Study Suggests Yet Another Benefit of Metformin

We have previously written about the multiple health benefits of metformin (brand name Glucophage and others), an oral drug used to treat Type 2 diabetes: Beyond controlling blood glucose levels, this medicine has been linked to a decreased risk of death in people with Type 2, a lowered cancer risk, and possibly an increased life span.

Now, a new study in rats suggests that there may be even more good news about metformin, this time in the area of heart health. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for people with diabetes.

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Researchers at the University of Gothenburg Sahlgrenska Academy in Sweden assigned rats with high blood pressure and insulin resistance to receive either 100 milligrams per kilogram of body weight per day of metformin, 2 milligrams per kilogram per day of rosiglitazone (Avandia), or no drug over the course of 12 months. (Ten rats without health conditions served as a control group.)

At the end of the study period, the researchers found that the rats treated with metformin had improved heart pumping capacity, improved heart efficiency (defined by a greater ability to convert energy into mechanical work), lowered fat accumulation in the heart, and a reduced loss of heart cells. Rosiglitazone did not have any positive effects on heart health.

“The animals in our study were treated with metformin for a whole year, so the effect seems to persist,” noted lead researcher Jörgen Isgaard.

For more information, see the article “Diabetes Drug Can Prevent Heart Disease, New Study Suggests,” or see the study’s abstract from the journal Diabetes.

This blog entry was written by Web Editor Diane Fennell.

  • Carol

    Thank you for this info. I would like to know what the dosage should be to get this advantage.
    I take 1500mg of the time release version. I was originally on 2000 but decided on my own to cut down the dosage. ?Maybe I would be better off with the full 2000mg. (I just don’t like taking meds so thought it was a good idea. Noone has even blinked an eye at the change.)
    Thanks for all of your great info in this letter. I have made some good changes on the opinions of other readers.
    Carol

  • gloria

    wAS TOLD BY DR TO STOP TAKING, TO TAKE ONLY INSLUIN

  • Janice Jarvis

    yes unless you get a reaction like I did. After years on it I got to the point of being short of breath and could not function normally. Onces off of it, I was completly free of symptons in tdhree weeks.

  • Gleny

    Its nice to hear something good about this med.I also hate taking drugs and its messes up my stomach sometimes but does what it supposed to do.I take 500 in am and 500 at night..I also am wondering if this is enough to get benefits from this drug??Thank you…Gleny

  • Bobbie

    Thank you for this blog and article. I am finding that the dosage of Metformin ER that I take is just short of keeping my numbers at the best level, but any more on the dosage is not comfortable acid/diahrrea wise. I am please to know that this is considered still an excellent drug, when Actos and Januvia are having a second and third look.