Are you diagnosed with type 1 or type 2 diabetes? If yes, this is the article for you. The article presents six essential natural supplements that will maintain your blood glucose levels permanently. Diabetes, being a life-long burden, can reduce your confidence. Supplement your diet with fenugreek, cinnamon, biotin, zinc, omega-3 fatty acids, as well as prebiotics and probiotics. These healthy changes will get your life back on track. Remember, the goal is to sustain the right body balance with maintained blood sugar levels.
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is a permanent, rapidly increasing disease that has affected around 34.2 million Americans to date. After intake, food is broken down to sugar- glucose, which is further supplied to all the cells of your body for energy. There is ongoing communication between blood sugar levels and pancreas. After a heavy meal, your blood sugar levels tend to rise. This signals your pancreas to secrete insulin, which further lowers the increased blood levels. During long hours of hunger, too, your pancreas comes to your rescue to utilize the stored glucose in your body until you feed yourself.
Types of diabetes
The discussion above is a typical scenario. However, individuals who have diabetes do not have this communication going on well. Their bodies either don't make sufficient insulin-termed type 1 diabetes, or their cells become unresponsive to the insulin being produced, which is called type 2 diabetes. Apart from these two conditions, there are many more diabetes subtypes, for example a pregnant woman can also develop gestational diabetes, which passes after the baby is born.
Therefore, in this article, we discuss six essential supplements that will help you keep your sugar levels maintained permanently.
Fenugreek is the bitter spice that finds its extensive use in culinary and therapeutics. It is an excellent mean for detox, cleansing your system, and making you feel refreshed. Fenugreek is essentially recommended for type 2 diabetes, as it enhances insulin sensitivity of the body cells. Apart from this, the antidiabetic properties of fenugreek are rendered due to its ability to stimulate the pancreas' beta-cells (cells that make insulin) and inhibit certain intestinal enzymes' activity absorbing food containing sugars.
Meal tip: soak a spoonful of fenugreek seeds overnight. Boil them using the same water and drink it on an empty stomach every morning.
Cinnamon is an age-old spice that adds savor to different cuisines. Cinnamon reduces blood glucose levels by acting on your liver and kidney, reservoirs of glucagon, a compound broken into glucose. Some studies have demonstrated that cinnamon intake can decrease serum glucose levels and reduce cholesterol levels in people suffering from type 2 diabetes. It is crucial because the prevalence of cardiovascular diseases is high in individuals who have diabetes.
Meal tip: replace sugar with cinnamon and see the difference. Cinnamon, being a mild natural sweetener, can be used in various dishes, including beverages such as cinnamon tea or cinnamon cake.
Biotin, or vitamin B7, is a water-soluble essential vitamin that is taken or supplemented through diet. Biotin is easily found in green leafy vegetables, meat organs, fish, meat, eggs, etc. Some clinical trials have listed that biotin reduces blood glucose levels by acting on the liver and pancreatic cells. In addition to the insulin regimen, Biotin supplements can lower blood glucose levels and control lipid (fat) concentration in poorly controlled type 1 diabetes patients.
Meal tip: include a lot of leafy vegetables and eggs into your diet.
Our gut is a crucial component of our body that maintains our physical and mental strength. Research has revealed that the composition of gut microbiota (essential microbes that reside in your gut) is involved in developing insulin resistance to type 2 diabetes. Prebiotics and probiotics are imperative contenders that can improve insulin resistance by reshaping the gut flora's composition. It is because food is completely digested in the small intestine and rapid absorption occurs within. Studies have also demonstrated the similarities between the microflora of individuals who have diabetes.
Meal tip: garlic, onion, chickpeas, watermelon are some of natural prebiotics you can easily add to your diet regimen.
Zinc is an essential antioxidant and is required in trace amounts for the normal functioning of our body. Taken in certain doses, zinc promotes the natural growth of hair, skin, and nails. New reviews suggest zinc supplementation helps in glycemic and lipid control, maintains blood pressure, and renders its anti-inflammatory properties. Zinc has similar effects on insulin, and it, therefore, can stimulate tissues by enhancing insulin production and glucose utilization. Some studies have also revealed that zinc deficiency intensifies diabetes-induced testicular and hepatic (liver) damage. Augmenting zinc to your diet can avert the onset and the advancement of diabetic cardiomyopathy, that is, disorder of the cardiac (heart) muscles in individuals diagnosed with diabetes.
Meal tip: red meat and poultry add most of the zinc to the American diet. Apart from this, enrich your diet with green leafy vegetables, beans, crabs, lobsters, and dairy products.
Any fish lover in the house? If so, this is a piece of excellent news for you. Fish oil is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids. These are polyunsaturated fatty acids that function against autoimmune, inflammatory, and renal (kidney) diseases. Food rich in Omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the risk of insulin resistance in people with type 2- diabetes. Apart from this, research has shown that Omega-3 fatty acids keep your heart healthy.
Meal tip: other natural sources of Omega-3 fatty acids include flaxseeds and walnuts, which can be added as side snacks.
Take home message
To sum up, the natural ingredients discussed above can be used in the diet of individuals surviving with diabetes. However, let’s be realistic, they can be easily used as disease management tools instead of relying on artificial supplements. A good lifestyle and proper diet can ultimately help you maintain better condition. However, anything in surplus can be harmful, and therefore, we urge you to add these supplements to your diet in the right amounts. Consumers and patients who chose to use these supplements are recommended to seek guidance from their health advisors if needed.