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Metformin Blog

Blog- Next Health - Next Health

Blog- Next Health - Next Health

If you havent heard of Metformin yet, chances are you soon will. Its one of the biggest unkept secrets of celebrities and billionaires who are looking to extend their lives indefinitely. Metformin, produced from the French lilac plant, has actually been around for decades as a safe, effective treatment for diabetes. Before it was a pharmaceutical, Metformin has been in use as an herbal remedy for frequent urination, measles, and worms, among other conditions. Recently, Metformin has seen a surge of interest in the burgeoning field of longevity science. Numerous studies, mostly on diabetes, have shown that people taking Metformin tend to have fewer heart attacks and cancer diagnoses, and it also seems to stave off dementia and Alzheimers. In addition, people appear to live longer and put off most age-related disease for a greater number of years as compared to people not on the drug. Metformin thus seems to work to not only to increase lifespans but also to increase health spans, which is arguably more important. How does it work? Metformin has been shown to increase the production of mTOR and AMPK, both of which promote youthful function inside the cell, promote fat utilization, and decrease sugar storage. Cellular AMPK levels decline with age, which biologically leads to some of the cellular signs of aging, such as the inability to repair damaged DNA. Considering the overwhelming evidence, the FDA has now approved the first longevity study ever, called TAME (Targeting Aging with Metformin), which aims to prove these benefits over the long term. Like any drug, Metformin does have some possible side effects, such as low blood sugar and gastrointestinal disturbances (diarrhea, nausea, gas). A potentially serious side effect, lactic acidosis, (symptoms include tiredness, Continue reading >>

What To Know About Metformin

What To Know About Metformin

Metformin is considered a first-line drug for people who have Type 2 diabetes . While there are a growing number of classes of drugs to help treat Type 2 diabetes, most clinical guidelines suggest that metformin be prescribed first. Why? Metformin is safe, effective, and inexpensive. In addition, metformin may provide other health benefits besides helping to lower blood sugar. But metformin remains somewhat shrouded in mystery and controversy. Not everyone understands how it works, and many people claim that its dangerous and should be avoided like the plague (we can thank the Internet for perpetuating some of these unfounded facts). While metformin isnt for everyone, theres a lot about this drug thats helpful and important to know. Metformin has been around for a long time. Metformin contains a substance called guanidine, which can lower blood sugars. Guanidine is found in an herb called goats rue (also known as French lilac), and this herb has been used to treat diabetes since the early 1900s. The FDA approved metformin in 1995, although its been used in the UK since 1958. Metformin can be used to treat prediabetes . About 84 million people in the U.S. have prediabetes. Most of them dont know they have it. And without intervention, about 70% of them will go on to develop Type 2 diabetes. The Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) , a landmark clinical trial, showed that lifestyle changes (weight loss, healthy eating, physical activity) can lower the risk of getting Type 2 diabetes by close to 60%. It also showed that taking metformin can lower the risk by 31%. Data from the ongoing DPP study indicates that lifestyle changes or metformin could reduce or delay the onset of Type 2 diabetes by up to 15 years. There are different ways to take metformin. Metformin comes as a ta Continue reading >>

