Deanne, one of the readers of my website recently asked me to take a look at a supplement called Glucotor v.2. After reviewing the ingredients and products website I was intrigued, so this one is for you Deanne 🙂
Glucotor v.2, made by Baseline Nutritionals, is billed as the “ultimate metabolic enhancer”. I'm guessing that the “v.2”. part of the name means that this is the 2nd version of the supplement but I'm not sure. Glucotor is said to “support your body's ability to maintain healthy blood sugar levels and optimize glucose metabolism”.
Ironically, the website also states that Glucotor v.2:
is not a diabetes formula and is not sold as a diabetes supplement.
Rather, the supplement is supposed to help people “manage many of the problems associated with a bad diet (particularly high sugars and high glycemic foods)”. I find this interesting because on the products website I see that Glucotor v.2 might do all of the following:
- Enhances the body's ability to metabolize glucose and fats
- Smooths sugar spikes from high glycemic meals
- Mimics the life extension potential of calorie restricted diets
- Contains Gymnema Sylvestre to support healthy blood sugar levels
- Formulated with Cinnulin PF, a cinnamon extract to improve glucose metabolism
- Supports pancreas and liver health
4 out of these 6 claims have to do with regulating blood sugar levels – one of the big issues people with diabetes worry about. But yet, they say it's not a diabetes formula or diabetes supplement. To me, it seems like they want to help diabetics – but don't want to come out and say it's for diabetics.
I understand why they would say this on their website – it's their way of saying don't use this product in place of diabetes medications. I do applaud them for saying this but, I also understand why a diabetic might be interested in this product.
|Nopal cactus||300 mg|
|Konjac mannan||233 mg|
|Gymnema sylvestre (25%)||192 mg|
|Fenugreek extract (60%-80%)||300 mg|
|Cinnulin PF (R)||100 mg|
|Bitter melon extract||67 mg|
|Corisolic acid banaba leaf extract (1%)||16 mg|
Let's now look at each of these ingredients separately
Another names for nopal cactus is prickly pear cactus. Several studies (5 at the time I write this) have noted that nopal cactus can help lower blood sugar levels. Various studies show that this ingredient may lower blood sugar up to 46% in some people.
There are many species of nopal cactus. Thus far most of the research showing it helps lower blood sugar uses the species called Opuntia streptacantha. I could not determine which species of nopal cactus is in Glucotor v.2.
In addition, research tends to use the stems of the plant to lower blood sugar. Other portions of the plant may not have the same effect. The website also does not indicate which part of the plant they are using.
2 capsules of Glcotor v.2 has 300 mg of nopal cactus. Research however tends to use more than this – 500 grams – to lower blood sugar. Lower amounts may work also but I am not aware of any research.
This is another name for the fiber glucomannan. Glucomannan is also found in the supplement Glucosulin which I reviewed previously. To learn more about Konjac mannan read my Glucosulin review.
A few studies have shown that gymnema sylvestre can reduce blood sugar and hemoglobin A1C. But most studies have used about 400 mg of gymnema sylvestre which is more than is in Glucotor v.2. Again, lesser amounts may work also. I am just not aware of any evidence on this. It's probably good that Glucotor uses less than this because some research suggests that gymnema sylvestre might increase insulin production.
This means gymnema sylvestre may interfere with insulin and other diabetes medications.
While the herb has fiber (most herbs /plants have fiber) fenugreek also appears to stimulate insulin secretion from the pancreases. At least one study has also noted that fenugreek might lower triglycerides as well.
Every time I see the word “extract” I always wonder what part of the plant the extract is from. It appears that most of the active ingredients in fenugreek are in the seeds of the plant. That’s probably where the extract derived from but since the website doesn't say I can’t tell for sure.
To achieve these results studies often use much more fanugreek that is in Glucotor. Studies often use about 10 grams of fenugreek per day, while glucotor only contains 300 mg. That's not necessary bad because fenugreek side effects can include diarrhea, abdominal pain and severe allergy .
