Diabetes, a state of improperly regulated homeostasis of carbohydrate and lipid metabolism is one of the major killers in recent times. Most prevalent form of diabetes is non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM/type II). Rapid hydrolysis of starch mediated by pancreatic α-amylase and α-glucosidases followed by glucose uptake at intestine results in sudden rise in blood glucose levels, causing hyperglycemia in type II diabetes patients. α-glucosidase inhibitors act as competitive inhibitors of enzymes needed to digest carbohydrates: specifically alpha-glucosidase enzymes in the brush border of the small intestines. Inhibition of these enzyme systems reduces the rate of digestion of carbohydrates. Less glucose is absorbed because the carbohydrates are not broken down into glucose molecules. Natural α-glucosidase inhibitors such as Acarbose and Miglitol used for management of diabetes widely, but they are associated with side effects, in this review search for more natural alpha-glucosidase inhibitors are discussed which are safer as compared to insulin and other oral hypoglycaemic drugs.
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