Colloidal Silver and Diabetes – a Closer Look
Is colloidal silver a reliable natural remedy for Type II diabetes? Or will it at least help with diabetic symptoms?
Unfortunately, to the best of my knowledge, no clinical studies using human subjects with diabetes have ever been conducted in order to determine whether or not colloidal silver can be considered an effective natural remedy for diabetes.
But, I’ve discovered five preliminary laboratory “test tube” clinical studies in which researchers claim to have abundantly demonstrated the veracity of the theory that silver nanoparticles (i.e., the very smallest of colloidal silver particles) exhibit profound anti-diabetic activity.
What’s more, there are some equally interesting clinical studies regarding the use of silver nanoparticles for certain common health problems that commonly afflict diabetics, such as diabetic foot and leg ulcers, Candida yeast infections, blood clotting and more.
Finally, there are a number of fascinating anecdotal accounts (i.e., testimonials) for the use of colloidal silver against some of the most deleterious effects of diabetes, as well.
Here’s what I’ve discovered so far about the growing scientific knowledge of silver’s remarkable anti-diabetic properties…
5 Clinical “Test Tube” Studies on Colloidal Silver and Diabetes
In this first clinical study, researchers used a plant extract to synthesize silver nanoparticles. They then tested those silver nanoparticles on human blood saturated with glucose, in order to test for glucose uptake into the blood cells, as well as to test for inhibition of the activity of certain enzymes associated with releasing glucose into the bloodstream through carbohydrate digestion.
The study, which was titled “Green Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles Using Tephrosia tinctoria and its Antidiabetic Activity,” was published in the journal Material Letters, Volume 138, in January 2015. The researchers wrote:
“The antidiabetic ability of the silver nanoparticles was tested and the results showed significant free radical scavenging ability, inhibition of carbohydrate digestive enzymes (a-Glucosidase and a-Amylase) and enhancement of Glucose uptake rate.”
In other words, it appears the silver nanoparticles mopped up free radicals (which are often generated in excessive numbers in diabetic patients and which can damage the pancreas), inhibited the activity of enzymes that tend to increase blood sugar levels through the digestion of carbohydrates, and aided in glucose uptake – all critically important factors for diabetics.
A Second Study
In the second study, titled “Antidiabetic Activity of Silver Nanoparticles from Green Synthesis Using Lonicera japonica Leaf Extract,” published in 2016 in the journal of the Royal Society of Chemistry Advances, researchers used another type of plant extract to synthesize silver nanoparticles.
They then conducted chemical tests using standard laboratory processes to determine whether or not the silver nanoparticles would effectively inhibit the key enzymes known, in diabetics, for releasing excess glucose into the bloodstream. The researchers concluded:
“The antidiabetic ability of silver nanoparticles (AgNps) was shown by the effective inhibition against carbohydrate digestive enzymes such as α-amylase and α-glucosidase…According to numerous in vivo studies, the inhibition of a-amylase and a-glucosidase is believed to be one of the most effective approaches for diabetes care.
…the results suggest that the AgNPs were found to show remarkable potential antidiabetic activity against the key enzymes of diabetes and were found to be an appropriate nanomedicine for nanobiomedical applications…
…Based on this result, it is suggested that the AgNPs should be used as nano antidiabetic drugs.”
A Third Study
In a third study, titled “Biogenic Silver Nanoparticles by Halymenia Poryphyroides and its In Vitro Anti-Diabetic Efficacy,” published in 2013 in the Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research, researchers once again synthesized silver nanoparticles using a plant extract, and then tested to determine whether or not those silver particles could inhibit the activity of the carbohydrate-digesting enzymes known in diabetics to release excessive glucose into the bloodstream.
The researchers concluded that the silver nanoparticles exhibited better anti-diabetic activity than the popular anti-diabetic drug Acarbose. Here’s what they wrote:
“The present findings suggest that biosynthesized silver nanoparticles from H.poryphyroides effectively inhibit both α-amylase and α-glucosidase enzymes in vitro in a dose-dependent manner which paves a way for the in vivo studies further.