Metformin + Pcos

Metformin + Pcos

“But I don’t have high blood sugar? Why am I on the diabetes drug Metformin?” Metformin, aka Glucophage, is a common treatment option for PCOS and many wonder why it is chosen. {Side note: in order to understand the role of Metformin, you might want to review the previous post on PCOS and insulin.} The state of insulin resistance so common with PCOS promotes an environment where extra glucose and lots of insulin hang out in the bloodstream. That glucose wants to get in your cells to give you energy (and that’s why you are so tired all the time!). Those very high insulin levels seen in PCOS drain you even more and are behind the acanthosis nigricans, carb cravings, irregular periods, and even affects your sleep. Want to find a way to treat your PCOS without dieting? Get Julie’s FREE Road Map: Your First 3 Steps Toward Food Peace with PCOS. Metformin steps in making your cells more sensitive to insulin: that’s why it’s referred to as an insulin sensitizer. It helps the glucose actually get in your cells, giving you the energy you need. Many report having more energy and less carb cravings after starting metformin. Metformin has another job: it stops the liver from making and sending out so much glucose. Most people connect Metformin with blood sugar since it is a common diabetes drug. Although it affects blood sugar, most people with PCOS on metformin have normal blood sugar levels. Also, insulin levels are MUCH higher in PCOS than diabetes so more Metformin is necessary compared to people with diabetes. Metformin affects more than just insulin and glucose. In addition to reducing blood glucose and insulin levels, Metformin has been shown to improve menstrual irregularities, fertility, and ovulation rates. Metformin may also slow the progression of type 2 Di Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes Blog

Type 2 Diabetes Blog

A few years ago, my doctor mentioned to me that my blood glucose numbers were creeping up. Her words struck terror in my heart. A little background: I come from a family ravaged by diabetes. My mom had gestational diabetes while pregnant with me, and unlike most women, it never went away. I remember the little bottles of insulin (MPH-U40) and the daily needles. My mom took it in stride, but it frightened me. She experienced blindness and several amputations before dying at the age of 53. My sister became a Type I diabetic at the age of 11. While at home under my mom’s watchful eye, she was pretty healthy. But four years of partying and neglecting her health while at college resulted in kidney failure. I donated a kidney to her, but it was subsequently damaged by a staph infection. She spent the rest of her life on dialysis, and died way too early at the age of 47. My cousin Tony, had a similar experience and passed away young as well. In light of that history, the LAST thing I wanted to hear was that I was inching ever closer to the diagnosis of diabetes. I exercised, tried to keep my weight in check, but according to my physician, it was inevitable. The doctor handed me a blue prescription slip. It said “METFORMIN”. Knowing I was upset, the doctor added helpfully “It can help you lose a few pounds, too.” I shoved the blue paper into my purse and hurriedly left her office. “Hell, no.” I said to myself. “Not gonna happen.” So I never filled the prescription. More exercise and better eating was a more acceptable prescription. And because that doctor kept bugging me about taking the medicine, I changed doctors. This went on for a few years. I would exercise, and eat better. Go to the doctor who would say “ Your blood glucose is elevated, you should star Continue reading >>

Is Metformin An Anti-aging Drug?

Is Metformin An Anti-aging Drug?

As we age, we all lose sensitivity to insulin and begin, gradually or rapidly, to poison our bodies with excess sugar in the blood. This happens to almost everyone, and it is only when the symptom is particularly severe that it is diagnosed as (type 2) diabetes. Metformin is a drug that has been used to treat diabetes for 50 years, but it is only recently that epidemiologists have begun to notice that patients on metformin have lower rates of cancer and heart disease. Of course, cancer and heart disease were elevated to begin with in diabetics. But the question has been asked: will metformin provide a benefit for “normal” aging, and lower cancer risk for people who are not diagnosed with diabetes? Vladimir Anisimov from University of Glasgow has proposed that it’s time to test metformin for its anti-cancer and life extension potential for non-diabetics. He is a biostatistician, an epidemiologist and not a physiologist. But a good part of the reason to think that this might work comes from theory. Metformin and Caloric Restriction The only intervention that is known to consistently extend life span across many different species is caloric restriction. Animals seem to be widely adapted to stabilize their populations by suppressing death from aging under conditions of starvation (and raising the internally-programmed death rate when there is plenty of food). How does the individual metabolism detect when it is starving? The signal comes mainly from the insulin metabolism. The body responds to chronically elevated insulin by decreasing sensitivity to insulin, and raising insulin levels yet further in a positive feedback loop that cascades toward death. Metformin interrupts this cycle in a manner similar to lowered food intake. Since most people don’t tolerate chroni Continue reading >>

