Food & herbs that lower blood sugar levels

Written by scott christ
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Food & herbs that lower blood sugar levels
People with diabetes often have to take shots to lower blood sugar levels. (needles image by Douglas McLaughlin from Fotolia.com)

Many foods and herbs have proven effective in lowering blood sugar levels. High levels of blood sugar are a problem for many people, such as diabetics, who may look for ways to lower their blood sugar levels naturally.

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Sweeteners

Foods that are high in sugar have a negative effect on blood sugar levels, causing rapid spikes that can be unhealthy for people who suffer from conditions such as diabetes. There are many artificial sweeteners available on the market that can help lower blood sugar levels because they do not contain any actual sucrose. Some of these artificial sweeteners include Splenda, stevia and saccharin.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is a spice that has been shown to lower blood sugar levels naturally. Cinnamon is an excellent spice to add to foods like oatmeal, toast or even chilli, and it is also available in capsules. Cinnamon may help decrease blood glucose, and can help lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood as well.

Ginseng

A 1995 Finnish study of 36 people with type 2 diabetes showed that those taking 200 mg of Asian ginseng daily had decreases in their fasting blood glucose levels at the end of eight weeks.

Low-Glycemic-Index Foods

Foods that are low on the "glycemic index" cause blood sugar levels to rise only a little or not at all. Such foods, which can help lower blood sugar levels, include fruits such as pears, apples and oranges; vegetables like spinach, lettuce tomatoes and celery; and all types of nuts and beans.

Fenugreek

Fenugreek seeds are traditionally used in Indian cooking and have been shown to lower blood sugar levels and increase insulin sensitivity. In a 1990 double-blind study conducted by the Indian National Institute of Nutrition, 10 people with type 1 diabetes who consumed 100g of ground fenugreek seeds every day showed a 30 per cent decrease in fasting glucose levels after 10 days, and their glucose tolerance also improved.

Gymnema Sylvestre

The Gymnema sylvestre plant is called in Hindi the "destroyer of sugar." In one study, when Gymnema sylvestre was given to patients with type 1 diabetes, fasting blood sugar levels decreased. Some patients with type 2 diabetes who take Gymnema sylvestre are able to discontinue prescription diabetes medications, while others are able to reduce their medication dosages. Gymnema sylvestre has not produced any side effects in clinical tests.

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