Sunday, April 27, 2014

Cinnamon and Diabetes

For every disease, known to mankind there is someone who says there is a natural treatment for it. These treatments range from very benign to absolutely bizarre. That however does not mean there is never a natural treatment for an ailment. Cinnamon and diabetes are a prime example of this, but how does it work and is it safe?
Diabetes
When you have diabetes, you have a problem with insulin and sugar. Either your pancreas is not producing enough insulin as in type one diabetes or the cells are not responsive to the insulin being produced, as can be the case with type two. There are more technical functions but this is the bottom line so to speak.
The treatments very between the two types of diabetes and their severity but the goal with both are to get adequate amounts of insulin and make sure the cells will accept the insulin in order to use the glucose or sugar in the blood stream for fuel.
Sometimes this is merely a matter of proper diet and exercise and in the case of type one insulin replacement therapy or medication. People have begun to question if there are any natural resources available to make treatment more effective, and surprisingly it looks like cinnamon may be the answer.
Since type one is based on a physical issue, the fact that the pancreas cannot produce enough insulin due to damage cinnamon therapy is not thought to be effective.
Cinnamon
It should be said up front that you need to always consult your physician before making any major changes especially when you have diabetes. That being said let's look at how cinnamon has been shown to affect sugar levels in the body.

Studies were done at the Human Nutrition Research Center of the US Department of agriculture to study the effects of over 49 plants on insulin mimicry. The one that showed the most promise was cinnamon.
The component in cinnamon that mimics insulin is methylhydroxychalcone polymer or MHCP. This is a water-soluble chemical compound that acts like insulin in the system, increasing sugar intake of the cells. Overall, the research looks promising but it should be noted that these were laboratory tests not conducted on humans.
That was remedy by a small clinical trial conducted in Pakistan with collaboration from Dr. Anderson, the physician who was part of the laboratory tests. They took 60 people with an average age of 52 years old with at least a seven-year history of diabetes. The group was spit with half receiving placebo over a 40-day period. The results were astounding!
Testing was done of fasting blood sugar levels at the beginning and every 20 days thereafter, including 20 days after the test was complete. All the subjects who received cinnamon saw a dramatic decrease in blood sugar levels and as an added bonus LDL cholesterol (the bad kind) as well. The placebo group showed no significant change. Blood glucose levels were reduced by 17-29% over a 40-day period, and remained at 16% at the 20-day follow up with no treatment.
Downside
Taking cinnamon in high doses can result in high levels of coumarin, a blood thinner. To avoid this it may be wise to use cinnamon sticks and steep them since coumarin is not water-soluble. However, you can also get cinnamon in a supplement form that contains no coumarin, which may be the better solution.By
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