Many complementary techniques are practiced by healthcare professionals with formal training, in accordance with the standards of national organizations. However, this is not universally the case, and adverse effects are possible. Due to limited research, in some cases only limited safety information is available.
Avoid in individuals with a known allergy or hypersensitivity to banaba or its constituents.
Side Effects and Warnings
Banaba is generally considered to be safe when taken by mouth for up to 15 days for the treatment of type II diabetes. No adverse effects have been noted in the available research. Use cautiously in patients with diabetes since banaba may lower blood sugar.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Interactions with Drugs
Lagerstroemia indica has been shown to produce antithrombin activity. Caution is advised in patients with bleeding disorders or taking drugs that may increase the risk of bleeding. Dosing adjustments may be necessary.
Theoretically, banaba has been shown to produce insulin-like actions and therefore banaba may have additive effects when taken concomitantly with diabetic drugs. Medication adjustments may be necessary.
Caution is advised when taking concomitantly with xanthine oxidases.
Interactions with Herbs and Dietary Supplements
Lagerstroemia indica has been shown to produce antithrombin activity. Caution is advised in patients with bleeding disorders or taking herbs or supplements that may increase the risk of bleeding. Multiple cases of bleeding have been reported with the use of Ginkgo biloba, and fewer cases with garlic and saw palmetto. Numerous other agents may theoretically increase the risk of bleeding, although this has not been proven in most cases.
Banaba may lower blood sugar levels. Caution is advised when taking banaba with other herbs or supplements that may potentially alter blood sugar, such as fenugreek, garlic, or horse chestnut. Blood glucose levels may require monitoring, and doses may need adjustment.
This information is based on a systematic review of scientific literature, and was peer-reviewed and edited by contributors to the Natural Standard Research Collaboration (www.naturalstandard.com): Chi Dam, PharmD (Northeastern University); Tamara Milkin, PharmD (Northeastern University); Erica Rusie, PharmD (Nova Southeastern University); Shaina Tanguay-Colucci, BS (Natural Standard Research Collaboration); Catherine Ulbricht, PharmD (Massachusetts General Hospital); Wendy Weissner, BA (Natural Standard Research Collaboration); Jen Woods, BS (Northeastern University).
BibliographyDISCLAIMER: Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.
Chistokhodova N, Nguyen C, Calvino T, et al. Antithrombin activity of medicinal plants from central Florida. J Ethnopharmacol 2002;81(2):277-280.
Garcia LL, Fojas FR, Castro IR, et al. Pharmaceuticochemical and pharmacological studies on a crude drug from Lagerstroemia speciosa (L.) Pers. Philippine J Sci 1987;116:361-375.
Hattori K, Sukenobu N, Sasaki T, et al. Activation of insulin receptors by lagerstroemin. J Pharmacol Sci 2003;93(1):69-73.
Hayashi T, Maruyama H, Kasai R, et al. Ellagitannins from Lagerstroemia speciosa as activators of glucose transport in fat cells. Planta Med 2002;68(2):173-175.
Hong H, Jai Maeng W. Effects of malted barley extract and banaba extract on blood glucose levels in genetically diabetic mice. J Med Food 2004;7(4):487-490.
Hosoyama H, Sugimoto A, Suzuki Y, et al. [Isolation and quantitative analysis of the alpha-amylase inhibitor in Lagerstroemia speciosa (L.) Pers. (Banaba)]. Yakugaku Zasshi 2003;123(7):599-605.
Judy WV, Hari SP, Stogsdill WW, et al. Antidiabetic activity of a standardized extract (Glucosol) from Lagerstroemia speciosa leaves in Type II diabetics. A dose-dependence study. J Ethnopharmacol 2003;87(1):115-117.
Kakuda T, Sakane I, Takihara T, et al. Hypoglycemic effect of extracts from Lagerstroemia speciosa L. leaves in genetically diabetic KK-AY mice. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem 1996;60(2):204-208.
Matsuura T, Yoshikawa Y, Masui H, et al. [Suppression of glucose absorption by various health teas in rats.] [Article in Japanese.]. Yakugaku Zasshi 4;124(4):217-223.
Murakami C, Myoga K, Kasai R, et al. Screening of plant constituents for effect on glucose transport activity in Ehrlich ascites tumour cells. Chem Pharm Bull (Tokyo) 1993;41(12):2129-2131.
Suzuki Y, Unno T, Ushitani M, et al. Antiobesity activity of extracts from Lagerstroemia speciosa L. leaves on female KK-Ay mice. J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo) 1999;45(6):791-795.
Unno T, Sugimoto A, Kakuda T. Xanthine oxidase inhibitors from the leaves of Lagerstroemia speciosa (L.) Pers. J Ethnopharmacol 2004;93(2-3):391-395.