Diabetes, also known as diabetes mellitus, is a very common health disorder. It is a chronic (long-term) disease in which the body finds it difficult to regulate the quantity of sugar in the bloodstream.
There are two major types of diabetes;
- Type 1 Diabetes: This is less common and in this type of diabetes, the body produces little to no insulin. This is because the pancreas cells that make insulin stop functioning. As such, daily insulin injection is needed.
- Type 2 Diabetes: This is the more common type of diabetes. It is most common in adulthood. However, due to the increasing rate of obesity, its diagnosis in teens and children is on the rise. In this type of diabetes, the body gets resistant to insulin or does not use it properly. It should also be noted that not all type 2 diabetics are overweight or obese.
There are other types of diabetes as some people cannot be classified as a type 1 or type 2 diabetics. Gestational diabetes falls into this category. In gestational diabetes, high blood sugar develops, during pregnancy, in a woman that does not have diabetes.
Common symptoms of diabetes include; excessive thirst, weight loss, fatigue, increased urination, hunger, slowly healing wounds, and blurred visions.
In as much as there is no cure for diabetes, you can avail yourself to various treatments with the consultancy of your doctor.
Here are some tips and good practices, to consider, if you are dealing with diabetes;
- Ensure you monitor your sugar level on a regular basis.
- Strive to follow a healthy eating plan and regime.
- Include exercises in your daily activities.
- Exposure to early morning sunlight can be beneficial to you as this sunlight helps in the production of vitamin D, in the body, which is essential for insulin production.
- Ensure you consume lots of water daily. Water helps to keep you hydrated and also helps to break down sugar.
- You could opt for meditation, yoga, and deep breathing to help relieve stress and anxiety as stress hormones could contribute to blood sugar spikes.
Below are home remedies for diabetes;
1. Mango Leaves
The tender leaves of a mango tree contain vitamin C, pectin, and fiber which can help to inhibit some symptoms of diabetes such as unexplained weight loss, frequent urination, and blurry vision. Mango leaves are also rich in tannin which is linked to the treatment of diabetes in its early stages. To curb the rising sugar levels, grind a handful of mango leaves and then add into a glass of warm water. Drink the infusion early in the morning before breakfast.
2. High-Energy Breakfast
If you have type-2 diabetes, you should kick-start your day with a high-energy breakfast. Medical experts recommend that you take more calories during breakfast and a few at dinner to decrease hyperglycemia. You should consume omelets, sandwiches, yogurt parfaits, smoothies, scrambled egg, and more.
Cinnamon offers an array of health benefits including stimulating glucose sensitivity and lowering the body’s glucose levels. To prepare the infusion, steep 3-4 cinnamon sticks in a glass of hot water for 15 minutes. Drink the tea once every day until you notice some improvement. However, you should take in moderation to avoid the risk of liver damage.
4. Bitter Gourd (Bitter Lemon)
Bitter gourd contains charantin, a glucose-like compound that helps to lower the blood sugar levels. Additionally, it stimulates insulin secretion which makes it beneficial to patients who have type-1 diabetes. You can prepare your bitter gourd juice by soaking freshly chopped bitter gourds in a bowl of water for 10 minutes, add a little of salt and toss them in a juicer. Give it a good spin, pour into a glass and then add a quarter tsp of turmeric. You may want to flavor with some honey. Drink the juice every morning.
5. Indian Gooseberry (Amla)
Amla is commonly referred to as the precious gift from nature. It contains chromium, a mineral that makes your body respond to insulin. Furthermore, it’s packed with vitamin C which helps your pancreas function at optimal levels. To make the infusion, extract the juice from three Indian gooseberries, then, add into a cup of water. Consume the solution early in the morning on an empty stomach. Give it at least half an hour to do its work before consuming any milk-based beverage.
6. Fenugreek Seeds
Apart from its culinary use, fenugreek is packed with medicinal properties. Fenugreek seed lowers the blood sugar levels and slows down the absorption of carbohydrates. This herb is also a rich source of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants which protect the body from damage caused by free radicals. To keep diabetes at bay, soak some seeds in water overnight, and then drink one cup of the solution in the morning. Alternatively, eat two tbsp of fenugreek seeds every day followed by a glass of milk.