The synthesized silver nanoparticles proved to exhibit better antidiabetic efficacy against standard Acarbose. Therefore, green synthesis methods of silver nanoparticles are a good source of all these inhibitors and leading a pathway for further use of silver nanoparticles for pharmacological activities.”
A Fourth Study
Yet a fourth clinical study, published in 2018 in the Journal of Microbiology, Biotechnology and Food Sciences, was titled “Antidiabetic Effect of Silver Nanoparticles Synthesized Using Lemongrass (Cymbopogon Citratus) Through Conventional Heating and Microwave Irradiation Approach.”
In this study, researchers once again tested the idea that silver nanoparticles have demonstrable anti-diabetic properties. After conducting their research, they, too, concluded that silver nanoparticles are a potential candidate for being used as an anti-diabetes drug:
“Biosynthesized silver nanoparticle did not allow the escape of glucose into the external solution (by maybe binding or absorbing it) and thus can act as a potential drug candidate for the treatment of non-insulin dependent diabetes.
[The] synthesized nanoparticles proved to have anti-diabetic activity clearly demonstrated by the results.
Thus, this green approach of silver nanoparticle synthesis through microwave irradiated heating can be a fast, economical, ecofriendly approach and the synthesized silver nanoparticle can prove to be a potential anti-diabetic drug candidate.”
And Yet a Fifth Study
In yet a fifth study, published in 2017 in the journal Artificial Cells, Nanomedicine, and Biotechnology, and titled “Exploiting Antidiabetic Activity of Silver Nanoparticles Synthesized Using Punica Granatum Leaves and Anticancer Potential Against Human Liver Cancer Cells (Hepg2),” researchers also demonstrated that silver nanoparticles “exhibited effective inhibition against α-amylase and α-glucosidase,” the two enzymes known to release excessive glucose into the bloodstream in diabetic patients.
Interestingly, this same study also demonstrated that silver nanoparticles are effective against human liver cancer cells. For the sake of space, I won’t go into that topic, in this article. But if silver’s anti-cancer qualities are of interest to you, you can read more about them in my latest book, Colloidal Silver & Cancer: a Surprising Look (192 pages, Life & Health Research Group).
The researchers involved in the above study concluded, regarding the anti-diabetic activity of silver nanoparticles:
“Diabetes mellitus is a group of metabolic diseases in which there are high blood sugar levels over a prolonged period.
A therapeutic approach to decrease the hyperglycemia [excess blood sugar – ED] is to inhibit the carbohydrate digesting enzymes (α-glucosidase and α-amylase), thereby preventing the breakdown of carbohydrates into monosaccharides which is a main cause of increasing blood glucose level.
As shown…α-amylase and α-glucosidase were significantly inhibited in a dose-dependent manner by the synthesized silver nanoparticles.
…The synthesized AgNPs showed significant antioxidant and antidiabetic activities, suggesting metal NPs as useful applications in the field of biomedical research.”
So, once again, for the fifth time, silver nanoparticles have been demonstrated by science to inhibit the activity of the specific enzymes related to excessively high levels of sugar in the blood. (This is also how the prescription anti-diabetes drug, Acarbose, works.)
What’s more, as in several of the previous studies discussed above, the silver nanoparticles exhibited “significant antioxidant activity,” meaning they helped mop up potentially damaging free radicals created during the diabetic disease process.
You’ve likely noticed that, in all five studies described above, the silver nanoparticles being used were manufactured using so-called “green synthesis.”
This simply means that rather than using electricity or harsh chemicals to manufacture the silver nanoparticles, natural plant extracts were used, instead. Researchers are constantly using different processes to manufacture silver nanoparticles, because, while they can’t patent silver itself (because it’s a natural substance), they can patent the process used to turn the silver into tiny nanoparticles.
Important Note: As promising as those five clinical laboratory studies described above might sound, it’s crucial to understand that diabetics should never attempt to substitute colloidal silver for conventional medical treatment, since failure to take prescribed diabetic medication could potentially result in death.
So, if you want to try colloidal silver as a nutritional adjunct for this condition, please do so only under the direct care and guidance of your diabetes specialist or a natural health doctor specifically trained and experienced in the holistic treatment of diabetes.
