HERBAL HEAL­ING

Di­a­betes is al­most com­pletely pre­ventable and re­versible. Re­cent stud­ies on var­i­ous nat­u­ral reme­dies pro­vide hope. Here are three to con­sider

Amazing Wellness - - CONTENTS - By Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa

Con­trol Blood Sugar Nat­u­rally Di­a­betes is al­most com­pletely pre­ventable and re­versible. Re­cent stud­ies on nat­u­ral reme­dies pro­vide hope. Here are three to con­sider.

More than 30 mil­lion peo­ple, or al­most 10 per­cent of peo­ple liv­ing in the United States, have di­a­betes. About 24 per­cent of peo­ple with di­a­betes are un­di­ag­nosed. The preva­lence of pre­di­a­betes is also on the rise, es­ti­mated to af­fect 33.9 per­cent of U.S. adults aged 18 years or older, based on their fast­ing glu­cose or A1C level. Those with pre­di­a­betes have above-nor­mal lev­els that are just be­low the de­fined thresh­old of di­a­betes. On top of that, nearly half (48.3 per­cent) of adults 65 years or older have pre­di­a­betes. With­out ap­pro­pri­ate in­ter­ven­tion, peo­ple with pre­di­a­betes are very likely to be­come type 2 di­a­bet­ics within a decade.

Taken to­gether, that’s about half of Amer­i­can adults with un­healthy blood sugar lev­els. This dis­or­der of high blood sugar is the sev­enth-lead­ing cause of death in the United States, and peo­ple with di­a­betes typ­i­cally have med­i­cal costs that are ap­prox­i­mately 2.3 times higher than those with­out di­a­betes.

Type 2 di­a­betes is dan­ger­ous. It of­ten leads to kid­ney dis­ease, blind­ness, leg and foot am­pu­ta­tions, nerve dam­age, and even death. It is, how­ever, an al­most com­pletely pre­ventable and re­versible con­di­tion. With diet and lifestyle changes, plus some se­lected nat­u­ral reme­dies, you can greatly im­prove your chances of avoid­ing or re­vers­ing it.

CON­TROL­LING BLOOD SUGAR

The body breaks carbs down into glu­cose, and then in­sulin moves the sug­ars into cells. Faced with an ex­cess of di­etary carbs or prob­lems with in­sulin func­tion, this process fails, and blood glu­cose lev­els rise. The Amer­i­can Di­a­betes As­so­ci­a­tion rec­om­mends con­trol­ling carb in­take by count­ing carbs or us­ing a food ex­change sys­tem. Plan­ning meals ap­pro­pri­ately will likely fur­ther im­prove blood sugar con­trol. Many re­cent stud­ies also show that a diet with low­ered carb in­take helps re­duce blood sugar lev­els and ex­tends mor­tal­ity.

Keep in mind that when us­ing any rem­edy that af­fects blood sugar, it is a very smart idea to mon­i­tor glu­cose in the blood to as­sess progress.

Gym­nema sylvestre, known as GURMAR, or killer of sweet, is an es­pe­cially ef­fec­tive Ayurvedic herb from In­dia. When chewed, its leaves block sweet taste on the tongue, re­duc­ing the ap­peal of sug­ary foods. In use for cen­turies in In­dia, it is now be­ing rec­og­nized by modern science. Its ben­e­fits ex­tend to type 1 and type 2 di­a­betes, and it sig­nif­i­cantly im­proves choles­terol and triglyc­eride lev­els as well. It cer­tainly could be the back­bone of a nat­u­ral di­a­betes pro­gram. It is un­likely that gurmar heals the un­der­ly­ing rea­sons for high blood glu­cose,

but taken daily it will usu­ally re­duce blood sugar lev­els.

Sev­eral stud­ies have ac­cu­mu­lated to sup­port the over­all ben­e­fit of gurmar. One re­cent sci­en­tific pa­per said, “G. sylvestre has good prospects in the treat­ment of di­a­betes as it shows pos­i­tive ef­fects on blood sugar home­osta­sis, con­trols sugar crav­ings, and pro­motes re­gen­er­a­tion of pan­creas. The herbal ex­tract is used in di­etary sup­ple­ments since it re­duces body weight, blood choles­terol, and triglyc­eride lev­els and holds great prospects in di­etary as well as phar­ma­co­log­i­cal ap­pli­ca­tions.” An­other pa­per from 2017 stated that gurmar shows re­mark­able hy­po­glycemic prop­er­ties and forms the plat­form of di­a­betes ther­a­peu­tics.

