Diabetes is a disease that causes a malfunction in the production of insulin from the pancreas, which is a very important hormone for balancing blood sugar in your body. What if I told you that harmine, an ingredient found in Ayahuasca, could help treat this condition? Recent studies show some pretty interesting results.
It is a well-known fact that diabetes affects millions of patients around the world. In America alone, the numbers are estimated at around 20 million, according to the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention (CDC).
The cause of diabetes may not be understood well, but the good news is that there is a new discovery that is said to reverse or even cure diabetes!
Harmine: A New Potential Treatment for Diabetes?
The chemical that is the source of hope to many is Ayahuasca, a chemical that is normally found in some plants indigenous to Peruvian Amazon.
A recent study done by scientists at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and funded by JDRF and the National Institutes of Health discovered that the plant’s chemical known as harmine had the ability to reproduce insulin-producing Beta Cells. It was found that it was the only chemical with that ability to normalize glycemic control in diabetic mice out of the tested 100,000!
Beta cells are usually located in the pancreas and serve the task of producing insulin which in turn regulates the blood sugar levels. Adults and children who are diagnosed with diabetes Type 1 are usually have lost about 99 percent of their beta cells, meaning that they cannot produce enough insulin to control their blood sugar.
On the other hand, those who are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes will normally have lost around 50 percent of their beta cells. The scientists first noticed that harmine could reproduce beta cells in culture but then it had the same effects when they introduced human islets into a diabetic mouse before administering the chemical.
The amazing thing is that it tripled the number of cells in the mice! According to Dr. Andrew Stewart-the director of Icahn’s Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism Institute, the research represents a huge step towards finding a treatment for diabetes albeit with some specific improvements still required.
The challenge that lies ahead of these researchers is trying to find a solution and ironically it is to another chemical found in ayahuasca known as dimethyltryptamine.
This psychoactive chemical in the plants has been tapped for the purpose of treating alcoholism, PSTD, chronic anxiety, but it has been known to be dangerous in the sense it may induce psychedelic experience – if not properly controlled.
This has seen the drug classified as a Schedule 1 in the US meaning that it has no accepted medical use and may result in abuse.
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