People with diabetes are unable to produce enough of the hormone insulin, which is a compound that regulates the glucose level in the blood. The failure to produce insulin leads to a high blood sugar-glucose level in the body. Excess sugar or glucose content has serious complications and over time, increases of heart disease and nerve damage. It also increases the possibility of kidney disease and loss of vision. Diabetes is of two distinct types. The rare diabetes insipidus, or more commonly insulin-dependent diabetes or type 1 diabetes, which can develop at any age but usually develops before the age of 30. The second type of diabetes is called diabetes mellitus, or more commonly non-insulin-dependent diabetes or type 2 diabetes. This form of the disorder accounts for 90% of diabetic cases and makes its appearance usually in middle age.
When the pancreas ceases its function of insulin production due to any reason, type 1 diabetes is said to have occurred, as insulin is necessary for glucose regulation in the blood. While the causes of this abrupt halt in the production of insulin is uncertain, it is believed by many scientists and researchers that an autoimmune disorder, where the body attacks its own pancreatic cells could be responsible, while others suggest the involvement of a virus in those individuals who have unfortunately contracted diabetes type 1, a lifelong insulin dependency from an external source is necessitated, therefore such people are dependent on insulin throughout their lives. On the other hand, diabetes mellitus or the more common type 2 diabetes develops from insulin resistance in the body. Pancreatic function is normal, and insulin is produced in sufficient quantities but, for some reason, the cells in the body cannot use the insulin. The presence or absence of a lot of body fat or obesity in people plays an important role in most cases of type 2 diabetes. Obesity is one of the major risk factors for contracting this form of diabetes. In either form, both these types of diabetes can arise in anyone due to genetic factors.
Supplements and herbs
These supplements that are being suggested can be used by both type 1 and type 2 diabetics in conjunction with the prescription drugs which may be used for the treatment of the disease. There could be a need to alter dosages for insulin or the hypoglycemic medications used in type 2 diabetes treatments when these supplements are used. The changes in dosages or the application of changed doses must be done under the supervision of a qualified medical professional.
Diabetic nerve damage may be prevented through the use of B vitamins, which also help in the production of enzymes that are necessary in the derivation of energy from glucose. Lowering the blood glucose levels is one of the properties of the mineral chromium. It has also been shown to be effective in reducing cholesterol levels in diabetics. Blood sugar levels can often be controlled when using the herb gymnema sylvestre, which is an ayurvedic herb from India
The painful symptoms of diabetic neuropathy are alleviated by the intake of essential fatty acids which also protect against nerve damage. The use of fish oils, as supplements, increases the levels of "good" HDL cholesterol. This may significantly reduce the risk and potential occurrence of heart disease. Damage to the nerves, to the eyes and to the heart is prevented through the use of antioxidant compounds in supplements. The excess buildup of plague may be blocked or prevented by vitamin E. Glucose metabolism in the body is improved by alpha-lipoic acid. A deficiency in the mineral zinc has been noted in many diabetics. This mineral helps the body utilize its insulin, and it also contributes to faster healing of wounds and other injuries which the excess sugar in the blood slows down. The mineral copper can be added in the supplement if zinc is to be used as a long term supplement. The occurrence of diabetic eye damage may be prevented by the herb bilberry and release of insulin is improved in the body by taurine, which can also prevent the abnormal clotting of blood, which is a contributor in cardiac problems.
What else you can do
It is very important to exercise regularly . The chances of type 2 diabetes is lowered in those who burn more than 3,500 calories a week through exercise. Such people are half as likely to develop type 2 diabetes, when compared to those burning less than 500 calories a week. There are benefits in exercising even in people with type 1 diabetes. It is therefore advisable to lose weight especially if you are obese or are overweight, as this is a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes. Blood sugar can be kept in check by consuming whole grains, plenty of fruits, and vegetables and avoiding high sugar foods.
* Bilberry, 160 mg two times daily. Standardized to contain 25% anthocyanosides.
* Vitamin B complex, One pill every morning with meal. Use a B-100 complex with 100 mcg of vitamin B12 and biotin; 400 mcg of folic acid; and 100 mg of all other B vitamins.
* Chromium, 200 mcg three times daily with food. Chromium may alter insulin requirements.
* Copper / Zinc, 2 mg copper and 30 mg zinc daily. Copper should be added when using zinc longer than one month.
* Gymnema sylvestre, 200 mg two times a day. Gymnema sylvestre may alter insulin requirements.
* Taurine, 500 mg L-taurine two times daily on an empty stomach. Add mixed amino acids if using longer than one month.
* Antioxidants, 400IU vitamin E, 1,000 mg vitamin C, and 150mg alpha-lipoic acid every morning. Alpha-lipoic acid can affect blood sugar.
* Essential fatty acids, 1,000 mg evening primrose oil three times daily; 1,000 mg fish oils two times daily. 1,000 mg borage oil once a day may be used instead of primrose oil.
The blood sugar level in many children may be stabilized by the use of Siberian ginseng, also known as eleuthero. Siberian ginseng can be used for long term treatment and should be started 3 times a week for the first week; five times a week for the second week and every day after that. This method is to see how the herb is tolerated by the child. Breaks can be taken once every two months for a week after usage every day has begun. Please monitor these suggestions carefully through a qualified healthcare practitioner.
The active component GLA in evening primrose oil has been shown capable of preventing nerve damage, where it has arisen due to the fluctuations in the blood sugar level. Suggested dosages for children over the age of twelve are about one capsule a day (1000mg).
Caution: children who have a fever should not be given evening primrose oil.