Trigonella foenum graecum / Fenegriek

Monografie uit het cursusboek van herboristenopleiding 'Dodonaeus'
TRIGONELLA FOENUM - GRAECUM

Algemene en botanische informatie
Familie: Fabaceae - Vlinderbloemigen.
Naam: Fenugrec (F.), Greek hay seed (E.), Bockshornklee (D.).
Volksnamen: Grieks hooizaad, Schoonheidszaad.
Etymologie: Het griekse "foenum" (hooi) en "graecum" is verbasterd tot fenegriek. Trigonella komt van "trigonus" (driehoekig) en verwijst naar de bloemvorm.
Herkomst: Waarschijnlijk India en China, maar ook inheems in M-Z gebied.
Beschrijving: Opstaande, aromatische éénjarige met 3-tallige bladeren. De enkele, geelwitte en aan de basis paarsgetinte, bloempjes worden snel gevolgd door lange gesnavelde peulen met geelbruine zaden.
Teelt: Éénjarige, gemakkelijk te zaaien, kiemt op 5 dagen.

Materia Medica
Foenigraeci semen (het zaad van Trigonella foenum-graecum L.)
Oogst: Het rijpe zaad uit culturen in India, Marokko, China en Turkije.
Beschrijving: Harde, 3 tot 5mm lange en 2mm brede zaden met onregelmatige, viervlakkige vorm, door een overlangse sleuf in 2 ongelijke helften verdeeld.
De kleur is bruingeel. De geur van het poeder is kenmerkend scherp aromatisch, wat kerrie-achtig. De smaak is licht samen­trekkend, wat bitter en slijmerig.
Beschreven in OAB als Semen Foenigraeci en in Ph. Helv. VII als Foenigraeci semen ad usum veterinarium.

Samenstelling / Werkzame Bestanddelen
** Slijmstoffen 20 tot 45% galactomannanen (in endosperm, celwandslijm)
** Hoge voedingswaarde: proteïnen 27%, vetten 10% in embryo, lecithine, ijzer- en fosforverbindingen
** Steroidsaponinen tot 2,2% (lit. 1, 2, 3, 11, 12), gaan na hydrolyse over in diosgenine en yamogenine
* Foenugraecine (lit. 10)
* Sterolen: cholesterol en sitosterol
* Flavonoiden: vitexine tot 0,36%
** Trigonelline
* Etherische olie 0,015% met de geurstof 3-hydroxy-4,5-dimethyl-2(5H) furanon

Farmacologie
** Emmolientia: verzachtend, bevordert rijping abcessen, heeft beschermende werking op de huid en slijmvliezen, bindt gifstoffen.
** Roborans: door hoge voedingswaarde, "plantaardig levertraan", zenuwversterkend door o.a. het lecithinegehalte, fosfor.
* Stimulerend: op darm, baarmoeder en hart (positief chronotroop) (lit. 13).
** Aperitivum.
** Bloedsuikerverlagend door zijn slijmstoffen en foenugraecine (lit. 10)
* Cholesterolverlagend (lit. 7, 8, 9). 
* mogelijk teratogeen, niet tijdens zwangerschap gebruiken

Indicatie
Stofwisseling / Maag en darm
** Gebrek aan eetlust, anorexia, anorexia ook amara: Gentiana, Centaurium
** Magerte, asthenie, spierzwakte, aansterkend na ziekte andere versterk­ende kruiden
** Diabetes (lit. 6 en 10)
* Bloedarmoede (ook Urtica)
* Maagpijn, te veel maagzuur

Bloedvaten
* Atherosclerose Allium sativum)
* Lage bloeddruk Rosmarinus officinalis e.a.

Zenuwstelsel
* Zenuwzwakte, neurasthenie Hypericum perforatum, Panax ginseng e.a.
* Amnesie (ook Ginkgo biloba, Rosmarinus officinalis e.a.

