Diabetes: Rescue by Boerhaavia diffusa


  • Institute of Science, Banaras Hindu University, Pineal Research Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, 221005, India


The incidence of diabetes, a metabolic disorder, is increasing at a very rapid pace globally but hypoglycemic drugs like insulin, bioguanides, thiazolidiones and sulphonylureas, which produce several adverse side effects, are still the main stay for its treatment. However, the traditional medicines derived from plants have lesser side effects and are of low cost. Boerhaavia diffusa, belonging to Nyctaginaceae family, also known as Punarnava, has great many medicinal properties and is one of the oldest medicines described in Ayurveda for the treatment of a number of diseases including diabetes. B. diffusa has been reported to be diuretic, anti-inflammatory, anticonvulsant, antifibrolytic, antibacterial, antidiabetic, hepatoprotective, immunosuppressive, nephroprotective, antiasthamatic, antihelminitic, etc. It contains alkaloids, flavanoids, lipids, carbohydrates, steroids, lignins, proteins, triterpeniods, glycoproteins, β-sitosterol, α-2-sitosterol, ester of β-sitosterol, palmitic acid, β-ecdyosone, hexacosanoic, tetracosanoic, arachidonic and stearic acids, etc., which might be responsible for its curative properties. The present review focuses on the antidiabetic/hypoglycaemic property of this miracle plant.


Antidiabetic, Boerhaavia diffusa, Diabetes, Hypoglycemic, Punarnava

Full Text:


Arora S, Haldar C, Gupta S. Hamster as a model for diabetic study. Int J Res Med Sci Tech. 2018; 6:245–50.

Li XY, Lu SS Wang HL, et al. Effects of fenugreek extracts on high fat diet-fed and streptozotocin-induced type 2 diabetic mice. Animal Model Exp Med. 2018;1(1):68–73.

Bhatia V, Kinja K, Bishnoi H, Savita S, Gnaneshwari D. Antidiabetic activity of the alcoholoic extract of the aerial part of Boerhaavia diffusa in rats. Recent Res Sci Technol. 2011; 3(7):04–07.

Murti K, Lambole V, Panchal M, Kumar U. Antidiabetic and antihyperlipidemic activity of roots of Boerhaavia diffusa on streptozotocin induced diabetic rats. Pharmacologyonline 2011; 1:15–21.

Malhotra D, Ishaq F, Khan A. Antihyperglycemic activity of Boerhaavia diffusa in streptozotocin induced diabetic rats. Int J Chem Anal Sci. 2014; 5(1):21–23.

Tiwari BK, Pandey KB, Abidi AB, Rizvi SI. Therapeutic potential of Indian medicinal plants in diabetic condition. Ann Phytomed. 2013; 2(1): 37–43.

Nisha M, Vinod BM, Sunil C. Evaluation of Boerhavia erecta L. for potential antidiabetic and antihyperlipidemic activities in streptozotocin-induced diabetic Wistar rats. Future J Pharma Sci. 2018; 4:150–5.

Pari L, Satheesh MA. Antidiabetic activity of Boerhaavia diffusa L.: effect on hepatic key enzymes in experimental diabetes. J Ethnopharmacol. 2004; 91:109–13.

Modak M, Dixit P, Jayant L, Ghaskadbi S, Devasagayam TPA. Indian herbs and herbal drugs used for the treatment of diabetes. J Clin Biochem Nutr. 2007; 40:163–73.

Rajpoot K, Mishra R N. Boerhaavia diffusa roots (Punarnava mool)-Review as Rasayana (Rejuvenator/Antiaging). Int J Res Pharma Biomed Sci.. 2011; 2(4):1451–60.

Rao PP. Ophthalmic uses of Boerhaavia diffusa L. (Punarnava): Review. Int J Herbal Med. 2016; 4(2):05–09.

Mishra S, Aeri V, Gaur PK, Jhachak SM. Phytochemical, therapeutic, and ethnopharmacolgical overview for a traditionally important herb: Boerhaavia diffusa Linn. Biomed Res Int. 2014; Doi:10.1155/2014/808302.

Olaleye, MT, Akinmoladun, AC, Ogunboye, AA, Akindahunsi, AA. Antioxidant activity and hepatoprotective property of leaf extracts of Boerhaavia diffusa Linn against acetaminophen-induced liver damage in rats. Food Chem Toxicol. 2010; 48:2200–05.

Nalamolu RK, Boini KM, Nammi S. Effect of chronic administration of Boerhaavia diffusa Linn. leaf extract on experimental diabetes in rats. Trop J Pharm Res. 2004; 3(1):305–09.

Chauhan SK, Thapliyal RP, Ojha SK, Rai H, Singh P, Singh M. Antidiabetic and antioxidant effect of ethanolic root extract of Boerhaavia diffusa in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. J Pharm Res. 2011; 4(2):446–48.

Nim DK, Shankar P, Chaurasia R, Goel B, Dixit RK. Clinical evaluation of anti-hyperglycemic activity of Boerhaavia diffusa in comparison with glibenclamide in the rat model of T2DM. JGTPS. 2013; 4(1):973–82.

Chude MA, Orisakwe OE, Afonne OJ, et al.. Hypoglycemic effect of the aqueous extract of Boerhavia diffusa leaves. Indian J Pharmacol. 2001; 33:215–6.

Anamika S, Kumar GR. Effect of the aqueous extract of Boerhaavia diffusa roots and leaves of hypoglycemic as well as immuno support activity. Int Res J Biol Sci. 2012; 1(6):62–5.

Satheesh MA, Pari L. Antioxidant effect of Boerhavia diffusa L. in tissues of alloxan induced diabetic rats. Indian J Exp Biol. 2004; 42(10):989–92.

Alam P, Shahzad N, Gupta AK, et al. Anti-diabetic effect of Boerhavia diffusa L. root extract via free radical scavenging and antioxidant mechanism. Toxicol Environ Health Sci. 2018; 10:220–7.


  • There are currently no refbacks.