Diabetes mellitus is considered as a common, growing, serious, costly, and potentially preventable public health problem. In 2030, the number of people with diabetes is estimated to increase from 117 million in 2000 to 366 million. The prevalence of diabetes has and will continue to have burden on the health and finances of economic climates, which in turn, will impact on individuals, families and nations. There are many different types of insulins available to treat diabetes, but there are still physiological consequences for such use. Alternatives are, therefore, required and this includes herbal preparations as well as dietary plants in the form of curcubitaceae (pumpkin).
Pumpkin is widely considered to have active hypoglycaemic properties. Pumpkin is a plant, which has been used frequently as functional food or medicine and belongs to the family Cucubitaceae, and consists of succulent stem with numerous seeds. Based on previous evidence of its fruit pulp, it is reported to have anti-diabetic effects.
This review has focused on the main medicinal properties of pumpkin and how this has been used in animal models, and point out areas for future research to further elucidate mechanisms whereby this compound may reduce disease risk.