Cut Sugar Cravings with Gymnema Sylvestre
Oh, sugar. The sweet siren that helped our ancestors survive by attracting them to crucial calories is singing still. Or make that screaming?
The difference is that while our lives no longer rely on occasional foraged berries, our evolutionary drive for sugar keeps luring us to a 10pm scoop of ice cream.
From coffee drinks to wine roadies and snack aisles, sugar has infiltrated the American diet, creating a “comfort food” industrial complex beyond Tollhouse’s wildest dreams. You may have a sweet tooth or get sucked into the hidden sugars of refined carbs like bread and pasta—we relate to both.
Sugar cravings can trick your body and brain into overindulging beyond what feels good to you or supports your overall health. Addressing this is not (just) about weight and vanity. As you hit this life stage, there are a number of reasons to keep an eye on your sugar intake:
- High blood sugar has been linked to worsening perimenopausal issues like hot flashes and mood swings.
- Sugar can mess with hormonal balance overall.
- It can possibly impact brain health down the road, and more.
In a cruel twist of fate, midlife's compromised sleep and hormonal shifts can kick sugar cravings into overdrive just when it might be time to cut back. Thankfully, gymnestra sylvestre is an effective herb that can help you take control of your cravings.
Gymnema sylvestre is great for reducing sugar cravings and curbing stress eating, but to be clear, we have no diet culture agenda. This is not a call to cut all “treats” from life. There’s no shame in our eating game; take pleasures where you choose. We’re simply offering natural ways to support changes you may want to make.
Why We Love Gymnema Sylvestre
- Gymnema sylvestre is an important ingredient in our Stave the Crave chai. Paired with calming herbs that curb stress-eating at the source, gymnema dulls the taste of sweet foods, so it can make oreos seem less enticing and help you make conscious choices about which snacks would really hit the spot.
- Gymnema sylvestre contains a wide variety of potent medicinal compounds. There’s promising research that gymnema could be used for digestive and liver support as well as a natural antiviral and antibiotic ingredient. This is one herb to watch!
Cuts sugar cravings - gymnema sylvestre leaves contain gymnemic acid, which binds to sugar receptors on the tongue and decreases the intensity of sweet tastes. Most people find that sweets are less appealing after taking gymnema and consume less sugar.
Lowers blood sugar - gymnema sylvestre temporarily decreases the effectiveness of intestinal sugar receptors so they absorb less of it into your bloodstream. So not only does gymnema help you eat less sugar, it keeps it from staying in your body. These benefits are drawing attention and research to gymnema as a potential support for diabetes symptoms.
Decreases inflammation - gymnema contains compounds called tannins and saponins that naturally reduce inflammation. The combined effects of tannins and saponins with decreased sugar consumption make gymnema sylvestre a great herb to keep inflammation at bay.
Gymnema sylvestre’s main traditional use is as an Ayurvedic diabetes treatment. It has also been used for inflammation, asthma, and snakebites.
About the Plant:
Gymnema sylvestre, which is also known as gymnema, gurmar, and Australian cowplant, is a climbing shrub with woody branches, oval leaves ending in a point, and clusters of small yellowish flowers. It grows in tropical and subtropical forests throughout Africa, Asia, and Oceania.
Things to Know about Gymnema:
Gymnema sylvestre is generally considered very safe, but it’s not for everyone. Because it can lower blood sugar, avoid taking this herb if you already have low blood sugar and discontinue use if you start getting headaches or feeling nauseous, lightheaded, or shaky.
You should also avoid taking gymnema if you’re on medication to manage diabetes.
Gymnema sylvestre is not recommended for children or for pregnant or breastfeeding people.
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- Women’s Health Team. “Controlling Your Blood Sugar Can Improve Your PCOS and Hormone Imbalance.” Cleveland Clinic, February 15, 2023. https://health.clevelandclinic.org/polycystic-ovary-syndrome-pill-not-remedy/.
This article is intended for informational purposes and is not intended to replace a one-on-one medical consultation with a professional. Wile, Inc researches and shares information and advice from our own research and advisors. We encourage every woman to research, ask questions and speak to a trusted health care professional to make her own best decisions.