Uitwendig / Huid
** Abces, rijping bevorderen ook Lijnzaad, als compres)
** Furunkels, steenpuisten
* Panaritium (uitw.) ook Echinacea inw.)

Als voeding
* In curry met Curcuma en andere specerijen
* Gekiemd zaad, scheuten als groente zoals Alfalfa
* Als veevoeding: vetmesten, melkproductie, tegen snot bij pluimvee

Receptuur
Poeder / pulvis 1 koffielepel met honing 2x daags: asthenie, coup de fouet (Belaiche)
Decoct gemalen zaad (15min., 40g/liter): maagpijn, maagzuur, 1 kop na maaltijd (Belaiche)
Maceraat zaad 3uur, 0,5g 3x daags (Willuhn, Wichtl)
Uitwendig gemalen zaad met water tot pasta: rijping abcessen (Wichtl)
Tinctuur: mac. 100g zaad op 1 liter alcohol 30% gedurende 14 dagen
Naturine: fenegriekpoeder van Bouts als zenuwversterkend middel

Geschiedenis en wetenschappelijk onderzoek
  • In de Oudheid reeds gebruikt, vooral in India, China en Arabische wereld o.a. om mollig te maken, vandaar de naam "schoonheidszaad". 
  • Arabische medici tegen suikerziekte. 
  • Caton den Oude om het vee vet te mesten. 
  • In 8ste of 9de eeuw in Europa ingevoerd door benedictijner monniken. 
  • Hildegard van Bingen 12de eeuw. 
  • Albertus Magnus 13de eeuw vermeldt dat het een aangename kleur aan het gelaat geeft en een frisse geur aan de adem. 
  • Dioscorides: "voor allerhande gezwellen" (fenegriekmeel met honingwater tot pap), 
  • "voor een verharde milt" (fenegriekmeel met salpeter en azijn op linkerzij), 
  • "voor zweeringe en hardigheid van de lijf moeder". 
  • Ravelingius: "Om alderhande zweren te doen rijpen" (het zaad 15 dagen laten weken in wijn en olie). 
  • In de 20ste eeuw bevestigen Blum, Huerre en Leclerc de werking op stofwisseling. 
  • R. Mignot bestudeerde uitgebreid fenegriek: "... se manifeste par Ie reveil de l'appétit, l'arret de ramaigrissement, Ie retour des forces: il rend les mêmes services que l'huile de morue." (Le Fenugrec. Presse medicale 25 maart 1931) 
  • Prof. Loeper en A. Lemaire schrijven de werking toe aan zijn hoge voed­ingswaarde (kalk-fosforverbindingen, lecithine) en zijn steroidverbindingen. 
  • Prof. Bouts: "Na heel wat proefnemingen zijn wij tot de slotsom gekomen dat het zaad van fenegriek het beste algemene herstelmiddel vormt. Het geeft het organisme massieve dosissen fosfor-kalkcomposities en zelfs de uitsluitend voor de hersencellen bestemde fosfor en lecithine in zeer verteer­bare vorm. Het stimuleert het assimilatievermogen van het organisme." 
Referenties

R.K. Gupta e.a. Phytochemistry 23, 2695, 1984: onderzoek steroidsaponinen in fenegriek.
R.K. Gupta e.a. Phytochemistry 24, 2399, 1985: onderzoek steroidsaponinen in fenegriek.
R.K. Gupta e.a. Phytochemistry 25, 22O5, 1986: onderzoek steroidsaponinen in fenegriek.
P. Girardou e.a. Planta medica 51, 533, 1985: onderzoek etherische olie in fenegriek.
l.A. Ala Meshal e.a. Fitoterapia 56, 236, 1985: extract tegen maagzweren bij ratten.
G. Ribes e.a. Ann. Nutr. Metab. 28, 37, 1984: antidiabetische werking bij honden.
G. Valette e.a. Atherosclerosis 5O, 1O5, 1984: onderzoeken naar de cholesterolverlagende werk­ing van fenegriek.
P.C. Singhal e.a. Indian Curr. Sci. 51, 136, 1982: onderzoeken naar de cholesterolverlagende werking
R.D. Sharma. Nutr. Rep. Int. 33, 669, 1986; C.A.104, 2O6O54, 1986: onderzoeken naar de cho­lesterol verlagende werking
S. Ghosal. Phytochemistry 13, 2247, 1974: bloedsuikerverlagende werking foenugraecin.
S.K. Bhattacharya e.a. Rheumatism 6, 1, 1971.
R. Tessche e.a. 2. Naturforsch. 2Ob, 5443, 1965: steroidsaponinen antiflogistisch.
M.S. Abdo e.a. Planta medica 17, 14, 1969.

