Russian Tarragon Extract (Artemisia Dracunculus L) is a spice herb with a long history of culinary and medical use. Some recent studies also reported possible antidiabetic and hypoglycemic activities[1,2]. Biological activities associated with the anti-diabetic effects of Russian Tarragon Extract include the stimulation of insulin-mediated glucose uptake into cultured skeletal muscle cells.
It has been shown that rising insulin levels by ingesting high amounts of glucose (and/or protein) in combination with creatine increases its uptake into muscles. That technique is not always desired by athletes due to high caloric load.
A study published in Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition  described that administered creatine monohydrate (Creapure™) disappeared from blood stream faster after 1000 mg of Russian Tarragon extract was ingested. Russian tarragon administration resulted in a significant reduction of plasma creatine levels at 60, 90 and 120 min, in comparison to placebo (Fig 1).
Fig 1 – Plasma creatine concentrations: Russian Tarragon Extract (A) or placebo (B)
It was concluded that Russian Tarragon influences plasma creatine levels during the ingestion of creatine monohydrate. The effect of Russian Tarragon is comparable with that of glucose and protein. Further research is needed to evaluate the effects of Russian Tarragon on creatine uptake and retention in muscle.
- Ribnicky, David M., et al. “Improved absorption and bioactivity of active compounds from an anti-diabetic extract of Artemisia dracunculus L.” International journal of pharmaceutics 370.1 (2009): 87-92.
- Ribnicky, D. M., et al. “Antihyperglycemic activity of Tarralin™, an ethanolic extract of Artemisia dracunculus L.” Phytomedicine 13.8 (2006): 550-557.
- Cefalu, William T., et al. “Botanicals and the metabolic syndrome.” The American journal of clinical nutrition 87.2 (2008): 481S-487S.
- Green, A. L., et al. “Carbohydrate ingestion augments skeletal muscle creatine accumulation during creatine supplementation in humans.” American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology And Metabolism 271.5 (1996): E821-E826.
- Jäger, Ralf, et al. “The effect of Russian Tarragon (artemisia dracunculus L.) on the plasma creatine concentration with creatine monohydrate administration.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 5 (2008): 1-2.