A Natural Approach to Diabetes

With all the recent news about the dangers of diabetes medications, you may be wondering what you can do to manage your condition.  Here is an excerpt from my upcoming book, The Phytozyme Cure, on how to manage diabetes.

About Diabetes

Diabetes is a serious chronic health condition that is the result of elevated blood sugar levels. When blood sugar levels are too high, they become toxic to the organs, including the brain. Remember that our bodies need some sugar to provide energy for many functions. In diabetics, there can be two main problems with the way the body handles sugar. One is that the body has an insulin deficiency, which is the hormone your body needs to process sugar. The other problem is that the body’s cells may be resistant to insulin, which prevents blood sugar from entering cells.

There are three types of diabetes: type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes. While there are some variations in the three types, they are all serious medical conditions that need to be treated by a physician.

Type 1 is also called juvenile diabetes, since it usually develops in childhood or adolescence. Type 1 sufferers have severe insulin deficiencies and require insulin injections.

Type 2 diabetes is also called adult-onset diabetes or non-insulin dependent diabetes. While this type usually strikes adults, it can also affect children. Type 2 is usually linked to eating too-high amounts of refined carbohydrates and sugars, being sedentary, and carrying excess weight. However, it is also the type that responds best to dietary and lifestyle changes.

Gestational diabetes occurs in some women during pregnancy due to hormonal imbalances. Although it usually disappears after the baby is born, it still needs to be addressed because unregulated blood sugars may be damaging to the fetus.

Symptoms of diabetes include fatigue, insatiable thirst, frequent urination, excessive appetite, weight loss or gain, blurred vision, and irritability.  If you suspect that you may have diabetes or have been diagnosed with diabetes you need to be assessed and monitored by a physician.  Diabetes is a serious health condition.

Diet and supplements continued…

The Diet

Most people suffering from diabetes are eating more carbohydrates or fats than their body can handle. To address these concerns, I usually recommend a low sugar, low-refined carb diet with 2 oz of protein such as raw almonds, cashews, tofu, fish, lean chicken or turkey every three hours.

It is also important to eat a high fiber diet since fiber helps regulate the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream.  A high-fiber diet also lowers cholesterol and triglycerides.

Make vegetables the focal point of every meal. You should keep fruit consumption to a minimum; however, eating fruit is better than eating other types of sweets.  Of course, you should always check with your physician first.

Permanently adopting a healthy diet is the best thing a diabetic can do for his or her health. Be sure to eliminate the harmful substances in your diet, particularly refined carbohydrates and sugars, which include so-called healthy sweeteners like honey, maple sugar, and agave. Avoid “diet” and “sugar-free” products as well, because they typically contain synthetic sweeteners that are toxic to the body and damaging to diabetics and non-diabetics alike. Instead, sweeten food with stevia.

Add chromium-rich foods to your diet, including whole grains, eggs, shiitake mushrooms, liver, onions, garlic, cucumbers, green and yellow beans, and moderate amounts of fruit. Try to eat wild salmon twice a week or supplement with essential fatty acids (see below). Also, every day eat at least one large green salad with cold-pressed flaxseed oil dressing.

Supplements for diabetes continued…

Supplementing the Diet

Here are some of the supplements I typically use with diabetics.  You do not need to take all of these supplements.  Start by adding two or three types.  Take them consistently for at least two months.

Some of the best supplements for diabetics include:

-A full-spectrum digestive enzyme formula that includes amylase, lipase, and protease, among other enzymes, is beneficial. Take one to three enzyme capsules or tablets with every meal to help your body break down the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins in your food into natural sugars, essential fatty acids, and amino acids needed for optimal healing.

-Between meals on an empty stomach, you can also supplement with one or more of the following enzymes: bromelain, protease, serrapeptidase, superoxide dismutase (SOD), or trypsin, or a single product that includes some or all of these enzymes; these enzymes can be helpful for diabetes. Start with one capsule or tablet of your chosen enzyme(s) on an empty stomach 20 minutes before or at least one hour after meals, three times daily. You can gradually increase that amount to three capsules or tablets at a time, three times daily, or more with the guidance of a nutritional medicine practitioner who is experienced in systemic enzyme therapy.

-Mineral supplements are also good for treating diabetes. Some studies link a deficiency of chromium, a mineral involved in blood sugar balance, with diabetes. Take 200 micrograms daily of either GTF chromium or chromium picolinate. The mineral vanadium helps the body use insulin more effectively, and I recommend a daily supplement of 25 micrograms.

-Bitter melon, 250 to 500 milligrams daily of a 10:1 extract, which can be beneficial for managing blood sugar. Do not take bitter melon if you are pregnant or nursing or are on insulin.

More supplements for diabetes…

-Gymnema sylvestre extract, 400 milligrams daily, helps repair the pancreas, kidneys and liver—the organs that can be impaired by diabetes.

-Omega-3 fatty acids, 3000 milligrams daily of fish or flaxseed oil, or 500 milligrams daily of DHA-EPA can help to counter inflammation, a causative factor for diabetes.

-Alpha lipoic acid, 300 milligrams daily, has powerful antioxidant properties to help heal the free radical damage involved in diabetes.

-Coenzyme Q10, 100 to 200 milligrams daily, is also helpful for diabetes. CoQ10 is required for the proper functioning of every cell in your body.

Of course, not all of these supplements are required by everyone.  Different things work for different people. Always check with your doctor before starting any new diet or supplement program. This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat disease.

Adapted from The Phytozyme Cure by Michelle Schoffro Cook, BSc, RNCP, ROHP, DNM.

80 comments

Thiruvelan Ramasamy
Past Member 5 years ago

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dw9D2ouM3Fg

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Thiruvelan Ramasamy
Past Member 5 years ago

Diabetes natural treatments; what are common natural treatments, complementary & integrative medicine, start-treating diabetes naturally, benefits of natural treatment and five best natural treatments for diabetes. See this youtube video for details

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GJ Strong
GJ Strong8 years ago

Kate, Type 2 diabetes is preventable. It is the sedatary lifestyle that we are now in that is a big cause of it.

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Chinmayee Jog
Chinmayee Jog8 years ago

Thanks so much for sharing this! Majority of the patients I seem to see in the hospital have diabetes, and the biggest shame of it all is that the Type 2 (which is the most common type) can be prevented by being healthy :( I hope many people benefit from your natural therapies...

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Krasimira B.
Krasimira B8 years ago

Thank you Michelle.

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Beverly L.
Beverly L8 years ago

Type 2 runs in my family and I have always been worried about having it ~ thanks for the wonderful article!

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Suzette Z.
Suzette Z.8 years ago

Type 1 diabetics can eat carbs. They must give the equiv. of insulin to process it. It would be very dangerous to put a kid on a low carb diet. There really needs to be the words type 1 and type 2 behind every suggestion because they are essentially 2 different conditions!
By the way, I got type 1 diabetes at age 40. It is an autoimmune disease that can happen at any time. I have weighed 100 pounds since high school except for my 3 pregnancies where I gained the recommeded 29-33 pounds. With stronger flu bugs and super bugs we need to educate the public. I had the flu and now I DO NOT produce insulin. Yes, I was very healthy, never got sick, strong ANTI-FLU person.

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Amanda L.
Amanda L.8 years ago

good info

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Erin  No news please
Erin R8 years ago

Good article!

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jane richmond
jane richmond8 years ago

Thanks great article

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