Verder onderzoek

Ajabnoor, M.A. and Tilmisany, A.K. (1988). Effect of Trigonella foenum graecum on blood glucose levels in normal and alloxandiabetic mice. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 22, 45-49.
Al-Habori, M. and Raman, A. (1998). Antidiabetic and hypocholesterolemic effects of fenugreek [Review]. Phytotherapy Research. 12, 233-242.
Al-Habori, M., Al-Aghbari, A.M., and Al-Mamary, M. (1998). Effects of fenugreek seeds and its extracts on plasma lipid profile: A study on rabbits. Phytotherapy Research. 12, 572-575.
Ali, L., Azad Khan, A.K., Hassan, Z., Mosihuzzaman, M., Nahar, N., Nur-e-Alam, M., and Rokeya, B. (1995). Characterization of the hypoglycemic effects of Trigonella foenum graecum seed. Planta Medica. 61, 358-360.
Bordia, A., Verma, S.K., and Srivastava, K.C. (1997). Effects of ginger and fenugreek on blood lipids, blood sugar and platelet aggregation in patients with coronary artery disease. Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes and Essential Fatty Acids. 56, 379-384.
Khosla, P., Gupta, D.D., and Nagpal, R.K. (1995). Effect of Trigonella foenum graecum (Fenugreek) on blood glucose in normal and diabetic rats. Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology. 39, 173-174.
Madar, Z., Abel, R., Samish, S., and Arad, J. (1988). Glucose-lowering effect of fenugreek in non-insulin dependent diabetics. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 42, 51-54.
Petit, P.R., Sauvaire, Y.D., Hilaire-Buys, D.M., Leconte, O.M., Baissac, Y.G., Ponsin, G.R., and Ribes, G.R. (1995). Steroid saponins from fenugreek seeds: extraction, purification, and pharmacological investigation on feeding behavior and plasma cholesterol. Steroids. 60, 674-680.
Ribes, G., Sauvaire, Y., Da Costa, C., Baccou, J.C., and Loubatieres-Mariani, M.M. (1986). Antidiabetic effects of subfractions from fenugreek seeds in diabetic dogs. Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine. 182, 159-166.
Sauvaire, Y., Ribes, G., Baccou, J.C., and Loubatieres-Mariani, M.M. (1991). Implications of steroid saponins and sapogenins in the hypocholesterolemic effect of fenugreek. Lipids. 26, 191-197.
Sharma, R.D., Raghuram, T.C., and Rao, N.S. (1990). Effect of fenugreek seeds on blood glucose and serum lipids in Type I diabetes. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 44, 301-306.
Stark, A. and Madar, Z. (1993). The effect of an ethanol extract derived from fenugreek (Trigonella foenum graecum) on bile acid absorption and cholesterol levels in rats. British Journal of Nutrition. 69, 277-287.
Valette, G., Sauvaire, Y., Baccou, J.C., and Ribes, G. (1984). Hypocholesterolemic effect of fenugreek seeds in dogs. Atherosclerosis. 50, 105-111.

Algemene literatuur
  • P. Bouts. Ik ben nooit moe. Uitgeverij De Vlijt 1973. 
  • L. Kordel. Oma's gezondheidsgids. Uitgeverij Tiebosch 1 98O. 
  • M. Wichtl. Teedrogen. Wissenschaftliche Verlagsgesellschaft mbH 1989. 