Janumet (sitagliptin-metformin) Patient Reviews

Janumet (sitagliptin-metformin) Patient Reviews

Janumet 50 1000 ( see details ) is the brand name (and dosage level) of sitagliptin-metformin , a combination prescription drug used in the management of type 2 diabetes . (50 refers to 50 mg of sitagliptin while 1000 refers to 1000 mg of metformin .) In addition to diet and exercise, Janumet 50 1000 is prescribed when the use of metformin or sitagliptin alone does not adequately control the condition. At PatientsLikeMe , where more than 130,000 patients are sharing their experiences with conditions , symptoms , treatments and more, 21 patients report using Janumet 50 1000 or a lower daily dosage (50 mg sitagliptin / 500 mg metformin). What can we learn from these patients experiences? Quite a bit, actually, thanks to PatientsLikeMes unique data-sharing platform. Looking at the three treatment evaluations submitted for Janumet, all three patients rate the effectiveness as Moderate, while side effects were marked as Mild, Moderate and Severe, respectively. The chief complaint from the patient who reported Severe side effects was diarrhea . However, she writes, Blood sugars are going down. What about you? Have you taken Janumet 50 1000 or a different dosage of this combination diabetes medication? Join PatientsLikeMe and add your experiences to our growing body of knowledge. Then, stay to exchange advice and support, research common treatments and learn from other patients like you. Continue reading >>

Metformin: Uses, Benefits And Side Effects

Metformin: Uses, Benefits And Side Effects

Metformin: uses, benefits and side effects It is on the World Health Organisations List of Essential Medicines; the medications considered to be the most safe and essential in a healthcare system. Metformin in also called by the brand names Bolamyn, Diagemet, Glucient, Glucophage, and Metabet. Over 21 million items of metformin were prescribed by GP surgeries in England in 2017 (source: openprescribing.net). Metformin (met-FOR-min) is a antihyperglycemic drug used to treat type 2 diabetes and sometimes polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). It is the first-line medication for type 2 diabetes in the UK. Metformin is a biguanide, part of a family of compounds that share a similar chemical structure. It is the only biguanide available to the public as a medicine. It reduces the amount of glucose the liver releases into the bloodstream. It improves a muscles capacity to store and utilise glucose. It delays the absorption of glucose from the intestine (gut). For women with PCOS, metformin stimulates ovulation even if you dont have diabetes (as it lowers insulin and blood sugar levels). Metformin comes as two different types of tablet, an oral solution and oral powder. The two types of tablet are: 1)Standard-release tablets. These release the active substance into your body quickly, so youll have to take them more frequently (usually several times a day, though how much depends on the dose). 2)Slow-release tablets. These dissolve slowly, meaning you dont have to take them as often. Once a day should be enough. The type of metformin you will take depends on your particular situation. Dont fret - your GP will explain why they have prescribed the medication and will give you directions on how to take the medication. Metformin is available as500mg and 850mg tablets; 500mg, 750mg and Continue reading >>

Metformin Drug: The New Fountain Of Youth?

Metformin Drug: The New Fountain Of Youth?

Metformin, a common prescription drug that’s used to treat type 2 diabetes, is making headlines worldwide – but the big news has nothing to do with diabetes. Internet claims and sources boast that metformin may be the key to a longer life – boosting potential life span up to an incredible 120 years. While that sounds too good to be true, the drug seems to have caught the attention of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which just recently approved the first human clinical trials – called Targeting Aging with Metformin, or TAME – to test the use of metformin in people who already have or at who are at risk for cancer, heart disease or cognitive impairment. The goal: to see if the drug can actually help delay the onset of such illnesses and increase longevity. So what gives? Have scientists really stumbled upon the Fountain of Youth? We talked to internal medicine specialist and chief medical officer of Sharecare, Keith Roach, MD, to separate fact from fiction. Sharecare: What’s the background on metformin? Dr. Roach: Metformin’s been around for decades and is one of the most widely used drugs for diabetes. And while it’s very effective for diabetes, for the past 40 or so years, some have also thought that medications in the class of metformin – called biguanides – might have anti-aging properties. Sharecare: What’s behind the anti-aging claim? Dr. Roach: Metformin inhibits a protein called IGF1. This protein is associated with a lot of bad things that happen in the body. And now there’s a fairly large amount of evidence that giving animals – from worms to mice – metformin and drugs like it, tends to decrease some of the changes in the cell that we associate with aging. This in turn may lead to a greater degree of longevity. Sharecare: Metf Continue reading >>

