- Can exert antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, hypoglycaemic, hypotensive and hypolipidemic effects.
- Has remarkable effects for cardiovascular health.
- Standardised to 97% berberine, the highest percentage on the market.
Berberine 500mg is a superior quality supplement obtained from common barberry. It contains an exceptionally high level of berberine, a phytonutrient known for its remarkable effects on cardiovascular health and one which has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine.
Berberine is a substance produced by certain plants such as common barberry (Berberis vulgaris). It is an alkaloid – a “natural, organic compound with a complex molecular structure (heterocyclic), which has marked physiological properties, even at low doses” according to the hypothesis put forward by Winterstein and Trier. It’s a fascinating group of natural products with significant therapeutic potential.
In vitro, this alkaloid can exert antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, hypoglycaemic, hypotensive and hypolipidemic effects (1 – 2), its most important property being that of acting as a calcium channel blocker.
Which plants contain berberine? Apart from common barberry, berberine is also found in Mexican prickly poppy, goldenseal, Oregon grape, yellowroot and Berberis aristata, a shrub that grows in the Indian Himalayas.
Plants from the Berberis genus grow in all the world’s semi-tropical regions. That’s why berberine is such an integral part of the major systems of traditional medicine, such as Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine.
Our berberine supplement is obtained from Berberis vulgaris (common barberry) which grows predominantly in Iran, the world’s largest producer with 11,000 hectares of cultivation. Various parts of the plant are suitable for therapeutic use, namely the bark, the root and the stem, though it’s the dried barberries which are most commonly-used (3 – 4). It has been judged completely safe for human use by the American FDA (5).
Barberry contains other alkaloids such as oxyacanthine, berbamine, bervulcine and columbamine, but it’s berberine which attracts most interest among the scientific community. That’s why we’ve chosen to enrich our natural extract with berberine (guaranteed to contain 97% active principles).
Berberine has been widely studied for its properties and physiological effects. The plant from which it is extracted has been traditionally used for thousands of years: reference to the use of Berberis vulgaris for ‘purifying the blood’ has been found on clay tablets in the personal library of the Assyrian Emperor Ashurbanipal, dating back to 650 BC. It was also used in Ayurvedic medicine to treat infections, aid wound-healing and ‘open the mind’.
With an estimated intestinal absorption of between 0.4 and 1%, there are questions surrounding its bioavailability when taken orally, which is considered to be low (7). However, in vivo studies show that distribution of orally-ingested berberine in tissues is much greater than its concentration in blood. It is rapidly transported to the kidneys, muscles, heart, pancreas, liver and fat, where it is metabolised and converted into berberrubine, thalifendine and jatrorrhizine, its main active metabolites (8).
Scientists are currently investigating its mechanisms of action: hundreds of studies evaluating its benefits for cardiovascular health are published each year.
Pharmacokinetic interactions have already been observed when it is co-administered with cyclosporin A (used for treating auto-immune diseases) and metformin (used for reducing insulin-resistance in type 2 diabetes) (9).
The Berberis vulgaris extract offered by Supersmart is standardised to 97% berberine, the highest percentage available to buy on the market. It contains nothing else apart from natural acacia fibre and rice flour, completely safe, natural-source excipients. It represents a considerable technical achievement as producing berberine in a capsule is not easy.
There are several supplements available to buy at Supersmart which may be of interest for helping to prevent high blood sugar and improve cardiovascular health.
And if you like taking phytonutrients, you also have a number of options:
The therapeutic dose used in the majority of clinical studies is between 200mg and 500mg, two to three times a day. Supersmart’s berberine comes in 500mg vegetarian capsules, to be taken just before meals, at these same intervals.
If you find swallowing capsules hard, there’s nothing to prevent you from breaking open the capsules and diluting the contents in a glass of water, fruit juice or yoghurt. Berberine is actually converted by oral flora into dihydroberberine, which may be absorbed better in the gut (13).
Updated: April 2018
Note: this product should not be used as a substitute for a varied, balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. It’s important to follow the guidelines on how to take it and the recommended dose, and to use it by the ‘best before’ date. It is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, or for children under 15. Keep out of children’s reach. Store in a cool, dry place.
|Daily dose : 2 capsules
Number of doses per box : 30
|Amount per dose|
|Berberine (from 1040 mg Berberis vulgaris extract standardised to 97 % berberine)||1 000 mg|
|Other ingredients : Acacia gum, rice flour.|
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