How It Works volgens Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Bottom Line: Fenugreek may lower blood glucose and cholesterol levels in people with diabetes.
Much research on fenugreek has been conducted in India and other countries, focusing on its potential for the treatment of
diabetes. In healthy and diabetic animals and humans, fenugreek lowers cholesterol, blood triglyceride levels, and blood
glucose levels. Scientists are not certain how this effect happens, but propose that the fiber in fenugreek binds to glucose
and cholesterol in the digestive tract and prevents it from being absorbed by the body, or increases insulin secretion.
Laboratory studies in rats show that fenugreek normalizes their blood levels of antioxidants and metabolic enzymes, but it is
unclear whether this effect occurs in humans. Fenugreek has anticancer properties but human studies are needed.
Fenugreek acts as an estrogenic receptor modulator and was shown to stimulate breast cancer cells in vitro.Patients with
hormonal-sensitive cancers should avoid this product.

Purported Uses
  • To treat cancer: Laboratory and animal studies show that fenugreek has anticancer properties. Human studies are needed.
  • To treat diabetes: Several animal studies and a few clinical trials show that fenugreek can lower blood glucose levels when taken withmeals. However, more research is needed to support its use as a replacement for diabetes medications.
  • As a laxative No clinical trials have studied this use, but fenugreek seeds do contain high levels of fiber.
  • To treat disorders of the digestive tract. No scientific evidence supports this use. Fenugreek seeds contain high levels of fiber.
  • To lower high cholesterol. Several animal studies and a few clinical trials support this use.
  • To induce childbirth. Although laboratory studies show that fenugreek stimulates contraction of the uterus, human data are lacking.
  • To fight infections. Fenugreek shows antibacterial properties in laboratory experiments, but it has not been studied in humans.
  • To reduce inflammation. No scientific evidence supports this use.
  • As a lactation stimulant. Although fenugreek is often used to stimulate lactation in folk medicine, there are no data to back this claim.
  • For wound healing. Fenugreek shows antibacterial properties in laboratory experiments, but there is no scientific evidence supports this use.
Research Evidence
Laboratory and animal studies suggest benefits of fenugreek. Preliminary evidence indicates its effectiveness against
diabetes in humans; however, large randomized clinical trials have not been conducted.

Do Not Take If
You are taking warfarin (fenugreek can increase the risk of bleeding).
You are taking cyclophosphamide (fenugreek may interfere with the actions of cyclophosphamide).
You have hormone-sensitive cancer (fenugreek acts as an estrogenic receptor modulator and was shown to
increase growth of breast cancer cells in vitro).

Side Effects
Allergic reactions including rhinorrhea, wheezing, numbness of head, facial angioedema and fainting were reported
following inhalation and external application of fenugreek seed powder.
Fenugreek seed extract caused developmental abnormalities in mice, but this has not been shown in humans.



