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International Journal of Pharmacology

Year: 2011  |  Volume: 7  |  Issue: 4  |  Page No.: 419 - 439

Pharmacology and Phytochemistry of Pakistani Herbs and Herbal Drugs Used for Treatment of Diabetes

Asia Karim, Muhammad Nouman Sohail, Saba Munir and Saba Sattar


After twenty years Pakistan will be the fourth largest country with respect to the diabetic individuals. For a developing country like Pakistan availability of modren medical facilities to every person is not possible. In addition to economic constrains, reported side effects of these modern drugs encouroged us to search for an economical and safe alternative that can cure this disease. Herbal plants (cheaper availability and with less or no side effects) have emerged as a potential candidate. This review focuses the effectiveness of herbs and herbal drugs which are commonly used in Pakistan against diabetes. Different search engines were explored including Pubmed, Google and Asci database (up to 2nd June 2011) by using different keywords. Priority was given to research article and information given by authentic organizations and federations. Ninteen plants, which were used by local people as vegetable or herbal remedy, were analyzed for their antidiabetic potentials on the basis of previously published literature. Varying levels of antioxidant, antihyperlipidemic, Insulin stimulating, nephroprotective and hepatoprotective activities of these plants have been reported in various studies. Out of the ninteen herbs O. sanctum, Z. officinale, T. foenum-graecum and P. amarus were found to be the most effective against diabetes. In future adaptive use of these herbs in daily life as food may help to slow down the pace of disease development in Pakistan. There are plenty of herbs for which the medicinal value is still to be inquired so that they can replace and used as an alternate of synthetic drugs.

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