Before you read this list of supplements that help control blood sugar, please remember that a healthy diet (cut those carbs!) and regular exercise are the key components of wellbeing.
Chromium: In a November Daily Dose email newsletter, Dr. William Douglas wrote that “Chromium is an essential trace mineral that stimulates the enzymes involved in glucose metabolism, helping both diabetics and pre-diabetics to keep their blood-sugar levels in check.”
According to Douglas, studies have found “significant improvement in blood sugar control” with adequate chromium intake and that the mineral can “reduce the risk of diabetic kidney disease” as well as help overweight individuals lose weight. The mineral also raises good cholesterol (HDL) levels and protects the heart.
Benfotiamine: In another newsletter, Douglas touted the benefits of benfotiamine, “a synthetic derivative of ordinary vitamin B1, a.k.a., thiamine,” for diabetics. “While thiamine is water soluble, benfotiamine is fat soluble—and that allows your body to absorb it five times more efficiently. Benfotiamine takes excess blood sugar and puts it to work—restoring balance…” Plus, he says, this B1 derivative reverses the damage caused by high blood sugar, including kidney and nerve damage.
Magnesium: Dr. Andrew Myers in a Health is Wealth “Health Alert” titled “Optimal Magnesium and the Reduction of Diabetes Risks,” wrote that “Supplements of magnesium for six months improved two out of three measures of insulin sensitivity, compared with placebo, while blood sugar levels, measured as fasting levels of glucose in the blood, improved by about 7 percent, report the researchers.”
Vitamin D3: Dr. Joseph Mercola wrote in one of his November Mercola.com newsletters that optimizing vitamin D levels can help improve type 2 diabetes. He also says it’s important for pregnant women to have adequate vitamin D to prevent type 1 diabetes in their babies and that infants “receive the appropriate amounts of vitamin D in their early years for these same reasons.”
Mercola says the ideal way to get enough vitamin D is by exposing a large amount of skin to sunshine, which is not an exciting idea at this time of year for most people. For those who are sunshine deprived, he suggests ingesting oral D3. “Maintaining your vitamin D levels around 60-80 ng/ml can significantly help control your blood sugar.”
Cinnamon: You’ve also heard about the benefits of cinnamon for blood sugar control. Now there’s a supplement called Cinnulin PF, a potent extract from cinnamon. “Cinnulin PF helps metabolic syndrome factors by supporting healthy glucose levels, body composition and blood pressure in healthy individuals.” (http://cinnulin.com/more_info.html)
Red wine: Douglas reports that “Lab-dish tests have found that the polyphenols in red wine behave much like the drug Avandia, at least on a microscopic level, which could help explain why it’s so great for blood sugar control. And unlike Avandia, a glass or two of red wine has never killed anyone.”
Put your feet up and have a glass of wine (red, of course)! Becky