A ran­dom­ized, dou­ble-blind, placebo-con­trolled clin­i­cal trial from 2017 eval­u­ated the ef­fect of G. sylvestre ad­min­is­tra­tion on meta­bolic syn­drome (MetS), in­sulin se­cre­tion, and in­sulin sen­si­tiv­ity. A group of 24 pa­tients (with­out phar­ma­co­log­i­cal treat­ment), 30–60 years old, with di­ag­no­sis of MetS, took 600 mg of gurmar ex­tract per day or a placebo for 12 weeks. The herb ex­tract de­creased body weight, BMI, and VLDL lev­els.

Use up to 10 grams per day of dry pow­der in a cap­sule or 1,000 mil­ligrams of Gym­nema sylvestre ex­tract (leaf) stan­dard­ized to 25 per­cent gym­ne­mic acid. Mon­i­tor your blood glu­cose as you ad­just the dose so as to not lower blood sugar ex­ces­sively.

FENU­GREEK, a small legume, is an ef­fec­tive blood sug­ar­low­er­ing herb. Since fenu­greek ac­tu­ally tastes good, it may be more prac­ti­cal for peo­ple to use on a daily ba­sis. One study used fenu­greek seed baked into flat bread, which proved ef­fec­tive.

In one open study of 60 type 2 di­a­bet­ics, 25 grams per day of fenu­greek led to im­por­tant im­prove­ments in over­all blood sugar con­trol, blood sugar el­e­va­tions af­ter a meal, and choles­terol lev­els. A dif­fer­ent open study showed re­sults with only 15 grams of fenu­greek daily. In a clin­i­cal trial study, 24 type 2 di­a­betic pa­tients took 10 grams/day of pow­dered fenu­greek seeds (soaked in hot wa­ter) for eight weeks. The wa­ter­soaked fenu­greek im­proved many as­pects of di­a­betes.

It is not clear whether the ac­tive prin­ci­ple in fenu­greek lies in the highly sol­u­ble fiber con­tent, most notably galac­toman­nans, or in an­other un­known com­pound. Fenu­greek is ef­fec­tive in both types of di­a­betes, is in­ex­pen­sive, well tol­er­ated, and, at 28 per­cent pro­tein con­tent, a fa­vor­able food source. Di­a­bet­ics of­ten ex­pe­ri­ence car­dio­vas­cu­lar symp­toms. Death from car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease is 60 to 70 per­cent in di­a­bet­ics, ver­sus 20 to 25 per­cent in non­di­a­bet­ics. Legumes are ben­e­fi­cial at least in part be­cause they con­tain a wa­ter-sol­u­ble, gel-form­ing fiber which has been shown to en­hance di­a­betic con­trol.

Ev­i­dence sup­ports the role of a novel com­pound found in minis­cule quan­ti­ties in fenu­greek. Not found in any mam­mal tis­sue, the pe­cu­liar free amino acid, 4-hy­drox­y­isoleucine, in­creases in­sulin pro­duc­tion. Stud­ies in rats and dogs in­di­cate that the ef­fect is at least in part from a di­rect pan­cre­atic B cell stim­u­la­tion.

Use up to 15 grams of ground fenu­greek seed as pow­der, cap­sules, or a condi­ment.

Speak­ing of sol­u­ble fiber, ALOE, packed with this ben­e­fi­cial con­stituent, has been shown to ben­e­fit blood sugar. One study in­volved Aloe vera leaf pulp ex­tract, com­pared to a com­mon di­a­betes drug. Aloe ex­tract sig­nif­i­cantly de­creased serum glu­cose and sig­nif­i­cantly in­creased serum in­sulin lev­els as com­pared to con­trols, more ef­fec­tively than the drug. Re­searchers at Bay­lor Col­lege of Medicine in Hous­ton stated that aloe prepa­ra­tions of­fer an at­trac­tive ad­junc­tive strat­egy for im­paired fast­ing glu­cose and im­paired glu­cose tol­er­ance in con­di­tions such as pre­di­a­betes/ meta­bolic syn­drome. An­other in­ves­ti­ga­tion found that aloe, in peo­ple with pre­di­a­betes or early un­treated di­a­betes, re­duces body weight, body fat mass, and in­sulin re­sis­tance. In a 2017 study in 30 pa­tients, a for­mula con­tain­ing aloe and a few other con­stituents (fenu­greek, gar­lic, etc.) was found safe and ef­fec­tive in low­er­ing the lev­els of blood glu­cose and serum lipids in pa­tients with ad­vanced type 2 di­a­betes.

Use up to 2 ounces per day of aloe gel.

aloe vera Stud­ies sug­gests aloe re­duces body­weight, body fat mass, and in­sulin re­sis­tance.

fenu­greek

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