Objective: It has been proposed that royal jelly has antioxidant properties and may improve oxidative stress and glycemic control. Therefore, we investigated the effects of royal jelly supplementation in diabetic females.
Methods: In this pilot, parallel design randomized clinical trial, 50 female volunteers with type 2 diabetes were randomly allocated to the supplemented (25, cases) and placebo (25, cases) groups, based on random block procedure produced by Random Allocation Software, given a daily dose of 1,000 mg royal jelly soft gel or placebo, respectively, for 8 weeks. Before and after intervention, glycemic control indices, antioxidant and oxidative stress factors were measured.
Results: After royal jelly supplementation, the mean fasting blood glucose decreased remarkably (163.05±42.51 mg/dL vs. 149.68±42.7 mg/dL). Royal jelly supplementation resulted in significant reduction in the mean serum glycosylated hemoglobin levels (8.67%±2.24% vs. 7.05%±1.45%, P=0.001) and significant elevation in the mean insulin concentration (70.28±29.16 pmol/L vs. 86.46±27.50 pmol/L, P=0.01). Supplementation significantly increased erythrocyte superoxidase dismutase and glutathione peroxidase activities and decreased malondialdehyde levels (P<0.05). At the end of study, the mean total antioxidant capacity elevated insignificantly in both groups.
Conclusions: On the basis of our findings, it seems that royal jelly supplementation may be beneficial in controlling diabetes outcomes. Further studies with larger sample size are warranted.