Cracht ende werckinghe vlgs Dodonaeus 1554

A   Dwater daer Fenigrieck saet in ghesoden es met wat huenichs ghedroncken iaecht af alle quade humueren die aen die dermen hanghen.
B   Tselve sap met daden ierst ghesoden ende daer naer met wat huenichs tot dat ghelijck een syrope wordde suyvert seer die borst ende es goet den ghenen die op die borste verladen sijn ende gheene pijne in thooft oft cortsen en hebben/ want den ghenen die cortsachtich sijn oft pijne in thooft hebben en dient dese Syrope niet.
C   Tmeel van Fenigrieck saet met Meede ghesoden verteert/ versuet/ scheydt ende doet sincken die coude herde apostumatien ende geswillen. Ende als daer salpeeter ende azijn toe ghedaen wordt zoo minderet oock ende maeckt woruw die herde geswollen milte.
D   Dwater daer Fenigrieck in ghesoden es/ es goet den vrouwen die in die moeder eenighe apostumatien oft sweerenissen oft verstoptheyt hebben als sy daer in baden ende sitten.
E   Tselve sap met gansen smout vermenght ende met een pessus van onder gheset versuet ende vermorwt alle herdicheyt ende pijne ontrent dat slot van die moedere.
F   Tselve sap van Fenigrieck gheneest oock die quade loopende scorfticheyt van den hoofde/ ende die scelferen ende scellen van den selven alst hooft daer mede ghewasschen wordt.
G   Tselve sap van Fenigrieck met solfer ende huenich vermenght verdrijft die masen ende plecken uut dat aensicht ende gheneest alle quaede ruydicheyt daer op ghestreken/ ende doet vergaen die stanck van den oockselen als zy daer mede ghewasschen worden.
H   Die bladeren ende cruyt van Fenigrieck gruen ghestooten ende met luttel azijns vermenght sijn goet op weecke versworen leden gheleyt.
I   Tsaet van Fenigrieck mach oock voor spijse in ghenomen worden ghelijck die Lupinen bereyt/ ende es van wercke den Lupinen ghelijck/ ende doet oock lichtelicker camerganck hebben.
K   Die ionghe spruytkens ende bladeren worden oock seyt Galenus met olie ende azijn voor salaet gheten/ maer alsulcken spijse en es niet ghesont/ want sy beruert die maghe ende maeckt hooftsweer als zy te veel inghenomen wordt.



Fenugreek is a common spice, particularly in India and places that ingest curries. It was discovered to have medicinal qualities thousands of years ago by Ayuravedic practitioners who reported it to be useful for many things including management of metabolic and nutritive disorders such as diabetes. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the spice is known as a phlegm mover, and it is said to break up stuck energies and cool inflammation. In modern times, complementary and alternative physicians and veterinarians have long used this spice as a tool for a wide variety of human and veterinary conditions. Modern medical research is just beginning to explore this realm and has not developed sufficient studies to recommend its use.

Integrative veterinarians and physicians look for scientific support of agents that they choose to use in their practices. We want to know how an agent works, what toxicities may be present and if there are interactions which need to be considered. As pioneering alternative and traditional healers discover potential uses for things, integrative doctors seek out this ancient wisdom and work to better understand and use such materials safely and effectively. In this process we see true science at work as someone observes a phenomenon, uses it to help others, teaches others about their findings, and this activity attracts the interest of investigators who further delineate the proper uses for that agent.
It was for this purpose that the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association formed just 25 years ago. We have come far since that first group of holistically inclined veterinarians sat down in a smoky Las Vegas lounge and lamented that there was nothing at the present veterinary continuing education meeting on subjects near and dear to their hearts like acupuncture, herbal medicine and homeopathy. Now we have integrative veterinary programs in an ever increasing number of professional schools and major meetings in the U.S., and because of this work I can write a blog like this one.

So what does medical scientific research tell us about fenugreek?
Fenugreek has antioxidative effects. This means that the spice helps prevent and reduce damage from oxidative processes that happen as we live. Our bodies depend upon oxidation to get the energy that powers our activities, but too much oxidation and we get disease and premature aging. Many toxins work by increasing oxidative damage in the body. Eating a proper diet helps reduce oxidation and inclusion of spices like fenugreek can help.

Runaway oxidation can lead to inflammation. Research shows that fenugreek decreases inflammation.
Inflammation is related to the development of chronic diseases like diabetes and cancer. Asthma is an inflammatory allergic condition of the airways and we saw a marked change in Wizard's condition after we added this to his program. Fenugreek is best researched for its usefulness in lowering blood sugar in diabetic humans and rats where it has been shown to perform nicely. In addition to lowering blood sugar, this handy little spice also reduces LDL and cholesterol levels in humans. That means that proper use of a normal food might even reduce the risk of heart disease. How neat is that?

