Clinical trial of Cecropia obtusifolia and Marrubium vulgare leaf extracts on blood glucose and serum lipids in type 2 diabetics

Phytomedicine. 2004 Nov;11(7-8):561-6. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2004.01.006.


Cecropia obtusifolia and Marrubium vulgare have been widely used in Mexican traditional medicine for the control of type 2 diabetes. In order to evaluate the clinical effect produced by the aqueous extract from these species on type 2 non-controlled diabetes mellitus, a total of 43 outpatients were included. Based on the European NIDDM (policy group) criteria, only patients with poor response to the conventional treatment were selected. All patients maintained their medical treatment and also received a prepared infusion of the dry leaves of the plant treatment for 21 days. In a double-blind manner, the patients were randomly grouped as follows: 22 patients were treated with C. obtusifolia and 21 with M. vulgare. The fasting blood glucose values were reduced by 15.25% on patients treated with C. obtusifolia, while cholesterol and triglycerides were decreased by 14.62% and 42.0%, respectively (ANOVA p< 0.02). In the case of patients treated with M. vulgare, the plasma glucose level was reduced by 0.64% and cholesterol and triglycerides by 4.16% and 5.78%, respectively. When the results were compared between groups, significant differences in glucose and cholesterol diminution were found. The obtained results showed that the infusion prepared with the leaves of C. obtusifolia (containing 2.99+/-0.14mg of chlorogenic acid/g of dried plant) produced beneficial effects on carbohydrate and lipid metabolisms when it was administered as an adjunct on patients with type 2 diabetes with poor response to conventional medical treatment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / drug effects*
  • Cecropia Plant / chemistry*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / blood*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / drug therapy*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypercholesterolemia / drug therapy
  • Hypertriglyceridemia / drug therapy
  • Male
  • Marrubium / chemistry*
  • Middle Aged
  • Plant Extracts / administration & dosage
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Plant Leaves / chemistry


  • Blood Glucose
  • Plant Extracts