Propolis,diabetes mellitus, type 2,Blood glucose,Insulin resistance," /> Propolis,diabetes mellitus, type 2,Blood glucose,Insulin resistance,"/> Effects of bee propolis supplementation on glycemic control, lipid profile and insulin resistance indices in patients with type 2 diabetes: A randomized, double-blind clinical trial
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Journal of Integrative Medicine ›› 2017, Vol. 15 ›› Issue (2): 124-134.doi: 10.1016/S2095-4964(17)60315-7

• Research Article • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of bee propolis supplementation on glycemic control, lipid profile and insulin resistance indices in patients with type 2 diabetes: A randomized, double-blind clinical trial

Nazli Samadia, Hassan Mozaffari-Khosravia,b, Masoud Rahmanianb,c, Mohsen Askarishahid   

  1. a Department of Nutrition, School of Public Health, Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences, Yazd, Iran 
    b Yazd Diabetic Research Center, Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences, Yazd, Iran
    c Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences, Yazd, Iran
    d Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Faculty of Health, Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences, Yazd, Iran
  • Received:2016-08-15 Accepted:2016-11-02 Online:2017-03-15 Published:2017-03-15
  • Contact: Hassan Mozaffari-Khosravi, PhD; E-mail:


 Propolis, a natural resinous substance made by bees from material extracted from plants, flowers and bee's wax, has shown great therapeutic effects and been widely used in food and drug industries. Recently, some researchers have studied the effect of this substance in the treatment of diabetes.


The purpose of this trial was to determine the effect of bee propolis on glycemic control, serum lipid profile and insulin resistance indices in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D).

Design, Setting, Participants and Interventions

This randomized clinical trial involved 66 patients with T2D, which were randomly divided into two groups of intervention (IG) and placebo (PG). IG received 300 mg three times a day for a total of 900 mg/d of propolis pills, while PG received similar pills, lacking propolis, on the same schedule for 12 weeks.

Main Outcome Measures

Fasting blood glucose (FBG), hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein (LDL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), triglyceride (TG), serum insulin and insulin resistance indices were the main outcome measures.


The mean change in FBG between the IG ((17.76 ± 27.72) mg/dL decrease) and the PG ((6.48 ± 42.77) mg/dL increase) was significantly different (P = 0.01). Change in mean HbA1c had a similar pattern to FBG. The mean change in TC between the IG ((5.16 ± 43.80) mg/dL increase) and the PG ((28.9 ± 27.4) mg/dL increase) was also significantly different (P = 0.01), showing the protective role of propolis against the increase in TC. The change in mean LDL was similar to mean TC. There was no significant difference in other lipids or insulin resistance indices between the two groups.


Based on this study, the daily intake of 900 mg of bee propolis supplement for 12 weeks results in improvement of glycemic and some serum lipid levels in patients with T2D.

Trial registration

This study is registered on the website of Iranian Ministry of Health ( with proprietary code of IRCT2014080218659N1.

Key words: Propolis, diabetes mellitus, type 2, Blood glucose, Insulin resistance

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