Another study showed that fenugreek seeds protect against the development of cataracts. This study was done in a lab with test tubes (in vitro) and so we don't know if this applies in live animals (in vivo) at this time.
Fenugreek is useful in managing cancer patients. In our clinic we find it does what the Chinese said, and we use it as a phlegm mover. In chronic lung diseases we see the mucus thin, the cough become more productive and breathing improve. With the benefits of science we can see how that anti-inflammatory effect would assist, but if we understand Chinese medicine then we know that cancer is considered to be a phlegm condition as well. In fact we recently used this spice in a dog with advanced spread of cancer in his lungs. The dog felt better almost immediately. It reduces cumulative urotoxicity of some chemotherapy agents and protects the kidney. Research shows that it has liver protective effects similar to another well researched herbal agent (milk thistle). Much to researcher's surprise, an extract of fenugreek was found to be useful in both prevention and treatment of cancer. It may be beneficial in preventing human breast cancer, too.

Pain is a major interest to medicine and research demonstrates clear benefits to use of fenugreek. As an anti-inflammatory we would expect pain to reduce as healing reduces pain, but in addition to this science documents significant analgesic effects. In Chinese medicine, inflammation is known as Heat, and pain comes when Qi stagnates. The Chinese lacked our understanding of cellular events, but they clearly observed the use of this herbal many years before we even had microscopes. Since the analgesic effects were shown against thermal and chemical injuries, this gives us a nice supportive agent for use in such cases.

Rejuvenation medicine is a hot subject. It is exciting to have things that block aging, reverse disease conditions and make us feel better for longer periods of time. Fenugreek has been shown to assist with memory loss through its inhibition of acetyl cholinesterase. It also seems to increase endurance in athletes. Scientists were amazed to discover that ingestion of fenugreek seeds increased the release of growth hormone from research rats. This is perhaps yet another way these commonly ingested spice helps keep people and pets healthier.

Fenugreek extracts may also support patients with Helicobacter related gastric ulcers and chronic fungal issues. It also has been demonstrated to be of use in kidney stones in rats.
While this isn't a particularly common issue for dogs and cats in my practice, this herbal spice has also been demonstrated to increase libido and lower desire for fatty foods, a characteristic that makes it a highly interesting substance for aging human males.

Toxicology research indicates that fenugreek is a safe compound for ingestion except in patients allergic to the spice. Sensitive patients can get skin or mucosal irritation and other gastrointestinal signs. Toxic effects have been demonstrated on developing fetuses at high levels of exposure and because of this it is advisable to use it with caution in reproductively active females. At normal dietary levels it appears safe, but we lack species-specific research. In a genotoxicity study, there was no problem demonstrated. As with all forms of healing, please consult with your veterinarian or physician before starting any treatment.

Humankind has a rich history of living with our environment and learning by various means how to best use the riches that Nature gives us. Complementary and alternative medicine and Integrative medicine are now working with scientists to understand and speed the flow of medical knowledge. Veterinarians can benefit from obtaining information in the medical literature and at continuing education meetings. Informed clients can help us in that process. Now the challenge is for all of us to learn how best to exchange and use this knowledge to help our fellow Beings live better, healthier lives.