I Took Metformin For A Week And Here's What Happened

I Took Metformin For A Week And Here's What Happened

Craig Cooper Men's Health Leave a comment 0 I admit it: I took metformin for a week, the leading prescribed drug for treatment of type 2 diabetes ( 59.2 million units prescribed ) in the United States alone and taken by 80 million people around the world. This medication has been around for more than half a century and is often touted as a wonder drug for individuals with type 2 diabetes as well as for those living with other health challenges. My reasons for taking metformin were highly personal: I have a genetic predisposition for both prostate cancer and type 2 diabetes (Im not diabetic but I swing in and out of pre-diabetes based on my daily blood sugar readings), and Im getting older (who isnt!). I did copious amounts of research and it seemed on all three counts ( prostate cancer prevention , managing type 2 diabetes (increasing insulin sensitivity), and anti-aging), it truly was a wonder drug. Oh, and I had also read that pretty much every billionaire in Silicon Valley was on it mainly for its purported life extension benefits (as it can mimic the effect of calorie restriction see more below). Before I went on it I wanted to get some key blood indicators taken, specifically: Testosterone (total, free, and bioavailable). The plan was to have these indicators measured before taking metformin and then again, one month later. I really wasnt looking at metformin as a drug I was looking at it more as a superfood. Could it really have all these purported benefits with no real side effects? Why wouldnt I take it? After all, I dont take any other drugs so I had no real risk of the cocktail effect whereby it could have possibly interacted with other medications. However I quickly changed my mind for the reasons set out below, but I wanted to first share with you some of t Continue reading >>

Metformin: It's The First Choice

Metformin: It's The First Choice

It's not new, but metformin is still the top treatment choice for type 2 diabetes. David Nathan, MD, Professor at Harvard Medical School, and Director of the Diabetes Center at Massachusetts General Hospital, shares why metformin remains the best first-line therapy for type 2 diabetes. Dont want to miss the next post in our series on metformin? Subscribe to the blog . Metformin has been the first choice for diabetes treatment for a long time, and its a consensus first choice. Everyone pretty much agrees that it should be the first choice. The reason for that choice is that it really fulfills all of the kind of checkmarks that youd like for a drug for a very common disease. Its effective at lowering hemoglobin A1Cusually by about 1 percent, its very well-tolerated, and its incredibly safe. The final added bonus is that its really, really cheap. Metformins been around for more than five decades and its cost is among the lowest of any prescription drug in the world. The major concerns about metformin in the past have been around the issue of lactic acidosis which is a very severe condition which can lead to mortality, but it is just vanishingly rare with metformin, compared with its predecessor, phenformin, where it was substantially more common. Otherwise, metformin is really well-tolerated. It causes in probably 5 to 10 percent of patients some gastric disturbance, a sense of fullness, sometimes some soft bowel movements, but otherwise its incredibly well-tolerated and very safe. The question with diabetes treatment has really gone from whetherhow you treat people first, which is usually with lifestyle interventiontrying to get people to lose weight, increase their activity levelsand now, more recently, weve advised that people start on metformin very early in the cours Continue reading >>