7. Black Plum
Black Plum has potent medicinal qualities. It has carminative, diuretic, and ascorbic properties which makes it effective in the treatment of type-2 diabetes. This fruit has hypoglycemic effects, meaning they reduce the body’s sugar levels gradually. For these reasons, you should include this seasonal fruit in your daily diet.
8. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera helps to treat numerous health problems including diabetes. It contains glucomannan, a soluble fiber that aids in reducing blood sugar levels. To prepare this herbal medicine, mix half a tsp of turmeric with one tsp of aloe vera gel. Consume the mixture in the morning and evening for two consecutive months. Aloe vera can also help to treat other associated problems like wounds, infections, and ulcers thanks to its powerful antioxidants.
9. Curry Leaves
Since ancient times, curry leaves have been used to treat bloated stomach, diarrhea, peptic ulcer, and diabetes. Curry leaves contain fiber, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, and vitamin C. These minerals control the breaking of starch to glucose. To obtain the benefits of this herb, chew 5-10 curry leaves every day for three consecutive months. Alternatively, incorporate fresh curry leaves into your smoothies and salads. Make sure you don’t cook the leaves to avoid ruining its potent nature.
10. Okra (Lady’s Fingers)
Okra belongs to the hibiscus family. It contains folic acid, vitamin C, potassium, and calcium. Furthermore, okra is packed with polyphenolic molecules which help to manage the blood sugar in type-1 and gestational diabetes. Studies have also linked this okra to inhibiting hunger cravings making you feel full for longer. For this remedy, chop some okras and soak in a cup of water overnight. In the morning, discard the okras and drink the water on an empty stomach. You can also make it a common ingredient in your stews and soups.
Guava is a diabetic-friendly fruit. It’s rich in dietary fiber which helps to ease constipation and most importantly, it reduces the chance of acquiring type-2 diabetes. Before you eat this delicious fruit, you should peel it as eating guava without the peel is more effective in lowering blood sugar. For best results, eat the fruit in moderation.
Garlic contains numerous compounds that help treat a number of health problems including diabetes. The allicin compound, in garlic, gives it the strong pungent taste. Allicin has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties which slow down the damage caused by free radicals. In addition to that, allicin reduces the glucose and cholesterol levels. To treat diabetes, chew 2-3 garlic cloves every day. You can include it in your breakfast bowls and salads. If you want to get rid of the bad breath you can drink lemon juice or green tea thereafter.
13. Drink More Water
When you have diabetes, water can be a healthy solution to balancing your sugar levels. This is because when glucose goes down, you’re at a higher risk of dehydration. Some of the symptoms of mild dehydration include fatigue, dizziness, headache, and dark-colored urine. So, to ensure your kidneys are able to eliminate the waste products, you should drink more water throughout the day.
Ginseng contains glycosides which have anti-diabetic effects. While there is no conclusive evidence on its effectiveness in treating diabetes, preliminary studies show ginseng can lower the blood glucose. The herb can be used to make extracts, capsules, or tablets. Since the long-term effects are not clear, it should not be used by nursing or pregnant mothers.
15. Take Chromium Supplements
Chromium helps your cells to absorb the glucose you consume from food. Chromium can be found in chicken, brewer’s yeast, shellfish, wholegrain, and corn oil. If you have type-2 diabetes, you should take 1000mg of chromium supplements every day. Consult with your doctor before taking any supplement.
16. Apple Cider Vinegar
A study by Arizona State University showed that ACV is effective in treating diabetes. It works by controlling blood glucose which is likely to rise immediately after taking a meal. ACV contains acetic acid and essential amino acids which plays a key role in losing weight. This is vital because obesity is linked to diabetes. For this remedy, prepare a concoction by adding two tbsp of ACV in a glass of water and drink before taking a meal. ACV is safe, so it’s worth trying if you have type-2 diabetes.
Multiple studies show that sunlight can help in the treatment of diabetes and childhood obesity. When you expose your skin to sunlight, the skin produces nitric oxide which aids in controlling metabolism. At the same time, the body absorbs vitamin D, when exposed to early morning sun, which helps in the production of insulin. With this in mind, you should expose your body to moderate amounts of early morning sunlight.
