Diabetes is a disease in which the body’s ability to produce or respond to the hormone insulin is impaired. Diabetes is a disease that cannot be fully treated but it can only be managed through regular insulin shots, stringent dieting and watching what one eats coupled with regular exercise. However, some studies have shown that common everyday plants may have some anti-diabetes properties and could help in the management of the condition and the overall improvement of the quality of life of diabetes patients. Here are some of those natural organic plants.
- Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera, probably the most common plant herb in Kenya, is a product of the succulent aloe vera plant which has been used in herbal medicine for thousands of years due to its rejuvenating and soothing properties. The leaves of the Aloe Vera plant contain a clear gel substance that has been used in skin care products, again due to its rejuvenating properties. The clear gel from the aloe vera plant has also been known to have anti-diabetes properties, with research showing that the intake of aloe vera juice does actually help in improving blood glucose levels and may, therefore, be useful in treating people with diabetes. Aloe vera has also been known to reduce blood lipids (fat) levels and to decrease swelling and faster healing of wounds, especially leg wounds and ulcers which are common complications of diabetes. Please note that not all types of Aloe vera are for drinking. Find out which types can be taken orally and which ones you can apply.
Garlic, popularly known locally as saumu, is also another plant that helps fight diabetes. Several research studies have shown that among the many health benefits of eating garlic, it is known to reduce insulin resistance, especially in patients with type 2 diabetes. It does through one of its compounds, volatile sulfur, that is contained within it. Garlic has also been used to manage blood sugar levels. Therefore, regular consumption of garlic is therefore advised for patients with type 2 diabetes.
Arguably one of the world’s most common spices, cinnamon is used by a large population of the world due to its unique flavour. It is added as a spice in everyday foods, used in baking and even added to beverages. Apart though from its zingy flavour, cinnamon has numerous health benefits to human health. Like garlic, it is recommended for type 2 diabetes patients because of its low calories composition and because it has also been known to lower resistance to insulin in type 2 diabetic patients.
Studies have shown that consuming sage on an empty stomach can help reduce blood sugar levels significantly. Sage has also been known to boost insulin secretion and activity, which helps to lower blood sugar levels to manage diabetes, especially in its type 2 form. Sage also improves liver function and thus boosts the body’s immunity. The most common way of sage consumption is through the form of tea.
Ginger is another plant that helps fight diabetes. Ginger, like garlic, has been used for centuries as a remedy for illnesses and is one of the world’s most popular spices. According to researchers from the University of Sydney, Australia, ginger was found to increase uptake of glucose into muscle cells without the use of insulin and thus help in the management of high blood sugar levels. Ginger has also been known to boost the secretion levels of insulin and also increase insulin sensitivity and reduce resistance.
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