The mulberry tree
1-Deoxynojirimycin (DNJ) is an alkaloid that has so far only been found in one plant worldwide, the so-called mulberry tree. DNJ was first found in its roots, but the leaves and other parts of the tree also contain the alkoloid. Relatively high concentrations are found especially in the white mulberry(Morus alba)
DNJ has proven positive effects on diabetes mellitus type 2 (“diabetes”). On the one hand, it inhibits the enzyme alpha-glucosidase, which breaks down multiple sugars in the small intestine so that they can pass through the intestinal wall into the blood. Thus, the sugars are absorbed much less, which leads to a lower blood sugar level after eating (postprandial) (postprandial hyperglycaemia is lower). In addition, DNJ prevents glucose molecules from binding to haemoglobin, resulting in less glucose circulating in the blood. This can reduce the dreaded late complications of diabetes. Last but not least, DNJ has the ability to repair the insulin-producing islet cells of Langerhans in the pancreas. In this way, natural insulin production is stimulated again.