Half a Teaspoon of This Each Day Can Optimize Cholesterol Levels...

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A 12-week London
study was recently conducted involving 58 type 2 diabetics with
hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) levels over 7 percent. Hemoglobin A1c is
a marker for long-term glycemic control in diabetics.

After 12 weeks
on 2g of cinnamon per day, study subjects had significantly lower
HbA1c levels, as well as significantly reduced blood pressures (systolic,
SBP and diastolic, DBP).

The researchers'
conclusion:

u201CIntake of
2g of cinnamon for 12 weeks significantly reduces the HbA1c, SBP
and DBP among poorly controlled type 2 diabetes patients. Cinnamon
supplementation could be considered as an additional dietary supplement
option to regulate blood glucose and blood pressure levels along
with conventional medications to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus.u201D

In related
news, a new study out of the University of North Carolina at Chapel
Hill points to a connection between magnesium in the diet and lowered
risk of diabetes.

According to
Reuters:

u201CIt’s plausible
that magnesium could influence diabetes risk because the mineral
is needed for the proper functioning of several enzymes that help
the body process glucose.u201D

Researchers
studied magnesium intake and diabetes risk in about 4,500 men and
women aged 18 to 30. None of the participants were diabetic at the
start of the study.

Over the ensuing
20 years, 330 of the test subjects developed diabetes. The people
with the highest magnesium intake — about 200 milligrams for every
1,000 calories consumed — were almost 50 percent less likely to
develop diabetes than men and women who consumed about 100 milligrams
per 1,000 calories.

The study also
revealed that as magnesium intake increased, inflammation levels
decreased, as did insulin resistance.

IMPORTANT
NOTE: Reuters reports one wildly inaccurate conclusion:
that consuming whole grains (which are high in magnesium) is associated
with lower diabetes risk.

This is simply
not true.

If you're looking
for ways to increase the magnesium in your diet, avoid grains and
opt for healthier choices like avocados, almonds, certain types
of beans and peas.

Sources:

Dr. Mercola’s
Comments:

As I discussed
in yesterday’s article on the
insanity of Avandia
, drugs are not the answer for type 2 diabetes.
In that article, I described the natural and most effective way
to address type 2 diabetes. If you haven’t already read this article
I would strongly encourage you to do so.

The two reports
above are related in the sense that they demonstrate the power of
natural therapies — as opposed to drugs – to combat this epidemic
problem.

However, like
drugs, supplements such as cinnamon or magnesium should not be misconstrued
as cures. They are safer alternatives than drugs, but you cannot
properly address your diabetes if you still maintain a sedentary
lifestyle and a poor diet – with or without helpful supplements.

How Cinnamon
Can Benefit Diabetics

Researchers
have investigated the “insulin-like” effects of cinnamon for a number
of years now, and as the latest study in Diabetic Medicine shows,
cinnamon keeps proving it’s a viable contender in the fight against
diabetes.

Among this
spice’s most impressive health benefits is its impact on blood sugar
and ability to improve glucose control.

For example,
just half a teaspoon of cinnamon a day has
previously been shown
to significantly reduce blood sugar levels,
triglycerides, LDL (bad) cholesterol, and total cholesterol levels
in people with type 2 diabetes.

Another study
found that the spice increased glucose metabolism by about 20 times,
which would significantly improve your ability
to regulate blood sugar
. Cinnamon has even previously been indicated
as a potential insulin substitute for those with type 2 diabetes
due to a bioactive component with “insulin-like” effects.

Interestingly,
cinnamon lowers your blood sugar by acting on several different
levels.

It slows the
emptying of your stomach to reduce sharp rises in blood sugar following
meals, and improves the effectiveness, or sensitivity, of insulin.

It also enhances
your antioxidant defenses. A
study published last year stated
that “polyphenols from cinnamon
could be of special interest in people that are overweight with
impaired fasting glucose since they might act both as insulin sensitizers
and antioxidants.”

Yet another
bioflavanoid compound called proanthocyanidin may alter the activity
of insulin signaling in your fat cells.

Researchers
have suggested people with diabetes may see improvements by adding
1/4–1 teaspoon of cinnamon to their food, and I see no reason
not to give this a try if you enjoy cinnamon (along with doing the
other essentials
to improve diabetes
, including eliminating fructose and grains
from your diet and exercising daily).

Other health
benefits of cinnamon include:

  • Supporting
    digestive function
  • Relieving
    congestion
  • Relieving
    pain and stiffness of muscles and joints
  • Anti-inflammatory
    compounds that may relieve arthritis
  • Helping
    to prevent urinary tract infections, tooth decay and gum disease
  • Relieves
    menstrual discomfort
  • Blood-thinning
    compounds that stimulate circulation

Clearly, adding
ample amounts of cinnamon to your diet is an incredibly inexpensive
and great tasting tool for diabetics, and the likelihood of this
food causing any long-term complications is very small.

Just remember
that unless you’re adding it to a proper diet — high in vegetables
and extremely low in fructose and grains – you likely will
not experience any benefit whatsoever.

Whole Grains
Do NOT Lower Your Diabetes Risk!

Reuters
makes a grave mistake when claiming that “the results may explain
in part why consuming whole grains, which are rich in magnesium,
is associated with lower diabetes risk.”

The
results they’re talking about
is that people who consumed the
highest amounts of magnesium, from foods and vitamin supplements,
were half as likely to become diabetics over two decades as those
who consumed the least amount of magnesium, according
to a recent study.

According to
the researchers, magnesium may decrease your diabetes risk because
magnesium is required for the proper functioning of enzymes involved
in glucose processing.

This has nothing
to do with whole grains, and does not support the claim that whole
grains are good for diabetics.

In fact, if
you’re diabetic or want to avoid becoming diabetic, then grains
— including whole grains – are at the TOP of the list of foods
to AVOID, right after fructose and other sugars.

Why?

Because just
like sugar, grains typically are a primary cause of insulin insensitivity,
which is at the root of diabetes.

Healthful
Sources of Magnesium

As for magnesium,
the
study found
that those who consumed about 200 mg of magnesium
for every 1,000 calories consumed were 47 percent less likely to
develop insulin resistance and diabetes, compared to those who consumed
half that amount of magnesium.

In addition,
the researchers also discovered that as magnesium levels rose, markers
of inflammation decreased.

Magnesium serves
many important metabolic functions in your body, but if you want
to increase the magnesium in your diet, please stay away from grains
and opt for healthier choices, such as:

  • Avocados
  • Almonds
  • Green vegetables,
    such as spinach
  • Raw broccoli
  • Black beans
  • Peas

Other Great
Anti-Diabetic Foods

 

Aside from
cinnamon and magnesium-rich fare, other foods shown to be particularly
beneficial for diabetics include:

For more information
about diabetes, and the full guidelines for preventing and treating
diabetes, please see this link
.

October
13, 2010

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