Diabetes can be a difficult life-long disease for many people. Although medication is useful in helping control blood glucose, it is not always enough and some people would prefer natural methods of control. When combined with lifestyle changes, adding specific spices and herbs for diabetes to a healthy lifestyle can be a winning strategy.
Although ginseng is mostly known for its ability to increase energy, it has profound benefits for managing diabetes. The major benefit of ginseng is its ability to decrease the rate of carbohydrate digestion and absorption. When carbohydrates are digested and absorbed at an elevated rate, blood sugar spikes. By slowing down the rate carbohydrates are processed by the body, blood sugar levels remain more stable. Additionally, ginseng also affects insulin rates. Ginseng causes the pancreas to secret more insulin, which promotes better glucose metabolism.
Cinnamon is easily found as a flavoring agent in many foods, making it easy to incorporate for diabetic health. The major benefit of cinnamon is its ability to help regulate blood sugar levels by encouraging the release of insulin. These benefits are found when cinnamon extract or the whole form of cinnamon is used. For maximum benefit, it is best to use cinnamon sticks and freshly grind them, instead of using pre-packaged ground cinnamon. As little as a teaspoon of cinnamon per day can be beneficial.
Another herb that is associated with energy, but is also a natural method of maintaining blood glucose control, is green tea. Green tea can be found in supplement form, but is also available as a beverage. The main ingredient in green tea that affects blood glucose is epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Since EGCG has been shown to reduce the instance of type 2 diabetes, it is ideal for people who have prediabetes, insulin resistance, or are otherwise at elevated risk for developing diabetes.
Additionally, EGCG helps increase natural insulin activity and controls blood glucose. The relationship between green tea and weight is also important. Since many type 2 diabetes struggle with their weight and may achieve better control or eliminate their diabetes through weight loss, green tea can be an important tool in the fight against both weight and diabetes.
Fenugreek is available in many forms, such as teas or powdered. The main benefit of fenugreek is that it is high in fiber, which helps slow digestion of carbohydrates. Since fenugreek is available in many forms, such as incorporated into baked goods, it is ideal to utilize as an easy fiber boost to help with blood glucose control. Additionally, the high fiber also helps with other components of diabetes, such as hunger control and overall cardiovascular health. Since diabetics are at an increased risk of heart and blood vessel disease, fenugreek can pack an additional punch.
There are many natural products readily available to help stabilize blood glucose and create an added boost to positive lifestyle changes. Since these spices and herbs for diabetes are readily available, they are easy to incorporate into any diet.