Anecdotal Accounts from Colloidal Silver Users with Diabetes
I’ve seen some interesting anecdotal accounts regarding the use of colloidal silver by diabetics. For example, here’s an anecdotal account I found on the Rapha Labs web site from someone who says colloidal silver helped stabilize his blood sugar levels:
“I am also diabetic and after taking the Colloidal Silver my blood sugar level is now much more stable. It would shoot up to 16-17 but now it is 6.5 -7. The only thing that I’ve taken is the colloidal silver, so I know it does the job for me.”
Here’s another interesting anecdotal account from the Marpe Products web site:
“It was actually two diabetic friends who were instrumental in me becoming involved with colloidal silver. One diabetic friend had a leg amputated and was told the other was also close to needing amputation, but she made a change to a raw foods diet and began to take colloidal silver.
In only a few days her body began to respond and she was able to save her leg, she believes that if she would have known about the raw foods diet and colloidal silver she may well now have two healthy legs!
Another friend who is a nurse was diagnosed with diabetes and she immediately began taking the colloidal silver. When she went back to see her doctor three weeks later, her doctor said there had been a misdiagnosis and she had no sign of diabetes.
These are two friends who shared experiences with me and caused me to look very seriously into the benefits of colloidal silver and raw foods diet.
I can very confidently say that it would be a miracle if the colloidal silver and raw food diet DID NOT WORK! They work extremely well together and I am amazed that more people don’t know about this!“
A Warning Against Using Colloidal Silver for Diabetes?
On the other hand, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center advises consumers against the use of colloidal silver for diabetes and other serious conditions, solemnly warning that, “Although no human clinical data support the use of oral colloidal silver, it is being promoted as a cure for AIDS, cancer, and diabetes.”
Of course, Memorial Sloan-Kettering has nothing good to say about the use of colloidal silver for any purpose. So, it seems to me that their close ties to the big drug companies might be influencing their anti-colloidal silver stance. That’s just my opinion.
But there’s another important issue that anyone contemplating using colloidal silver for diabetes might want to take into account. On his web site, Dr. Ray Sahelian, M.D. notes a study in which it was documented that one patient who had been using colloidal silver for diabetes for two years, developed a minor case of argyria (skin discoloration from embedded silver particles) under his fingernails.
In my layman’s opinion, this indicates that the patient had been using excessive amounts of colloidal silver on a regular basis as a means of helping control his diabetic symptoms.
Indeed, in the study noted by Dr. Sahelian, it was reported that the gentleman had been taking a commercial colloidal silver product at 140 ppm, which is a very strong concentration of colloidal silver for anyone to be taking regularly. After all, a normal concentration is about 10 ppm, making this gentleman’s colloidal silver intake 14 times more highly concentrated than normal.
This study was apparently published in the International Journal of Dermatology, back in 2003. Here’s an excerpt from it:
“A 65-year-old male presented for skin examination and was incidentally noted to have discoloration of the fingernails. These findings were completely asymptomatic.
The patient had been taking colloidal silver supplementation (140 ppm silver) for 2 years as therapy for diabetes. He first noticed the onset of nail discoloration 1 year ago. His past medical history included type II diabetes and hypertension. His current medications were metformin, glyburide, and benazepril.
Physical examination revealed slate-gray discoloration involving the lunulae of the fingernails (Fig. 1). The skin, mucous membranes, and sclerae were unaffected.“
So it only took one year worth of excessive colloidal silver usage to notice the onset of argyric skin-staining symptoms – a sure sign of abusive rather than responsible colloidal silver usage.
The takeaway from this clinical account is that colloidal silver – and any other natural substance, for that matter – should never be used in excessively high concentrations or dosages for long periods of time.
If you need to use extremely high concentrations of colloidal silver, or higher-than-normal daily dosages in order to help control diabetic symptoms, then wisdom and common sense dictate you should get with your doctor and consider another option.
Always Monitor Nutritional Intervention
for Serious Conditions with your Medical Specialist
This is another good reason why, when you have a potentially serious health issue such as diabetes, your medical specialist should be directly involved in all of your health care decisions.