This is a fancy name for cinnamon. It's actually an extract of cinnamon. There is conflicting evidence on cinnamon and diabetes. Some research finds cinnamon can lower blood sugar levels. other research finds cinnamon does not lower blood sugar levels. Another name for cinnulin PF is cinnamomum burmannii.
Like the other ingredients in Glucotor v.2, bitter melon also has evidence. As I write this there are at least 5 studies that bitter melon can help lower blood sugar. Most studies are older with some dating to the 1980s. Still, they hint that bitter melon may reduce blood sugar and HBA1C levels.
Children should avoid bitter melon. There are case reports of bitter melon causing convulsions in children. Pregnant women should avoid Glucotor. Bitter melon may cause abortions.
Vegicaps. As far as I can tell, the word vegicaps just refers to the capsules that contain the other ingredients. They care called vegi-caps because the capsules are made from vegetable material. This is good for strict vegetarians.
Will Glucotor help you live longer?
On the Glucotor v.2 website I see this statement:
studies have shown that the ingredients in Glucotor® v.2 may mimic the effects of calorie restricted diets, thereby possibly extending life itself. This is very exciting.*
Really? In my review, I didn't see any published peer reviewed studies showing that the unique blend of ingredients in Glucotor v.2 slowed the aging process or extended the lifespan. Eating 25%-30% fewer calories a day has been shown in lab animals to extend life by as much as 40%. This probably works in people also, but because we life so long, its hard to say for sure.
That said, I can kind of see how glucomannan – by filling you up – might make people eat fewer calories. In theory, that may slow aging. But, as far as I can tell, this has never been proven in humans.
You'll notice that asterisk at the end of the statement (I've put it in red so you can see it better). That's their way of saying that they can't prove that Glucotor extends life either.
Who makes Glucotor v.2?
Baseline Nutritionals is the name of the company which also markets a variety of other supplements in addition to Glucotor. According to their website (baselinenutritionals.com), they are located at 800 E. Charleston Blvd. Las Vegas, NV 89104. Click the link to see what the location looks like. The company did not have a rating with the BBB when this review was updated. See the BBB File for more information. To contact Baseline Nutritionals, call (800) 440-3120.
How much does Glucotor v.2 cost?
On the company website 1 bottle (90 capsules) costs $37.46. If you take the recommended 2 capsules per day, a bottle will last you about 1.5 months.
Will Glucotor v.2 work?
Glucotor v.2 is said to be the “ultimate metabolic enhancer”. Really? Does Baseline Nutritionals really feel that Glucotor v.2 is superior to exercise at enhancing metabolism? The evidence for it controlling blood sugar levels is on the ingredients, not the supplement itself.
That said, based on the evidence I do feel that some people may experience a reduction in blood sugar levels (while others may not notice any difference). But, will Glucotor v.2 correct the problems associated with eating a bad diet? Honestly, I don't think so because there is more to eating badly than having high blood sugar levels.
Based on what I could find out about the ingredients in Glucotor v.2 I come the following conclusions:
1. All of the ingredients in Glucotor v.2 have some evidence that they can help reduce blood sugar levels. Some of the studies are poorly designed, are older and have small numbers of people but they do exist nonetheless.
2. I could not find any studies specifically on Glucotor v.2 or the unique blend of ingredients in the product to prove that this blend lowers blood sugar levels in humans. That said, it's possible that in some people it would do this. Others, may not notice any difference in blood sugar, triglycerides or HB A1C levels.
3. All of the ingredients in Glucotor have the potential to interact with diabetes medications. This is very important for diabetics to remember. It's recommended that diabetics – as well as anyone who has a health disorder – take Glucotor v.2 to their doctor, a pharmacist and even a registered dietitian (RD) who has expertise in supplements, before using the product.
4. Pregnant or lactating women should avoid this product given that some of the ingredients may harm the baby.
5. Children/adolescents should avoid Glucotor v.2.
7. I am aware of no supplement that rivals exercise in its ability to modulate blood sugar, triglycerides, Hb A1C levels or other conditions associated with bad eating habits.
If you don't know the right way to exercise or eat right, leave a comment and I will be glad to give you some tips on finding people in your area who can help you.
What do you think?