March 28, 2023

THE RED PILL OR THE BLUE? METFORMIN OR BERBERINE? Which should you take? There’s 1 huge difference between them that could rock your decision.

Metformin and berberine they’ve been used as alternative treatments for diabetes and now they’re being used as alternative treatments by the longevity community and they’re pretty much the same right well they are except for one big difference stay tuned to find out what that is it’s been about a year since i did a video on metformin and that video has been getting

A lot of comments lately so i think it’s time to do an update now there’s a link to that video right up here or in the description now in this video i’m going to compare metformin to berberine and take a look at how well both perform against aging their similarities and the one really big difference between them both metformin and berberine have been around for

A while now and they’ve both been in use for a long time in treating diabetes but their use as a longevity treatment is fairly new and that’s what we’ll be examining even though they may work a bit differently they have a lot of things in common in fact in the aging community berberine is considered to be an alternative to metformin and that’s probably for the same

Reason that it’s considered to be an alternative in treating diabetes like i said in one form or another both metformin and berberine have been around for a long time metformin is derived from a plant called the french lilac and this plant has been used as an herbal remedy for treating excessive urination caused by diabetes since the middle ages metformin the

Drug was first described in 1922 and it was approved by the fda in 1994. berberine on the other hand has been used in chinese medicine since 3000 bce it’s an alkaloid found in the roots and bark of several plants things like european barbary which is where it gets its name but also from the oregon grape golden seal gold thread phallodendron and tree turmeric and i

Want to say right here that both of these molecules need a lot more research particularly as it applies to longevity science there’s been a fair amount for metformin but there’s two particular studies that are going on right now that i’ll be excited to see concluded and find out what the results are the first is the metformin in longevity study or the mild study

Now as i understand it this trial is already completed but the results aren’t out yet at least i haven’t been able to find them the second is the targeting aging with metformin trial also known as the tame trial now this trial hasn’t even launched yet and it’s going to be looking at 3 000 individuals between the ages of 65 and 79 and it’ll take about six years to

Complete but berberine is a sadly underrepresented molecule while there have been a few studies centered around its performance on diabetes there aren’t nearly enough studies looking at how it performs when used as an intervention to defeat aging the same mechanism that makes both of these molecules so effective in treating diabetes is probably why they’re both

So effective in extending health and lifespans metformin controls blood sugar levels in two ways first by reducing the amount of glucose that’s dumped into the bloodstream it does this by both blocking the absorption of carbs in the intestines and by decreasing gluconeogenesis in the liver which is where the liver creates glucose but it also lowers blood sugar

Levels by accelerating the uptake of glucose metformin increases both insulin sensitivity and the absorption of glucose into the muscles metformin also activates an enzyme called ampk which blocks gluconeogenesis and increases insulin sensitivity but it also activates autophagy a process that recycles cellular components and may also play a role in treating or

Preventing cancer studies in 2015 and 2018 suggest that people with diabetes who were taking metformin might have a lower risk of cancer and a better survivability rate than healthy people who were not taking metformin they also have a better overall prognosis for lung pancreatic and breast cancer metformin also reduces triglycerides resulting in a lower risk for

Cardiovascular disease it improves gut health by increasing bacteria that are good at producing short chain fatty acids that can contribute to weight loss and inflammation suppression and it appears to be good at extending health and lifespans it inhibits the mtor pathway and the insulin-like growth factor 1 signaling pathway blocking both of these pathways have

Been indicated in promoting longevity it can also restore youthful methylation it may reduce the amount of damage that accumulates from chronic inflammation and oxidative stress and a study from the veterans administration suggests that it may reduce the incidence of dementia in another study called the trim study researchers tried to regenerate lost thymic tissue

Now they were able to accomplish this but they also reset the epigenetic clocks of the study participants back by two years on average and they did this by using metformin along with human growth hormone and dhea metformin also acts as a calorie restriction mimetic or crmetic it’s been known for a while now that calorie restriction can improve longevity and it

Does this through activation of ampk and autophagy and by suppressing the mtor pathway all these things that metformin does so it’s considered and c are mimetic now let’s compare these attributes of metformin to berberine berberine has long been used as an alternative to taking metformin because metformin can have some very nasty side effects now metformin can

Cause digestive upsets such as diarrhea and nausea but berberine can have those same effects but metformin can also cause lactic acidosis in people with kidney disease which can be fatal it can also inhibit the absorption of vitamin b12 and berberine has neither of these side effects and apparently berberine is just as good as metformin in treating diabetes

Both can reduce glucose levels and control blood sugar both increase glucose consumption by inhibiting complex one of the electron transport chain part of a process known as mitochondrial respiration both are cr mimetics and both activate ampk and suppress mtor both reduce inflammation and both apparently reduce cell division leading to less telomere attrition

