Ways to bring your sugar level back to normal and reduce risk of diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is a result of our diet. Too much starchy food can cause insulin resistance. Insulin is produced by our pancreas and is used to shuttle glucose from the blood into the cells. The more glucose from starchy food in the blood, the more insulin is produced, until a point when the body becomes resistant to the effects of the insulin. This then causes spikes in blood sugar levels, known as hyperglycaemia.
Beyond the effects of diabetes, the effects of high blood sugar levels include loss of sensation in limbs, loss of eyesight and kidney function and an increased risk of heart disease and stroke. The effects of low blood sugar can also be difficult, causing confusion and dizziness and in extreme cases a loss of consciousness. This hypoglycaemia can be a result of stress and hormone dysfunction, which impacts our ability to store glycogen.
Therefore, monitoring and maintaining even levels of blood sugar is crucial to living a healthy life. Diet and exercise are excellent ways to regulate blood sugar levels and to help regulate insulin release. However, there are other natural ways of regulating our levels and therefore reducing the impact of inflammation and other health difficulties. These natural remedies include: Gymnema Sylvestre Extract, Apple Cider Vinegar, Ceylon Cinnamon, Bitter Melon Extract and Olive Leaf Extract.
Gymnema Sylvestre Extract
This extract comes from a woody climbing shrub. The name essentially means the destroyer of sugar and is known to decrease the absorption of sugar from the intestine. It is also thought to increase insulin because of the extracts ability to encourage growth of cells in the pancreas. There is an obvious benefit of this extract in reducing blood sugar levels, if you find yourself susceptible to hyperglycaemia. However, if your blood sugar levels drop low then this extract can cause hypoglycaemia. Therefore, it is important to monitor your blood sugar levels.
One of the happy side effects of Gymnema Sylvestre Extract is weight loss. As the extract blocks the intake of sugar, then the calories do not reach the blood stream either. Therefore, people take this extract to help with diets. It is thought that the extract will reduce the cravings for sugar and you should be able to go more than three hours without experiencing a need for sweet food. This means that stubborn fat is likely to melt away.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Cosmopolitan magazine called Apple Cider Vinegar a magic potion. This is because the vinegar has cosmetic factors, as it contains acetic acid which burns carbs quickly in the gut and therefore reduces the calorie intake of the body. This means that Apple Cider Vinegar is more popularly used to aid weight loss. If you put two or three drops into a glass of water and drink on an empty stomach, it can then help with the digestion of food. Some argue you can actually eat carbs for free, not free from cash payment but free from the calories that cause weight gain. However, as studies are keen to point out, this only works to a certain degree and therefore can be counter-productive, as you build poor eating habits. Also, they make clear that you should never drink the acid undiluted, as it can cause problems in the gullet and the lungs, as neither are made to cope with this level of acid.
However, the real benefit to those of us struggling to regulate our blood levels is the impact it has on the enzyme in the stomach responsible for digesting starch. This slows the rush of sugar to the blood stream and prevents the crash and burn effect of spikes in blood sugar. The vinegar also keeps the sugar in the blood for longer, meaning that it allows for a slow release of sugar and therefore helps you to feel full for longer.
There are some concerns about adding to the acidic content of the stomach and there are some worries about the side effects. Therefore, reading the label and being sure to take the dosage recommended is advisable.
Organic Ceylon Cinnamon
Cinnamon is a bit of wonder spice and known throughout time by herbalists as a medicine. All cinnamon can be used to help with blood sugar control and it also with insulin resistance. However, Ceylon Cinnamon is particularly effective because it includes only minor levels of coumerin, which can be linked to damage of the liver. Therefore, Ceylon Cinnamon Capsules can be taken without risk of damage to health in other ways.
This spice is best taken as a pre- diabetic prevention method. Studies have shown that it is similar in effectiveness to berberine and metformin. It is also capable of reducing the plasma glucose concentration, so some people already with type 2 diabetes have reported positive results to the levels of sugar in their blood. However, this should be taken in consultation with your doctor.
Bitter Melon Extract
There are some impressive reports about the abilities of Bitter Melon Extract. This is not because it is a wonder food. In fact, the fruit looks a little bit like a diseased cucumber and is chalky to taste. Therefore, you want be tucking into this as a breakfast meal anytime soon. However, as an extract people have reported that the extract has been as effective as drugs prescribed by doctors. The fruit and the seeds can be turned into a medicine that helps the tolerance of the body to glucose. It is said to lover HbA1a, which is a measure of blood sugar control over time. Therefore, its effect is not just on the immediate flow of sugar through the blood but a long term control of levels.
