Many plant compounds help with weight loss. Among them, the relatively newer one is berberine. Recently, the plant compound has gained popularity in the weight loss market. Being an alkaloid compound, it is one of the safest ways to aid you in weight loss.
In this article, you will find everything about berberine and how it helps with weight loss. Jump right into the article to find out about berberine and its weight-loss properties!
What Is Berberine?
Berberine is a bioactive compound, specifically a quaternary ammonium salt which is found in certain plants. Some of the plants that contain this compound are Berberis aristata (tree turmeric), Californian poppy, Chinese goldthread, Goldenseal, Yellowroot, Oregon grape, Barberry, Prickly poppy, etc.
This compound is found in yellow color and due to this it is also used as a dye. Research has shown many benefits for this compound.
It has proven beneficial in balancing blood sugar levels, fighting inflammation, aiding in cardiac health, acting as an antibacterial agent, treating diabetes, etc. Berberine has an active role in Chinese traditional medicine.
How Does Berberine Work?
Studies have shown that berberine can affect the various functions of your cells. It connects with certain molecular targets inside your body and controls the functions associated with them. One of the major functions of berberine is to instigate an enzyme known as AMPK (AMP-activated protein kinase).
This enzyme is also known as a “metabolic master switch” and can be found in various parts of your body such as the brain, muscles, heart, kidney, and liver. By activating this enzyme, berberine can impact your metabolism.
Berberine And Weight Loss
Research published in the Diabetes Journal in 2006 found that berberine can inhibit the genes that affect fat formation. It can also enhance the production of protein mRNA in the muscles. Both these processes can activate your metabolism and help with fat burning.
Another research proved that it can activate the AMP-activated protein kinase, an enzyme that can aid in glucose metabolism and energy release. In short, we can say that berberine can help in reducing fat and activate lipid and sugar metabolism in your body.
Another study published in the BioMed Research International journal in 2020 found that berberine supplementation can reduce appetite and can be helpful in the prevention of obesity. The research was conducted among rats and found that rats injected with berberine ate less food compared to other rats without it.
Several other studies have found that berberine can improve insulin sensitivity and lead to weight loss as a result. They also evidenced the effect of this component in reducing body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference.
Ways Berberine Helps With Weight Loss
There is a myriad of ways through which berberine can aid in weight loss. Some of these are listed below:
◼ Helps curb your appetite
Studies have shown that berberine can affect appetite regulation. Consuming berberine will lead you to improved satiety and thereby reduce the calorie intake. This will positively affect weight loss.
◼ Improves gut bacteria
Berberine can positively affect the gut bacteria that play a crucial role in your metabolism. By improving the gut flora, it can aid in metabolism and thereby weight loss.
◼ Inhibits fat formation
Studies have shown that berberine can inhibit fat formation in your body. This will help with weight loss and lowering your body mass index.
◼ Enhances insulin sensitivity
Consuming berberine can improve insulin sensitivity. This will combat higher insulin levels in your body and can help you with weight loss.
◼ Positively affects appetite hormones
Berberine can affect appetite hormones such as GLP-1. This will improve the secretion of these hormones and thereby accelerate your satiety levels.
Other Health Benefits Of Berberine
Apart from weight loss, berberine has other health benefits. Some of these are listed below:
✅ Balances your blood sugar levels: One of the crucial health benefits of berberine is that it can balance your blood sugar levels. This is extremely helpful in patients with type 2 diabetes. By increasing glycolysis and decreasing insulin resistance, berberine can help to regulate sugar levels.
✅ Maintains your cholesterol levels: Another benefit of berberine is that it can lower cholesterol levels. This will help in reducing the onset of cardiac diseases.
✅ Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties: Berberine is packed with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that can fight inflammation in your body.
✅ Treats fatty liver: Berberine can reduce fat formation in your body, and it can decrease the chance of fatty liver.
✅ Aids in depression: Some studies have shown that berberine supplementation can be used to treat depression.
✅ Reduces infections: Berberine has natural properties to fight infection in your body and can inhibit the growth of certain viruses, fungi, and bacteria.
How To Take Berberine?
It is suggested that berberine should be taken from 900-2000 mg a day. This dosage can be divided into four doses for your convenience. Medical experts suggest that berberine should be taken with a meal or after that.
Also, make sure not to exceed the dosage limit as too much berberine can harm your stomach and cause cramps and diarrhea.
The Bottom Line
On going through the article, you can understand that berberine has many health benefits. One of the crucial health benefits of berberine is weight loss. It can also balance blood sugar levels, reduce blood pressure, fight against infections and inflammations, etc.
Berberine can reduce fat accumulation in your body and suppress your hunger. It can also improve gut bacteria and positively affect hunger hormones. Through these activities, berberine can help you lose weight successfully.
Frequently Asked Questions
Studies show that around 3.6% of body weight can be lost using berberine for 12 weeks.
Yes. Berberine can reduce belly fat and lower waist circumference.
It is suggested that you should consume berberine for at least 12 weeks for weight loss.
Berberine shouldn’t be consumed by breastfeeding mothers and infants.
Some kinds of side effects such as constipation, diarrhea, stomach problems, headache, and cramps are reported for berberine.