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Altai Balance: Does It Work?

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Altai Balance: Does It Work?

Dietary supplements are frequently touted to help manage diabetes, and many other health conditions, as well. One supplement that has entered the diabetes scene is Altai Balance. What is this supplement all about, and is it something that you should try?

The premise

According to the Altai Balance website, there is a direct link between uncontrolled blood sugar and airborne toxins called particulate matter (PM). Particulate matter contains microscopic solids or liquid droplets that are so small, they can be inhaled and cause serious health problems, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The diameters of PM vary, and they’re made up of hundreds of different chemicals. PM enters the atmosphere from automobiles, industries, and power plants.

The EPA regulates inhalable particles and has established rules for state and local governments to reduce emissions of pollutants. People are able to protect themselves when PM reaches harmful levels by receiving notifications about the Air Quality Index (AQI). Visit AirNow’s website to learn more.

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Altai Balance, on their website, states that, “New research published in the Lancet Planetary Health and Diabetes Journal concluded a definite association between PM and diabetes concluding that all 3.2 million cases of diabetes in 2018 were due to dangerous PM.”

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The claims

Altai Balance claims that their “proprietary blend of 19 of the highest-quality nutrients and plants” that “target and detoxify dangerous particulate matter” supports healthy blood sugar levels for both women and men.

Altai Balance states that, for “best results,” you should take one capsule of their supplement with a big glass of water every day to bring you back into a healthy rhythm. You’ll also feel energized, well-rested, and be able to enjoy life again. It does offer a 180-day 100% money back guarantee, no questions asked.

Interestingly, an internet search links Altai Balance with something called both the U.S. Marine’s Pinch Method and the Bizarre Mongolian Pinch Method, neither of which are mentioned on the Altai Balance website. A video on YouTube mentions the pinch method but does not describe it; this video is poorly done, with improper use of English.

The ingredients

The Altai Balance website claims that there are 19 proprietary ingredients in their formulation. Under “Ingredients” on the site, however, only 8 ingredients are listed:

  • White mulberry
  • Bitter melon
  • Licorice root
  • Alpha-lipoic acid
  • Gymnema sylvestre
  • Juniper berries
  • Taurine
  • Banaba

A more complete list of ingredients is provided on Amazon’s site, that includes the above ingredients as well as vitamin C, vitamin E, biotin, magnesium, zinc, manganese, chromium, guggul, cinnamon bark, yarrow flowers, and vanadium. The website does not list how much of each ingredient is in their product; however, a review from The Courier-Herald reports that chromium and biotin are the two largest ingredients in the blend.

Do these ingredients support blood sugar? Some evidence points to chromium, cinnamon, bitter melon, gymnema sylvestre, and banaba as having a blood-sugar-lowering effect. However, what’s not stated on the product’s website is that a) research is preliminary with some of these ingredients and b) there isn’t much that points to these ingredients in counteracting PM. And again, the doses of these ingredients are not provided on the website.

Interestingly, a study published in 2018 in the journal Respiratory Research links carotenoids, vitamin D, vitamin E, vitamin C, curcumin, choline, and omega-3 fatty acids as possibly playing a role in protecting against asthma and other chronic respiratory conditions. Another study in the June 2021 Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy links other plant compounds, such as phytosterols, saponins, epigallocatechin gallate, and resveratrol as reducing PM-induced cellular oxidative stress. None of these ingredients are in Altai Balance.

Bottom line

It’s hard to understand the link between Altai Balance’s claim of PM-induced diabetes cases with the ingredients in their supplement. The company is correct in that PM can lead to the development of type 2 diabetes; however, the study published in The Lancet Planetary Health involved U.S. veterans who were followed for a median of 8.5 years. The article states that, “Globally, ambient PM2.5 contributed to about 3.2 million incident cases of diabetes.” Altai Balance’s website incorrectly states that these 3.2 million cases were DUE TO dangerous PM.

No one disputes the dangers of PM for numerous health implications, including diabetes, but there are other well-established factors that contribute to type 2 diabetes, including family history, obesity, and an inactive lifestyle.

The website’s “Scientific References” section displays logos from the National Center for Biotechnology Information and the American Diabetes Association, among others, and then lists a number of journal articles citing studies with the ingredients in Altai Balance’s formulation. A number of these studies were done in rodents. There are no listed studies of clinical trials or any type of research using Altai Balance.

Altai Balance proudly states that their “capsule” is tested and manufactured in the USA in their “FDA registered” facility. This is potentially misleading, as “FDA registered” means that the FDA is aware that the product is being manufactured; it’s not the same as “FDA approved.”

Currently, Altai Balance is promoting a “limited time special pricing”: $49 for 1 bottle (30-day supply), $39 per bottle for 3 bottles (total of $117), and $34 per bottle for 6 bottles (total of $204). But stock levels are limited, so they encourage you to act now.

As with many supplements promoting blood sugar control, “buyer beware.” If you decide to take this or any supplement, be sure to discuss with your health care provider beforehand, check your blood sugars to learn how this supplement affects you, stop taking it if you develop any side effects, and call your provider if this happens.

Want to learn more about managing blood sugar? Read “What Is a Normal Blood Sugar Level?” and “Managing Your Blood Glucose Ups and Downs,” then see our blood sugar chart.

Amy Campbell, MS, RD, LDN, CDCES

Amy Campbell, MS, RD, LDN, CDCES

Amy Campbell, MS, RD, LDN, CDCES on social media

A Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator at Good Measures, LLC, where she is a CDE manager for a virtual diabetes program. Campbell is the author of Staying Healthy with Diabetes: Nutrition & Meal Planning, a co-author of 16 Myths of a Diabetic Diet, and has written for  publications including Diabetes Self-Management, Diabetes Spectrum, Clinical Diabetes, the Diabetes Research & Wellness Foundation’s newsletter, DiabeticConnect.com, and CDiabetes.com

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