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Cinnamon for diabetics might lower blood sugar levels in patients suffering from type two diabetes, especially when insulin resistance is an issue. One study shows cinnamon for diabetics decreased cholesterol and glucose level significantly when used for 40 days. The research also revealed lower blood sugar levels almost three weeks after participants stopped taking cinnamon for diabetes, leading scientists to conclude the spice might not need to be consumed every day.
Cassia cinnamon is the most common form used in cooking and represents the type used in the research. It comes from the bark of an evergreen tree grown in Sri Lanka and India. Sixty study participants with type two diabetes were given between 1 and 3 grams of cinnamon each day, while a control group ingested capsules filled with ground wheat flour. The results showed all three groups given cinnamon for diabetes registered lowered glucose, triglycerides, and cholesterol levels.
Blood sugar levels decreased between 18 and 29 percent in diabetic patients who participated in the research. Triglyceride levels fell 23 to 30 percent, and total cholesterol fell between 12 and 26 percent. No significant changes were noted in healthy cholesterol levels, and the group given placebos saw no change at all. Researchers concluded adding cinnamon for diabetics reduces the effects of the disease and might prevent heart disease.
People with diabetes face up to four times the risk of coronary disease when compared to people without the disorder. Health experts believe diet plays a significant role in both disorders. Researchers who conducted the study on cinnamon for diabetics state the spice might be beneficial for healthy individuals to prevent diabetes and heart disease.
Cinnamon contains properties similar to insulin, and its main ingredient consists of polyphenols, a natural antioxidant. This substance might aid proteins in the body that regulate the production of insulin and permit it to travel throughout the body. Cinnamon has also been used for years to treat digestive disorders such as diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and bloating.
Doctors warn people using cinnamon for diabetes to be careful if combining the spice with other dietary supplements. Some common herbs might also lower blood sugar, such as garlic, bitter melon, ginseng, and psyllium. Glucose levels should be checked frequently if using cinnamon for diabetics while taking other alternative herbal remedies. Turmeric, cloves, and bay leaves might also regulate insulin activity.
Cinnamon is one of those things that probably won't hurt a diabetic, but may or may not necessarily help, either. My doc said it had to be a specific species of cinnamon, and you couldn't guarantee the supplements you buy in the drugstore are that particular species.
But, he said if it helped, then go for it. He's not against herbal supplements or alternative medicine; he just wants to make sure his patients aren't relying on those things rather than doing what they're supposed to, like staying on a good diet and getting some exercise. He didn’t want them using it as a crutch.