18. Consume Low-Salt Diet
If you have type-2 diabetes, you should take a sodium-restricted diet. When you take too much salt, your blood pressure can rise which can make you more susceptible to kidney disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, and heart disease. If you have type-2 diabetes, you should consume less than 2300mg of sodium every day. Also, avoid canned meat, salad dressings, sausage, and salty snacks. The best way to improve the natural flavor of food is by adding herbs and spices.
19. Epsom Salt Bath
Soaking your feet in saline water can help to regulate the blood sugar levels. Also, when you have diabetes, you’re likely to have a dry, itchy skin. The salt water can work as an exfoliant while improving circulation.
This perennial flowering plant offers a broad spectrum of nutrition which makes it effective in the treatment of diabetes. It’s rich in vitamin B complex, beta-carotene and vitamin E. Alfalfa has diuretic effects and also helps reduce the blood sugar. To treat diabetes, you can make alfalfa tea or take alfalfa leaves raw.
21. Jamun Fruit
The bark and leaves of a jamun plant have anti-diabetic properties. They contain tannin and ellagic acid which helps to control surging blood sugar levels. To treat type-2 diabetes, add half a tsp of jamun seed powder to a glass of water and drink when on empty stomach.
22. Gluten-Free Diet
Gluten is a unique compound found in certain grains like barley, wheat, and rye. When you have type-1 diabetes, you should reduce the consumption of gluten, gluten-containing whole grains, and other gluten-containing cereals. The next time you visit the supermarket or grocery, opt for gluten-free foods.
While most people believe that grapes can increase the blood sugar, this is far from the truth. Since grapes are rich in fiber, they would keep the sugar levels in check. Also, they contain fructose and glucose which are beneficial to a diabetic patient. Although there are different types of grapes, green grapes are the best since they contain naturally occurring sugars. If you can’t get fresh grapes, you can purchase grape powder and add it to your meals.
If you have type-2 diabetes, you should exercise every day to keep your blood sugar in check. That way, you not only improve your nerve function but also fight insulin resistance. Regular exercise would also aid in the uptake of glucose from the bloodstream into the muscle tissues. Furthermore, if you exercise often, you’ll lose weight as obesity is one of the contributing factors to diabetes. Before you begin any workout, make sure you consult your healthcare practitioner.
25. Plant-Based Diets
To prevent or treat type-2 diabetes, you should take plant-based foods like whole grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, among others. When you have diabetes you may have weakened blood vessels, so these foods should be your best friend as they would help improve the condition of your blood vessels. Avoid fatty foods because they inhibit the effect of insulin in the body.
26. Get Enough Sleep
Whether you have type-1 or type-2 diabetes, a poor sleeping pattern can make the glucose level to rise. So, if you’re diabetic, you should get more than eight hours of sound sleep. This way, you’ll not only concentrate better but also get rid of stress and anxiety which are the two contributing factors to diabetes.
27. Canola Oil
Apart from reducing belly fat, canola oil is beneficial to people with type-2 diabetes. It’s rich in omega-3 fatty acid and monounsaturated fats which help to lower blood sugar. Furthermore, since it’s a vegetable oil it can be included in meals. Also, regular consumption of canola oil can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.
28. Regular Eating Schedule
When you have type-2 diabetes, you should eat two large meals per day instead of a lot of small meals. A regular eating schedule will ensure you don’t pump your body with too many calories at a go. Eating two large meals per day improves insulin sensitivity and promotes weight loss better in patients with type 2 diabetes than eating numerous small meals throughout the day.
29. Peanut Butter
Peanuts have a low glycemic index, so they have a lower effect on your blood sugar levels. Sugar-free peanut butter will make a healthy addition to your meals.
30. Asparagus Racemosus Root
There is scientific evidence that asparagus racemosus root is a potent home remedy for diabetes. The herb’s root boosts the production of insulin and keeps the blood sugar levels in check. Asparagus root does this by partly inhibiting carbohydrate digestion and absorption as well as enhancing cellular insulin action. Just steam the root, add some olive oil and eat it.
While there is limited research on parsley’s effectiveness in treating diabetes, laboratory studies have shown that the eugenol component in parsley can reduce the sugar levels. To curb diabetes, make herbal tea and drink once a day.
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