Your specialist, for example, can help you compare “before and after” blood tests to see whether or not any nutritional intervention you’re using, such as colloidal silver usage, is having a positive (or negative) effect on your blood sugar, organ function or other aspects of your overall health. And then your specialist can advise you from there.
Here are three articles you might want to read, regarding how to establish a safe, daily colloidal silver dosage for nutritional supplement purposes, based on your body weight and the ppm of the colloidal silver product you’re taking:
- Colloidal Silver Dosages: Rule-of-Thumb Guidelines for Varying Conditions Based on Experiential Accounts
While the above articles are about establishing a safe daily nutritional supplement dosage for colloidal silver, they are not about establishing a daily dosage specifically for diabetes. Again, that’s something you should determine under the guidance and direction of your diabetes specialist, or a local naturopath trained and experienced in the holistic treatment of diabetes.
Diabetes Care: Healing Candida Yeast Infections with Colloidal Silver
Many diabetics suffer from chronic Candida yeast infections, because of their blood sugar abnormalities. But according to anecdotal reports, when they use colloidal silver the Candida symptoms are greatly alleviated if not completely cured.
Here are a couple of anecdotal reports in that regard:
“I am a diabetic, and suffer every now and then with yeast infections. I use my fine mist spray bottle at bedtime and after my shower. The itching and burning dissipates almost immediately.“
– DH, Charleston, WV
That’s a particularly interesting account, since some studies, such as this one, have found colloidal silver to be even more powerful than prescription antifungal drugs for controlling fungal infections.
Shirley Hull, who runs a health retreat in FL, recommends women with persistent or severe Candida yeast infections drink 2-4 ounces of colloidal silver in divided doses throughout the day, for a few days to a week at most, until the Candida infection is cured.
For women with vaginal Candida yeast infections, she also recommends making a simple douche out of several ounces of water and four capsules of a good, probiotic supplement such as lactobacillus acidophilus, and douching with it each morning or evening (whatever is convenient) to help re-establish colonies of beneficial microbes in the vaginal tract. She says this combination knocks out vaginal Candida yeast infections very quickly. (Learn more, here.)
Finally, she recommends taking a good oral probiotic supplement daily during this time, and for at least a week afterward, to help re-establish colonies of the beneficial microbes in the digestive tract so they can keep the Candida yeast from reaching infectious levels again.
Diabetes Wound Healing with Colloidal Silver
People with diabetes often have a hard time getting wounds to heal. But when they apply colloidal silver topically, even stubborn wounds seem to heal up quickly and completely.
Here’s a testimonial from a diabetic regarding colloidal silver and wound-healing:
“I’m also diabetic, which means cuts and scratches in the leg or feet are sometimes difficult to heal. If I get a scratch or a cut on my legs, I rub colloidal silver up and down where the wound is. The silver heals the wound twice as fast. I also use the colloidal silver for athlete’s foot – clears it up immediately.“
– Mike T., Challis, ID
And here’s another interesting testimonial on the increased wound-healing experienced by a diabetic:
“One my friends who is diabetic smashed his thumb real bad, 7 or 8 days before he got to hunting camp. It just wouldn’t heal. So we used a cotton pad soaked with colloidal silver, wrapped it up, and the very next day it had started to heal. Three days later it was healed. He takes a gallon home every year now!“
– J.H.K., Maricopa, AZ
And here’s a testimonial from a female diabetic who says she’s no longer prone to infections since she’s started taking colloidal silver:
“Colloidal silver has made a difference in my life. I have diabetes and was prone to various infections…not so after taking the colloidal silver daily. I am so much better.“
– Mary R.
Research Supporting Silver for Wound Healing in People with Diabetes
The use of antimicrobial silver for certain symptoms of diabetes such as wound healing seems to be backed up by sufficient clinical data. For example, there’s this notation in the Journal of Industrial Microbiology & Biotechnology:
“Silver products have been used for thousands of years for their beneficial effects, often for hygiene and in more recent years as antimicrobials on wounds from burns, trauma, and diabetic ulcers.
