7 Natural Remedies for Diabetes
Diabetes and its complications have become the fifth-leading cause of death in the United States. In 2014, the most recent CDC estimates of diabetes, 29.1 million adults and children in the United States, or 9.3% of the population, were affected.
This disease shortens lives by almost nine years on average and increases your risk of heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, infections, blindness, amputations and depression, just to name a few.
We spend billions of dollars a year on “The War On Diabetes,” and the disease is still growing by leaps and bounds.
Are we going on the right path or do we need to do something differently? Here are 7 safe and natural ways to help diabetics in their fight to control their blood sugar:
- Cinnamon:Cinnamon has a water-soluble phenolic compound, methylhydroxychalcone polymer (MHCP), which is responsible for its insulin-like activity. In diabetics, cinnamon has shown improvement in fasting glucose and lipid levels.
The recommended dose is about ½ teaspoon of powdered cinnamon per day. Higher dosages should be monitored by a trained physician.
- Green tea:Green tea (Camellia sinensis) contains compounds called EGCG which lower serum glucose and enhance the activity of insulin. In diabetic rat models, green tea was also protective against diabetic kidney disease and fatty liver.
- Alpha-lipoic acid:Alpha lipoic acid is a powerful antioxidant and in several studies, alpha-lipoic acid appears to help lower blood sugar levels and also helps with diabetic neuropathy.Suggested dose for diabetes and diabetic neuropathy is 400-600 mg twice a day.
- Chromium:Required for both carbohydrate and lipid metabolism, chromium is mainly found in brewer’s yeast, barley flour, onions, tomatoes and sea vegetables. Chromium supplementation has been shown to improve insulin receptor function and insulin sensitivity.A meta analysis of 14 trials evaluated patients with type 2 DM who had a baseline A1C level of 7.0 – 10.2%. Chromium picolinate and brewer’s yeast at doses of 200-1000 mcg/d for 6-26 weeks reduced A1C levels by an average of 0.6%.
- Berberine:Berberine is a plant alkaloid found in several plants, such as goldenseal, barberry, Oregon grape root and Coptis. Berberine was studied in patients with type 2 diabetes and hyperlipidemia. After 3 months of taking Berberine, subjects in the treatment group demonstrated improvement in fasting glucose, A1C, and cholesterol parameters (Zhang 2008).
- Fenugreek:Fenugreek is found primarily in the Middle East, India and Mediterranean countries. The seeds are commonly used as a food spice and employed in medicine for their nutritive, cholesterol lowering and blood sugar lowering effects. Fenugreek contains a compound called 4-hydroxyisoleucine that stimulates insulin secretion and in clinical studies, it’s shown to reduce glucose levels, total and LDL cholesterol levels and triglyceride levels.Fenugreek seeds can be a healthy addition to any diabetic’s diet.
- Vinegar:Acetic acid in vinegar delays gastric emptying and thereby delays carbohydrate absorption. Two tablespoons of vinegar, when taken in conjunction with high glycemic index foods lower post meal time glucose by 25-35% and increases satiety.Even with natural solutions, what works for one person may not be right for the next. It’s important to have the supervision of a trained physician in Integrative and Functional Medicine. This will help you find personalized, safe, natural and effective solutions for your individual needs.