Metformin And Dppos: 15 Year Results

Metformin And Dppos: 15 Year Results

Does the benefit of metformin for type 2 diabetes prevention persist over time? Kieren Mather, MD, Professor of Medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine, discusses the long-term results of using metformin for diabetes prevention. Thank you, Dr. Mather, for sharing your expertise on metformin and the Diabetes Prevention Program Outcomes Study (DPPOS). To learn more about metformin and diabetes, check out blog posts from other experts in the series. Interested in learning more about metformin? Subscribe to the blog . The long-term results of the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) tell us that the beneficial effect of metformin in terms of preventing or delaying the progression of diabetes persists over the entire 15 years of follow-up, and its looking to persist into the predictable future. In the original publication of the DPP benefit from the first 3.2 yearsthats the way this study worked outwe saw that there was a particular beneficial effect of metformin among younger folks who were more overweight. Then in a subsequent analysis, we found that there was a particularly strong beneficial effect among women who reported a prior history of gestational diabetes before they entered the study. So, that was our expectation as we moved forward was that we would see this persisting benefit, at least in the subgroups. Weve done the analysis now out to 15 years, and we dont see a persisting benefit related to age or related to body mass index, obesity, but we do see a persisting benefit among women who came in with a prior history of gestational diabetes. It may not be widely known, but women who have a history of gestational diabetes have the single highest risk of progressing to overt diabetes, so thats a group who really do warr Continue reading >>

Metformin To The Rescue

Metformin To The Rescue

It's just amazing how all round beneficial pharmaceutical drugs can be -- even better than nature itself. Take Metformin, for example -- the oral anti-diabetic drug. Metformin gets sold under trade names like Glucophage XR, Riomet, Fortamet, Glumetza, Obimet, Dianben, Diabex, and Diaformin. It's the first-choice drug for Type-2 diabetes, particularly for overweight patients. Studies have shown that compared to insulin, Metformin yields a 30 percent improvement in preventing complications of diabetes and mortality. Over the years since its approval by the FDA in 1994, Metformin has been tested for various other applications. Foremost among these has been as a weight-reducing remedy. Basically, Metformin works by increasing insulin sensitivity, which leads to a decrease in appetite. Now, a new study hot off the press shows that Metformin helps obese teens lose weight when combined with exercise and a healthy diet. The study, led by Darrell Wilson, MD, of Stanford University, followed 78 teens aged 13-17 for two years. The subjects all fell within the 95th percentile weight-wise. None of the subjects had diabetes. After almost a year (48 weeks), the teens taking Metformin and following a healthy regimen had a 0.9-point drop in body mass index, compared with only a 0.2-point gain in the control group. Although this sounds impressive, keep in mind that a 0.9 loss equates to about a six or seven pound weight reduction in an average-height teen. While "statistically" significant, it's hardly overwhelming given how fat these kids started out, and considering that they dieted for almost a year to achieve that less than exciting loss. Without the drug, they lost a pound or two, but with it, only a handful more -- hardly enough weight loss to carry them over to the realm of svelte Continue reading >>

Preventing The Side Effects Of Metformin

Preventing The Side Effects Of Metformin

Metformin is an oral medication which is classified as a biguanide. It is most often used for the management of type 2 diabetes when diet and exercise are not adequate in controlling high blood sugar levels. Metformin has an extensive safety record and medical research has proven that the medication is as good or better at controlling blood sugar levels when compared to other oral antidiabetic medication. When regularly taken, it decreases the amounts of glucose produced by the liver so that the body’s blood sugar levels are lowered. This medication also leads to a decrease in glucose absorption from the intestines and increases the body’s sensitivity to insulin so that it can be used more efficiently and effectively. However, as with all good news, there is a caveat. This medication comes with a lot of bothersome side effects which can be hard to manage. But there are many ways to lessen the side effects of Metformin or, in some cases, avoid them altogether so you can benefit from its stabilizing abilities without any unnecessary trouble. Common Side Effects The most common side effects of Metformin are gastrointestinal. Nausea and/or vomiting may occur in around seven to twenty-six percent of patients while diarrhea is usually experienced by fifty-three percent of patients. These gastrointestinal side effects are usually temporary and lessen over a few weeks’ time, eventually going away on their own. Metformin may possibly reduce the absorption of the vitamin B 12. An estimated seven percent of individuals who are undergoing treatment with Metformin experience reduced levels of vitamin B 12. A physician can easily monitor your vitamin levels, keeping a close eye on your B 12 levels, and determine if you might require a B 12 injection. Headaches are experienced a Continue reading >>