But berberine works a bit differently than metformin it’s known for reducing oxidative stress and it does this by activating ampk and an enzyme called p38 activating them both can cause the activation of a cellular protein called nfr2 which regulates the expression of antioxidant and stress response proteins berberine can inhibit inflammation by limiting the

Activity of a couple of pro-inflammatory enzymes called el kappa b kinase and rho gtpase and finally it can lower cholesterol now because it’s so similar to metformin in its actions it should theoretically be just as good as metformin with cancer but there’s just no data to back this up so i guess only time will tell now there are some drawbacks to each first off

You need a prescription to take metformin you can’t just buy it over the counter berberine on the other hand is a supplement not a prescription and it’s available without a prescription just like any other supplement metformin has very good bioavailability and it’s absorbed by the body quite well berberine on the other hand is not it has lousy bioavailability and

It’s not absorbed well at all not only that but about 80 of what is absorbed gets metabolized in the liver where it doesn’t do any good it just gets broken down now finally the primary drawback of berberine in my opinion is there just aren’t nearly enough studies on it we just don’t know enough about berberine now i want to move on to a subject that might be a

Bit controversial it’s pretty well known that both exercise and metformin can benefit longevity and most longevity interventions are additive meaning that the effects of one can be added to the effects of another both exercise and metformin improve levels of fitness blood sugar levels and insulin sensitivity they both boost mitochondrial function both work the

Same pathways and have similar effects so it makes sense to assume that taking metformin with your exercise regime would amplify the effects of both but a study shows that that’s just not the case in fact it looks like exercise and metformin cancel each other out people who are doing both metformin and exercise had about half the gains in fitness of the people

Who were taking a placebo with their exercise they had negligible improvement in insulin sensitivity and finally the people on the placebo had about a 25 rise in mitochondrial respiration while those on metformin saw little if any improvement now like i said this study is controversial it was done on a small group of elderly people who didn’t do any exercise

Previously and it was done over a short period of time everyone took the same dose and they took really high doses around two grams a day so the researchers cautioned that this study doesn’t necessarily mean that you shouldn’t be taking metformin if you’re exercising however there’s some evidence that might show that taking berberine instead of metformin is better

If you’re exercising now there’s this study which was done on a group of sedentary overweight middle-aged men and they found that those who were doing circuit training while taking berberine had larger improvements in triglycerides total cholesterol hdl and ldl cholesterol and nc reactive protein than the guys who were just exercising or just taking berberine and

This study done on diabetic rats showed that taking berberine improved the effects of aerobic exercise as evidenced by higher levels of antioxidant enzymes in the animal’s pancreatic tissues okay for me this is the thing that makes a big difference between taking metformin and berberine i exercise a lot i’m trying to stave off sarcopenia and osteoporosis both

Signs of aging i’m also trying to keep up my mobility and my stamina and endurance if taking metformin might cancel out all the exercise that i do that’s a big deal if berberine doesn’t cancel out my workouts that’s reason enough right there to take berberine instead of metformin but if berberine actually enhances the effects of exercise improving markers for

Aging like c-reactive protein or boosting the effects of aerobic exercise that kind of cinches it for me i looked but i couldn’t find any studies showing that taking berberine cancels out the effects of exercise like there is with metformin but that metformin study is controversial and there’s just not enough studies on berberine so what do you guys think do

You feel that we can trust any of these studies do you know of any studies beyond the ones that i’ve been able to find do you come to similar conclusions or do you have another theory let me know in the comments now one thing’s for sure we really need a lot more research on both metformin and burberry all right let’s wrap this video up by talking about dosing

If you’re taking either metformin or berberine as a longevity drug well there’s not much research to help figure out how much you should take the study on metformin and exercise took 2 grams a day the tame study used a dosage of 1.7 grams the same as the miles study is proposing the trim study used half a gram a day now i’ve heard recommendations of anywhere

Between a half a gram and two grams a day and that you should take metformin either once or twice a day i’ve heard that you should take a similar dose of berberine somewhere between a half a gram and a gram and a half a day however berberine has a pretty short half-life meaning that the body clears it out pretty quickly so you should spread your doses of berberine

Out by taking it three or four times a day i’d like to reiterate here that i’m not a doctor or researcher or a scientist and you should not be taking my opinion as a recommendation consult your physician before taking either metformin or berberine and that wraps up this video watch this playlist for more on metformin i’m outta here catch you guys next week

Transcribed from video
METFORMIN or BERBERINE? The Same? 1 HUGE Difference! [2021] By Lance Hitchings