Selected References:
  • Steels E, Rao A, Vitetta L. Physiological Aspects of Male Libido Enhanced by Standardized Trigonella foenum-graecum Extract and Mineral Formulation. Phytother Res. 2011 Feb 10. doi: 10.1002/ptr.3360.
  • Tripathi UN, Chandra D. Anti-hyperglycemic and anti-oxidative effect of aqueous extract of Momordica charantia pulp and Trigonella foenum graecum seed in alloxan-induced diabetic rats. Indian J Biochem Biophys. 2010 Aug;47(4):227-33.
  • Moorthy R, Prabhu KM, Murthy PS. Anti-hyperglycemic compound (GII) from fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum Linn.) seeds, its purification and effect in diabetes mellitus. Indian J Exp Biol. 2010 Nov;48(11):1111-8.
  • Kawabata T, Cui MY, Hasegawa T, Takano F, Ohta T. Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Melanogenic Steroidal Saponin Glycosides from Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum L.) Seeds. Planta Med. 2010 Oct 26.
  • Hasani-Ranjbar S, Nayebi N, Moradi L, Mehri A, Larijani B, Abdollahi M. The efficacy and safety of herbal medicines used in the treatment of hyperlipidemia; a systematic review. Curr Pharm Des. 2010;16(26):2935-47.
  • Khalki L, M'hamed SB, Bennis M, Chait A, Sokar Z. Evaluation of the developmental toxicity of the aqueous extract from Trigonella foenum-graecum (L.) in mice. J Ethnopharmacol. 2010 Sep 15;131(2):321-5.
  • Sushma N, Devasena T. Aqueous extract of Trigonella foenum graecum (fenugreek) prevents cypermethrin-induced hepatotoxicity and nephrotoxicity. Hum Exp Toxicol. 2010 Apr;29(4):311-9.
  • Belguith-Hadriche O, Bouaziz M, Jamoussi K, El Feki A, Sayadi S, Makni-Ayedi F. Lipid-lowering and antioxidant effects of an ethyl acetate extract of fenugreek seeds in high-cholesterol-fed rats. J Agric Food Chem. 2010 Feb 24;58(4):2116-22.
  • Chevassus H, Gaillard JB, Farret A, Costa F, Gabillaud I, Mas E, Dupuy AM, Michel F, Cantié C, Renard E, Galtier F, Petit P. A fenugreek seed extract selectively reduces spontaneous fat intake in overweight subjects. Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2010 May;66(5):449-55.
  • Yadav M, Lavania A, Tomar R, Prasad GB, Jain S, Yadav H. Complementary and comparative study on hypoglycemic and antihyperglycemic activity of various extracts of Eugenia jambolana seed, Momordica charantia fruits, Gymnema sylvestre, and Trigonella foenum graecum seeds in rats. Appl Biochem Biotechnol. 2010 Apr;160(8):2388-400.
  • Gupta SK, Kalaiselvan V, Srivastava S, Saxena R, Agrawal SS. Trigonella foenum-graecum (Fenugreek) protects against selenite-induced oxidative stress in experimental cataractogenesis. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2010 Sep;136(3):258-68.
  • Satheeshkumar N, Mukherjee PK, Bhadra S, Saha BP. Acetylcholinesterase enzyme inhibitory potential of standardized extract of Trigonella foenum graecum L and its constituents. Phytomedicine. 2010 Mar;17(3-4):292-5.
  • Haouala R, Hawala S, El-Ayeb A, Khanfir R, Boughanmi N. Aqueous and organic extracts of Trigonella foenum-graecum L. inhibit the mycelia growth of fungi. J Environ Sci (China). 2008;20(12):1453-7.
  • Vyas S, Agrawal RP, Solanki P, Trivedi P. Analgesic and anti-inflammatory activities of Trigonella foenum-graecum (seed) extract. Acta Pol Pharm. 2008 Jul-Aug;65(4):473-6.
  • Ulbricht C, Basch E, Burke D, Cheung L, Ernst E, Giese N, Foppa I, Hammerness P, Hashmi S, Kuo G, Miranda M, Mukherjee S, Smith M, Sollars D, Tanguay-Colucci S, Vijayan N, Weissner W. Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum L. Leguminosae): an evidence-based systematic review by the natural standard research collaboration. J Herb Pharmacother. 2007;7(3-4):143-77.
  • Laroubi A, Touhami M, Farouk L, Zrara I, Aboufatima R, Benharref A, Chait A. Prophylaxis effect of Trigonella foenum graecum L. seeds on renal stone formation in rats. Phytother Res. 2007 Oct;21(10):921-5.
  • Bhatia K, Kaur M, Atif F, Ali M, Rehman H, Rahman S, Raisuddin S. Aqueous extract of Trigonella foenum-graecum L. ameliorates additive urotoxicity of buthionine sulfoximine and cyclophosphamide in mice. Food Chem Toxicol. 2006 Oct;44(10):1744-50.
  • Amin A, Alkaabi A, Al-Falasi S, Daoud SA. Chemopreventive activities of Trigonella foenum graecum (Fenugreek) against breast cancer. Cell Biol Int. 2005 Aug;29(8):687-94.