Metformin: Patients Share Their Experience

Metformin: Patients Share Their Experience

Metformin, used to treat type 2 diabetes, is one of the most widely-prescribed pharmaceutical drugs across the globe. But what do the people actually taking Metformin think of it? We asked the audience at DiabetesDaily’s Facebook page and here’s what they had to say…. Do you (or have you ever) been prescribed Metformin to help you manage your type 2 diabetes? What was your experience? Side-effects? Benefits? “I am on metformin for the past couple of years. It makes me sick to my stomach.” “Been taking Metformin for 9 months. I’ve had no bad side effects. I’ve lost almost 50 pounds while on it. My doctor is about to take me off of it because I do a good job of controlling my sugar levels with a low carb diet and exercise.” “It worked great for me, no side effects, and lowered my blood sugar.” “On high dose of regular release Metformin, 2000mg/ day down to 750mg/day, had debilitating diarrhea. Could not go anywhere that did not have an available bathroom. Now on 750mg extended release and have normal BMs. But, have to supplement with Glimiperide and Lantus(insulin). Still trying to get my BG levels under control. Last A1C was 8.8.” “I have been taking Metformin for about six years I have not had any side effects my a1c has stayed right around 6.5 the whole time I take 500mg twice a day.” “One word: NIGHTMARE!” “I take 500 mg of Metformin 2x a day and I’m on the insulin pump. I need very little insulin cause the Metformin works so well, and I’ve lost a lot of weight, too.” “Couldn’t tolerate the diarrhea.” “You can avoid gastrointestinal problems by starting with a low dose, like 500 mg for 14 days and then increse the dose. This is evedence based and my experience as a diabetologest. Metformin is a wonder drug.” “I tak Continue reading >>

The Many Faces Of Metformin

The Many Faces Of Metformin

In 2004, Clifford Bailey of the Diabetes Group from Aston University in Birmingham, United Kingdom described metformin, the most widely prescribed drug for treating diabetes, as ironic: In our high-tech era of drug discovery and development this first-line treatment for type 2 diabetes is little removed from an herbal remedy of the Middle Ages. Despite its chemical simplicity and detailed investigation, metformin continues to evade a complete exposé of its cellular activity (Pract Diab Int April 2004 Vol.21 No. 3) Now, almost a decade later, a team led by Morris Birnbaum, M.D., Ph.D. from the Institute for Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism, is getting closer to a clear picture of how this drug works, which, in addition to its widespread use for diabetes, is being tested for treating dementia and cancer. The Birnbaum lab and colleagues found that metformin works in a different way than previously understood. They found that in mice it suppresses the liver hormone glucagon’s ability to generate an important signaling molecule, which points to new drug targets. For fifty years, one of the few classes of therapeutics effective in reducing the overactive glucose production associated with diabetes has been the biguanides, which includes metformin. The inability of insulin to keep liver glucose output in check is a major factor in the high blood sugar of type 2 diabetes and other diseases of insulin resistance. “Overall, metformin lowers blood glucose by decreasing liver production of glucose,” says Birnbaum. “But we didn’t really know how the drug accomplished that.” Birnbaum’s Nature study describes a novel mechanism by which metformin antagonizes the action of glucagon, thus reducing fasting glucose levels. The team showed that metformin leads to the accumula Continue reading >>

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