The extract is said to activate an enzyme, AMPK, which is responsible for the transportation of glucose from the blood to the surface of the cell. It therefore makes the body more efficient in handling the glucose within the blood and so evens out levels. One man reported that after a while he could take just Bitter Melon extract to maintain his type 2 diabetes and speaks in miracle terms about the impact of the extract. However, before changing from your daily medication it is important that you consult with a doctor and respond to professional advice.
It is important to know that Bitter Melon extract can also cause hypoglycaemia, or low blood sugar. Therefore, you should be disciplined in the monitoring of the levels of sugar in your blood. If you become dizzy or confused you should stop taking the extract and speak to a doctor. It could just be a matter of eating some carbs to balance your levels again but seeking advice is always your best bet.
Olive Leaf Extract
When you listen to all the experts they talk about the Mediterranean diet with much respect. If you ever visit remote Italian villages you are aware of a large number of active older people and you begin to understand that maybe there is something in the idea that there must be something in the food they eat. The diet is rich in healthy oils, not least is Olive Oil.
However, the Olive Tree also gives us Olive Leaf extract. These leaves impact on the formation of advanced glycation end products – also known as AGE. By inhibiting AGE formation, the Olive Leaf extract has been seen to have positive preventative and therapeutic effects on diabetes. This means that the leaf has hyperglycemic effects, reducing the blood sugar levels. It also controls blood glucose levels in the body. The polyphenols in the leaf has a vital role in delaying the production of sugar, which causes inflammatory diseases such as diabetes. All in all, Olive Leaf Extract has a powerful effect on people with type 2 diabetes or people at risk of diabetes.
Obesity in itself can be a cause of type 2 diabetes. However, obesity might be a result of inflammation, as well as being a cause of inflammation. Your gut may be swelling because of aspects in your diet or your lifestyle. This means that control of blood sugar levels can also be helped by reducing this inflammation through the taking of antioxidants. For instance, Cranberry Concentrate has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It is an evergreen shrub that grows in wet areas and is known to improve blood vessel flow. It has long been used in folk medicine to reduce blood sugar levels. This super food is also thought to helps with cholesterol and heart disease, therefore the healing properties of the concentrate are impressive. You could of course drink Cranberry Juice but it would mean drinking a lot to have the affects you hope for, therefore taking the concentrate supplement might be more efficient.
Similar to Cranberry is Tart Cherry Extract. There is something in the dark red colour of these fruits that help with health – blueberries are also considered something of a superfood. The Tart Cherry holds a flavonoid called anthocyanins. This is also an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory. The extract is thought to reduce the pain from inflammatory injuries and is used by ancient tribes for help with the healing of muscle pain. However, for those of us who struggle with our blood sugar levels, then the use of Tart Cherry Extract can inhibit certain enzymes and boost others which help to regulate glucose in our blood.
Slippery Elm Bark Extract and Green Tea extract also have these properties of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. Diabetes is essentially an inflammatory disease, therefore any extract that has properties to control inflammation can help control sugar levels in the blood and prevent diabetes. Slippery Elm Bark has been used for centuries by Native Americans as a poultice and general medicine. Green Tea has many benefits, including protecting the heart. However, it also works to improve blood vessels, which in turn help the body better deal better with blood sugar.
All of these extracts have a positive effect on health but may also have side effects. It is a good idea to read the labels and check the dosages. As with all supplements you need to be certain that the balance of supplements taken will not interact with drugs you are already taking or impact on other conditions. The recommended dosage on the label of most supplements are well below the upper value you can take but to be sure you should ask a medical professional.
Diabetes can be a difficult condition to live with and manage. Type 2 diabetes is reversible with the right approach to diet and exercise. Some nutritionists claim that the increase in blood sugar levels, insulin resistance or the lack of control over blood sugar levels is a result of our modern diet, which is filled with processed sugars. Some advocate a move to a paleo diet, eating only that which the caveman had access to, mainly meats, fish, nuts and berries.
This is not to say that there is no place for medication, if your doctor says this is important. Equally, there are also many positive effects from taking supplements to help your body better deal with our modern diet. Taking supplements that increase the enzymes that help us to process starch is one such option. If we break down the starch better and it gets to the blood more efficiently and from there to the cells, then we will find our blood levels staying stable. It is also possible to use antioxidants and anti-inflammatories to help with the health difficulties associated with diabetes.
The obvious advice is to take a hybrid approach to the issue. You should better manage your diet and avoid processed sugars as much as possible. The less you eat the less you will crave and the more likely you are to maintain a healthy blood sugar level. Exercise is important too as it helps the glucose in the blood reach the cells, therefore processing the sugar better. However, as part of this healthy regime should be extracts and supplements that can aid the body in the natural processes of glucose and insulin production that will keep your healthy and help you feel better. In short, a mixture of all these approaches will benefit your life.