Natural remedies for diabetes
Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body is unable to effectively use the insulin it produces. Insulin is a hormone that helps the body use blood sugar as a source of energy. When blood sugar levels are high, it is called hyperglycemia.
There are two main types of diabetes:
- Type 1 diabetes: is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas. It typically occurs in childhood or adolescence, but can also affect adults of any age.
- Type 2 diabetes: This is the most common form of diabetes. It occurs when the body becomes resistant to insulin or does not produce enough insulin to meet the body's needs. It is often associated with risk factors such as obesity, advanced age, family history, unhealthy eating habits and physical inactivity.
Natural remedies for diabetes can be a useful addition to conventional therapy, but they are not considered a cure. It is important to consult your doctor before taking any natural remedies, especially if you are taking medications for diabetes.
Here are some of the natural remedies for diabetes:
1. Diet and physical activity
Diet and physical activity are the cornerstones of diabetes management. A healthy, balanced diet, rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains, can help control blood sugar levels. Regular physical activity, on the other hand, can help improve insulin sensitivity. At least 30 minutes of physical activity per day is recommended.
2. Herbs and supplements
Some herbs and natural supplements can help control blood sugar levels. Among the most common are:
- Gymnema sylvestre
Cinnamon is a spice obtained from the inner bark of some species of trees of the Cinnamomum genus, including Cinnamomum zeylanicum, Cinnamomum cassia and Cinnamomum burmannii. Cinnamon has been shown to have beneficial effects on blood sugar control, particularly in patients with type 2 diabetes, as it can help reduce glucose absorption in the intestine and can help improve insulin sensitivity, hormone that helps cells use glucose.
Fenugreek is an annual herbaceous plant native to Western Asia and the Middle East. Fenugreek has demonstrated effectiveness in improving blood sugar control in patients with type 2 diabetes by reducing glucose absorption in the digestive tract and reducing glucose production by the liver. It can also improve insulin sensitivity.
Gymnema Sylvestre is a medicinal plant native to India. It is also known as the "sugar killing plant" as it contains gymnemic acid, a substance that inhibits sweet taste receptors on the tongue. This can help reduce sweet cravings and, consequently, carbohydrate intake. Furthermore, the gymnemic acids contained in Gymnema are able to reduce the absorption of glucose in the digestive tract and increase the secretion of insulin by the pancreas.
Licorice is a medicinal plant that has been used for centuries in phytotherapy for its numerous beneficial properties. It contains a chemical called glycyrrhizin, which can have beneficial effects on blood glucose levels. In one study, taking 250 mg of licorice extract daily for 12 weeks led to a significant reduction in baseline and postprandial blood sugar levels in patients with type 2 diabetes.
3. Food supplements
Some dietary supplements can help control blood glucose levels. The most common for diabetes are:
It is important to consult your doctor before taking any natural remedy for diabetes. Some natural remedies may interact with diabetes medications or have side effects.