Silver sulfadiazine creams (Silvazine and Flamazine) are topical ointments that are marketed globally. In recent years, a range of wound dressings with slow-release Ag [i.e., silver] compounds have been introduced, including Acticoat, Actisorb Silver, Silverlon, and others.“
– Journal of Industrial Microbiology & Biotechnology, Volume 33, Number 7, 627-634, May 25, 2006
Diabetics are frequently afflicted with painful and chronic leg ulcers. But according to one study, a simple colloidal silver spray can help heal leg ulcers quite effectively:
“Sixteen patients with leg ulcers were treated with a colloidal silver spray. The solution was applied once daily for the first few days, then twice weekly. The infection subsided in all cases.
After instruction, patients performed the therapy at home without supervision. No discomfort or side effects were observed. There was no persistent discoloration of the skin that could be attributed to silver. In all cases the infection subsided.“
– Haeger, Knut. 1963. Preoperative treatment of leg ulcers with silver spray and aluminum foil. Acta Chirurgica Scandinavica, 125, 32-41.
A 2002 study on the effects of antimicrobial silver on extremely severe diabetic wounds was published in the journal NeuroRehabilitation by Dr. Robert O. Becker, M.D., of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse, New York.
Dr. Becker found that silver nylon wound dressings that shed silver ions when used on severely infected wounds triggered dramatic healing in six insulin-dependent diabetic patients who were on the verge of having amputations due to the severity of their chronic infected wounds.
According to the study:
“Nine cases of chronic infected wounds non-responsive to standard therapy were treated with the application of silver nylon alone. Six of the cases were in insulin-dependent diabetics with severe peripheral neuropathy and varying degrees of impaired peripheral circulation.
Four of the diabetic cases were serious enough to have had amputations advised as a last resort, or to have had prior amputations done for identical lesions on another extremity. One case was in a patient with severe peripheral neuropathy of unknown etiology. Two cases were traumatic wounds in otherwise normal patients. Both had also been advised amputation by the previous treating physician.
In all cases infection control was achieved in 3 to 7 days and all treated wounds healed with restoration of all local tissues to their normal state. Times to full healing varied from three weeks to three months depending upon the extent of the initial condition.
All diabetic cases with peripheral neuropathy demonstrated return of normal sensation, however only in the treated area and along the nerve tracts proximally and distally thereto.
Sensory loss in adjacent areas not exposed to silver ions was not relieved. The return of sensation to the treated areas was generally complete but transitory, gradually diminishing until the area became asensate in about one year following treatment.
Despite this subsequent sensory loss in the diabetic patients, all other regenerated tissues in the treated area remained normal for all follow up times.“
What’s more, in an article published in Science Daily, titled “Diabetic Foot Amputations Avoided with Silver Nanoparticles,” researchers stated:
“One of the major complications of diabetes is the appearance of wounds in the lower extremities that do not heal properly. In a new study, a group of researchers created a solution made of silver nanoparticles, which in clinical trials has healed ulcers in people with diabetic foot, avoiding the amputation of more than 90 percent of patients treated.“
Finally, in a 2017 study published in the International Journal of Medical Nano Research, titled, “Silver Nanoparticles for the Rapid Healing of Diabetic Foot Ulcers,” the study authors reported:
“Herein we present for the first time the use of AgNPs for the treatment of diabetic foot ulcers of grade II and III of Wagner classification.
Ulcers were treated by topical administration of AgNPs (at 1.8 mg/mL of metallic silver). This treatment was repeated every 24 h for minimal 7 days. The amount of metallic silver to be applied in the injury was calculated on the basis of the content of metallic silver present in the AgNPs solution.
In all the cases presented in this study, a significant improvement in the evolution of ulcers was observed upon AgNPs administration.
The edges of the lesion reached the point of closure. These results constitute the basis for further studies on the use of AgNPs for the treatment of chronic ulcers from different origins.“
So here we see the results from a live human study in which a 1.8 ppm concentration of silver nanoparticles were applied topically to the diabetic ulcers of two different patients, for seven days, and in both cases, the wounds healed up and closed beautifully!
Silver Relieves Blood Platelet Clumping
Interestingly, clumping of blood platelets is often a serious problem for people with diabetes, sometimes leading to heart problems and poor circulation in the extremities.
