Guggul

Plant Part Used

Resin

Introduction

Guggul has been used in the Indian (Ayurvedic) medical system for centuries to treat a wide range of disorders. In the early 1960s, researchers began to explore the ancient Sanskrit description of guggul’s use by Ayurvedic physicians in the management of lipid disorders. After years of research and scientific studies, guggul was approved for marketing in India in 1986 as a lipid-lowering drug. Guggul is also frequently used in India for the management of arthritis and inflammatory conditions. (1)

Interactions and Depletions

Interactions

Dosage Info

Dosage Range

500-1000mg (standardized extract), 3 times a day.

Most Common Dosage

500mg (standardized extract), 3 times a day.

Standardization

[span class=doc]Standardization represents the complete body of information and controls that serve to enhance the batch to batch consistency of a botanical product, including but not limited to the presence of a marker compound at a defined level or within a defined range.[/span]

The most current available medical and scientific literature indicates that this dietary supplement should be standardized to 2.5-10% guggulsterones Z and E per dose.

Reported Uses

As mentioned, guggul has shown promise in the treatment of high cholesterol. Lowering cholesterol may lead to reduced risk of atherosclerosis and related cardiovascular diseases. Studies suggest that guggul can lower LDL (the so-called “bad" cholesterol) levels while increasing “good" cholesterol, or HDL, levels. (2) Scientists have identified at least three reasons for this lipid-lowering activity in the body. Other research points to guggul’s ability to reduce artherosclerotic plaque in the blood vessels. (3)

In addition to supporting overall circulatory health, guggul may also function as an antioxidant that can prevent the heart from being damaged by free radicals. (4)

Finally, guggul has also been studied for its potential as an anti-inflammatory agent comparable in strength to pharmaceutical agents such as ibuprofen. (5)

Toxicities & Precautions

Introduction

[span class=alert]Be sure to tell your pharmacist, doctor, or other health care providers about any dietary supplements you are taking. There may be a potential for interactions or side effects.[/span]

General

This dietary supplement is considered safe when used in accordance with proper dosing guidelines.

Health Conditions

If you have hyperthyroidism talk to your doctor before taking this dietary supplement.

Side Effects

Side effects are possible with any dietary supplement. This dietary supplement may cause minor gastrointestinal distress, skin rash, diarrhea and nausea. Tell your doctor if these side effects become severe or do not go away.

Pregnancy/ Breast Feeding

To date, the medical literature has not reported any adverse effects related to fetal development during pregnancy or to infants who are breast-fed. Yet little is known about the use of this dietary supplement while pregnant or breast-feeding. Therefore, it is recommended that you inform your healthcare practitioner of any dietary supplements you are using while pregnant or breast-feeding.

Age Limitations

To date, the medical literature has not reported any adverse effects specifically related to the use of this dietary supplement in children. Since young children may have undiagnosed allergies or medical conditions, this dietary supplement should not be used in children under 10 years of age unless recommended by a physician.

References

  1. View Abstract: Singh BB, Mishra LC, Vinjamury SP, Aquilina N, Singh VJ, Shepard N. The effectiveness of Commiphora mukul for osteoarthritis of the knee: an outcomes study. Altern Ther Health Med. May2003;9(3):74-9.
  2. View Abstract: Singh V, et al. Stimulation of Low Density Lipoprotein Receptor Activity in Liver Membrane of Guggulsterone Treated Rats. Pharmacol Res. 1990;22(1):37-44.
  3. Baldwa VS, et al. Effects of Commiphora Mukul (Guggul) in Experimentally Induced Hyperlipidemia and Atherosclerosis. J Assoc Physicians India. 1981;29(1):13-17.
  4. Satyavati GV, et al. Guggulipid: A Promising Hypolipidemic Agent from Gum Guggul (Commiphora Wightii). Econ Med Plant Res. 1991;5:48-82.
  5. View Abstract: Sharma JN, et al. Comparison of the Anti-inflammatory Activity of Commiphora Mukul (An Indigenous Drug) with Those of Phenylbutazone and Ibuprofen in Experimental Arthritis Induced by Mycobacterial Adjuvant. Arzneim-Forsch/Drug Res. Jul1977;27(7):1455-57.