Fenegriekzaad als adjuvans voor L-dopa bij Parkinson?
Artsen verbonden aan het Shushrusha ziekenhuis in Mumbai publiceerden samen met onderzoekers van Indus Biotech Private Ltd. een door de laatste gesponsorde studie naar de gecombineerde inzet van L-dopa en een op trigonelline gestandaardiseerd hydro-alcoholisch extract van Trigonella foenum-graecum (IBHB) (300 mg per dag) bij Parkinson-patiënten die gestabiliseerd waren op L-dopa met carbidopa (van dit medicijn werd de dosering niet vermeld). Doel van dit onderzoek was te kijken of deze voedingsaanvulling iets zou kunnen betekenen voor het probleem van de verminderde responsop L-dopa die patiënten in de loop der tijd vaak laten zien. Van het betreffende extract werden eerder al anti-oxidatieve en ontstekingsremmende eigenschappen beschreven. Daarnaast hadden eerdere in vitro studies laten zien dat trigonelline (een alkaloïd en metaboliet van nicotinezuur in fenegriek en koffie aanwezig) de uitgroei van humane neuroblastomen bevordert. Ook bij door tetrahydropyridine veroorzaakte neurodegeneratie bij ratten (diermodel voor de ziekte van Parkinson) leek trigonelline tegen de zenuwaantasting te beschermen: de motorische functies van de ratten verbeterden.

Voor deze klinische studie werden 50 deelnemers van gemiddeld 61 jaar gerandomiseerd toegewezen aan twee groepen (placebo en IBHB-extract). Van de 25 deelnemers bleven er in de placebogroep 19 over en in de IBHB-groep 23, in beide groepen merendeels mannen. De belangrijkste uitkomstmaat was de score op de Unified Parkinson Disease Rating Scale (UDPRS),die is onderverdeeld in drie vragenlijsten, één voor het mentale deel (stemming en cognitieve functies), één over de activiteiten in het dagelijks leven en één deel betreft de uitkomst van onderzoek naar de motorische functies. Secundaire uitkomstmaat was het bepalen van het Hoehn en Yahr (H&Y) stadium.
De verschillen tussen placebo en IBHB-extract die na zes maanden werden vastgesteld, waren niet statistisch significant, alhoewel er wel een trend was in het voordeel van de IBHB-groep. De verschillen in achteruitgang bleken na zes maanden klinisch relevant te zijn voor de totale score van de UPDRS en voor het motorische deel van de UPDRS (niet voor de andere twee delen). Het verschil met de placebogroep was volgens de classificatie van Shulman (clinically important difference) ‘matig’ voor de totaalscore en ‘minimaal’ voor de motorscore. In die zin heeft deze studie niet veel opgeleverd. Mogelijk was de studieduur te kort om duidelijke verschillen aan te kunnen tonen bij stabiele Parkinson-patiënten. De veiligheid van het gebruikte extract kwam naar voren uit de maandelijks gemeten hematologische en biochemische parameters. De conclusie van de auteurs dat dit extract een zinvol adjuvans is, lijkt wat voorbarig. Het thema, de combinatie van reguliere medicatie en voedingssuppletie, is echter interessant en zou vaker opgepakt kunnen worden. 
 
Bron:
Nathan J, Panjwani S, Mohan V, Joshi V, Thakurdesia PA. Efficacy and safety of standardised extract of Trigonella foenum-graeccum L seeds as an adjuvant to L-dopa in the management of patients with Parkinson's Disease. Phytother Res2013;doi:10.1002/ptr.4969.


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