But in a study titled “Characterization of Antiplatelet Properties of Silver Nanoparticles,” researchers found that:
“Silver nanoparticles also suppressed the aggregation of platelets obtained from patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Thus, significant inhibition of platelet functions with a relatively low dose of nanosilver, combined with the lack of cell lysis, raise the hope for its use as an antiplatelet therapeutic agent.“
Colloidal Silver is Not a Cure for Diabetes
All of that taken together is pretty darned interesting, I think you’ll agree. But I still haven’t seen any reliable clinical data from studies on humans to sustain the idea that colloidal silver can help cure Type II diabetes.
My personal thoughts on the subject – strictly from a layman’s perspective – are that in addition to colloidal silver there are a number of traditional natural substances said to benefit Type II diabetics, such as cinnamon, chromium, vanadium, ginseng, magnesium, zinc, aloe vera gel, Gymnema, and even herbal remedies such as Nopal cactus and Fenugreek.
Therefore, a good naturopathic physician with experience in helping remediate the symptoms of Type II diabetes should be consulted in determining which of these natural substances might be beneficial for a person’s particular situation, since no two diabetics are exactly alike.
And never forget to keep your medical specialist in the loop at all times so that it can be determined whether or not any natural substances being taken might conflict with your prescription medications, or cause dosages to have to be adjusted should there be a beneficial effect.
Where Can You Find High-Quality Colloidal Silver?
You can purchase colloidal silver from many health food stores, or from online vendors on Amazon.com, SwansonVitamins.com and other websites.
Costs can range between $20 to $30 for a tiny, four-ounce bottle! That can be quite expensive.
But here’s the good news: You can make your own high-quality micro-particle colloidal silver for about 36 cents per quart with the Micro-Particle Colloidal Silver Generator from The Silver Edge.
And the device is so simple to use, anyone who’s ever made coffee with a kitchen countertop coffee maker can use a Micro-Particle Colloidal Silver Generator.
Discover how simple it is to make your own high-quality colloidal silver with a new Micro-Particle Colloidal Silver Generator at this link.
Learn More About Colloidal Silver…
One last thing: A tremendous wealth of information on colloidal silver can be found at The Silver Edge website.
For example, you can find nearly 500 articles on the powerful healing and infection-fighting properties of colloidal silver, at this link.
And you can watch over a dozen “how-to” videos on making and using colloidal silver at this link.
You might even want to get a copy of my FREE 30-page Colloidal Silver Safe Dosage Report, which is yours by just clicking the link.
And finally, you can learn more about making your own high-quality colloidal silver with a brand new Micro-Particle Colloidal Silver Generator from The Silver Edge, simply by clicking the link in this sentence.
Meanwhile, I’ll be back next week with another insightful article on colloidal silver…
Yours for the safe, sane and responsible use of colloidal silver,
Steve Barwick, author
Important Note and Disclaimer: The contents of this Ezine have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Information conveyed herein is from sources deemed to be accurate and reliable, but no guarantee can be made in regards to the accuracy and reliability thereof. The author, Steve Barwick, is a natural health journalist with over 30 years of experience writing professionally about natural health topics. He is not a doctor. Therefore, nothing stated in this Ezine should be construed as prescriptive in nature, nor is any part of this Ezine meant to be considered a substitute for professional medical advice. Nothing reported herein is intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. The author is simply reporting in journalistic fashion what he has learned during the past 17 years of journalistic research into colloidal silver and its usage. Therefore, the information and data presented should be considered for informational purposes only and approached with caution. Readers should verify for themselves, and to their own satisfaction, from other knowledgeable sources such as their doctor, the accuracy and reliability of all reports, ideas, conclusions, comments, and opinions stated herein. All important health care decisions should be made under the guidance and direction of a legitimate, knowledgeable and experienced health care professional. Readers are solely responsible for their choices. The author and publisher disclaim responsibility and/or liability for any loss or hardship that may be incurred as a result of the use or application of any information included in this Ezine.
Copyright 2019 | Life & Health Research Group, LLC | PO Box 1239 | Peoria AZ 85380-1239 | All rights reserved.