Berberine: The Weight Loss Wonder Remedy?
Berberine is a chemical found in some plants like Bilberry, Goldenseal and Oregon Grape. It is bitter-tasting (Bitters stimulate the liver) and yellow-colored in appearance. People most commonly use Berberine for Eye Health, which there are very few plants/chemicals that can make a difference and Berberine is very effective on age-related or Diabetic eye conditions. It is also currently being used to lower High Cholesterol or to eliminate other fats in the blood, but recently it has been found to be very effective at weight loss, healing the gut and the effective processing of sugars.1, 2
Berberine as a replacement for the weight loss drug, Ozempic:
Berberine is now being used as a replacement for the expensive and hard-to-find Ozempic. “Ozempic stops the body from feeling hungry [or] stops the cravings,” says Neil Paulvin, a NY-based longevity and regenerative medicine doctor. 2 “It (also) slows down how the stomach empties, which is one of the main ways that Ozempic works. With Ozempic, people are losing five to 12, sometimes up to 16 pounds a month,” depending upon their age, diet and activity level. 2 Ozempic requires a prescription and costs on average “$1000/month.”2
Berberine is different from the drug Ozempic in a number of ways. Firstly, it is relatively cheap, doesn’t require a prescription and is NOT taken as a needle injection (which will be a relief to many people), so you don’t need to go to your doctor to use it and you don’t need to be Elon Musk to afford it. Berberine is administered as a tincture that you take in water or under your tongue and is available over the counter. Try to purchase it from a reputable Apothecary and in a liquid form, where it will be made strong, in-house and fresh, versus a commercially manufactured pill that will be relatively weak and have been warehouse for a period of time, lessening its effectiveness and absorption potential.
Berberine also does not replicate the actions of Ozempic, so there is no interference with the body’s natural rhythms, or Nervous System, which can cause complications down the road. Instead of altering the body’s communication system and food processing functions, according to Carl Giordano, a New Jersey Surgeon and Advocate for the plant remedy, Berberine improves “the way insulin works and the way your body can use carbohydrates. It makes people less insulin-resistant,” so sugar gets utilized and not stored into fat.1 This can also improve energy levels making exercise more enjoyable. Berberine can also help “the body bring sugar out of the system and into the cells, which in some cases additionally helps with weight loss.” 1 In summary, Berberine stimulates your body to correctly process carbohydrates through your system and then turn them into energy not fat. “Patients…lose two to four pounds a month at max” says Paulvin, but slow weight loss is healthier and often more permanent. 2
“I’m happy to talk about berberine as a weight reduction compound, says Giordano, but I think what’s really great about this is that that’s a springboard to get us to talk about the real health benefits of Berberine. Berberine is a real mechanism to work on chronic issues today that we see. We live in a state of chronic inflammation which leads to chronic illnesses as we get older,” says Giordano, who takes Berberine daily.” 2 According to both Giordano and Paulvin, Berberine offers even more potential health benefits over Ozempic.
- Decreases how much glucose cells ingest
- Works on cellular pathways that influence longevity
- Heals the gut and gets rid of infection
- Inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria in your gut
- Reduces inflammation throughout the body
- Slightly lowers cholesterol levels
What else should you know about berberine?
Berberine is safe for most adults. Some people have allergic reactions to certain supplements and depending on other medications you’re taking; you can have an adverse reaction to Berberine (ex. blood pressure med dosage as Berberine removes fat from arteries). People who are Diabetic or are on the petite side can possibly experience Hypoglycemia symptoms from taking Berberine because of its impact on sugar in the blood. 1
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, symptoms of Hypoglycemia can include:
This problem can possibly by eliminated by lowering the dosage and taking it with food.
There is also a possibility that taking Berberine can cause bloating or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Giordano says. To avoid this as much as possible, he suggests taking Berberine with meals.1
“I think the health benefits of Berberine are so good that it’s one of those things that everybody should consider taking, not just for the Blood Sugar [which can impact weight loss], but again, for longevity,” says Giordano. 1
- Giordano MD. Berberine-Uses, Side Effects, and More. https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-1126/berberine.
- Onque, Rene., Tiktokers Say Berberine is Nature’s Ozempic: Here’s What Doctors Want You To Know. 6/28/2023. https://www.cnbc.com/2023/06/28/berberine-is-being-called-natures-ozempic-heres-what-to-know.html