Barberry is a plant that boasts many health benefits. It contains berberine, which has been shown to inhibit the growth of bacteria and boost the immune system. Barberry extract offers benefits for the cardiovascular system as well as the neural systems. Health benefits of barberry include the ability to fight infection, treat diabetes, improve heart health and more.
Health Benefits of Barberry
1. Fights Infection
Health benefits of barberry include the ability to fight infection. Berberine has antibacterial, anti-fungal and anti-protozoal properties. It prevents bacteria from being able to attach to human cells and cause infection. Health benefits of barberry also include the ability to fight inflammation in the body. The plant can help relieve common ailments, including a sore throat, congestion, sinusitis and bronchitis. Barberry can also help combat bladder infections and urinary tract infections. (1)
2. Aids the GI Tract
Health benefits of barberry include the ability to treat gastrointestinal problems. The berberine content helps to soothe the muscles that line the intestines, to help improve digestion. Barberry can help treat diarrhea and gastrointestinal pain. Studies suggest that barberry may be even more effective at quickly treating gastrointestinal problems, compared to antibiotics.
3. Prevents and Treats Diabetes
Health benefits of barberry include the ability to prevent and treat diabetes. Research has shown that taking 500 milligrams of berberine 2-3 times per day is able to control blood sugar and lipid metabolism just as effectively as metformin, a common diabetes drug. In a study published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, researchers found that berberine can also improve insulin sensitivity. (2)
4. Improves Heart Health
Health benefits of barberry include the ability to improve cardiovascular health. Studies have shown that the plant can be used as an effective natural remedy for improving hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias, cardiomyopathy and ischemic heart disease. In a 2015 study, researchers found that health benefits of barberry also include the ability to improve atrial fibrillation as well as cholesterol and triglycerides.
5. Combats Metabolic Syndrome
Research has shown that health benefits of barberry include the ability to combat metabolic syndrome, a metabolic disorder that may include abdominal obesity, high blood sugar, high triglyceride levels, high blood pressure or low HDL cholesterol. In a 2014 study, researchers found that barberry supplementation was able to suppress oxidative stress in the body, which plays a major role in fighting metabolic syndrome.
6. Cleanses the Liver and Gallbladder
Health benefits of barberry include the ability to cleanse liver and gallbladder function. The liver is responsible for detoxing the blood, breaking down hormones, storing essential nutrients and producing bile. Berberine helps with bile secretion and aids in the digestive process. It also works as a natural gallbladder flush agent to help remove toxins from the body and improve liver and gallbladder health. (3)