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Does Cinnamon Help Manage Diabetes?

Does Cinnamon Help Manage Diabetes?

Does Cinnamon Help Manage Diabetes?

Cinnamon is a spice that has been used since ancient times for medicinal purposes. Recently, cinnamon has become a hot topic in diabetes research with conflicting results. The studies have been based on the idea that cinnamon may help to lower blood sugar.
How Cinnamon Might Lower Blood Sugar
Studies showing cinnamon as an effective diabetic treatment have proposed that cinnamon may have an insulin-like effect on cells -- triggering cells to take glucose out of the blood -- or that cinnamon may cause an increase in the activity of the transporter proteins that move glucose out of the bloodstream and into cells.
What the Research Says About Cinnamon and Blood Sugar
In the 2000s, several studies showed conflicting results, with some studies pointing to a hypoglycemic (blood sugar lowering) effect of cinnamon and others showing no significant effect. But more recent research suggests that cinnamon may indeed help to lower blood sugar. A 2013 review of 10 randomized control trials (the strongest kind of study for nutrition research) suggests that ingesting cinnamon does, in fact, lower fasting blood sugars, as well as total cholesterol.
How to Add Cinnamon to Your Diet
In the randomized controlled trials, people were given between 120 mg/day to 6 g/day for 4 to 18 weeks. That's the equivalent of between a small fraction of a teaspoon to two teaspoons per day. Adding a small amount of cinnamon to your daily diet--by sprinkling it on oatmeal, or using it to spice up a Mexican chili--can't hurt and may help.
But as with any supplement, check with your healthcare professional befor Continue reading

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Everyday Foods You Should Avoid With Type 2 Diabetes

Everyday Foods You Should Avoid With Type 2 Diabetes

One of my least favorite things is telling my patients what not to eat. I like to focus on the positives and educate my patients about the plethora of good foods that you can eat. But, from time to time, I find that some people are grateful when they are told that certain foods are "off limits." The types of foods that I may deem "off limits" might surprise you because what folks think is healthy may not always be the best choice.
Some of these foods are obvious because they contain added sugars - for instance, candies, cookies, soda, etc. Other foods of which you should avoid are foods rich in carbohydrate and/or sugar with limited fiber, and those that are lacking in nutrition (vitamins and minerals). Here are some examples:
Whole Wheat Bagels
Although this type of bagel is whole wheat, that doesn't mean it has fewer carbohydrates than it's white counterpart. One bagel is equivalent to eating about 4-6 slices of bread, which means it is very carbohydrate dense and can raise blood sugars. Bagels are also lacking in filling fiber and protein. Therefore, you are likely to be hungry a few hours after eating one which can negatively impact your blood sugars and weight.
To make this a healthier choice, decide to eat 1/2 (scooped out) and top it will a few scrambled egg whites and a vegetable of your choice. My favorite combination is 3 egg whites with 1/3 avocado, and 1/2 cup spinach - this adds protein, fiber, and healthy fat. Some studies suggest a larger, higher protein, higher fat breakfast may help to reduce HgbA1c.
Whole Wheat Pretzels
Whole wheat pretzels may seem like a Continue reading

How to Manage Gestational Diabetes

How to Manage Gestational Diabetes

I was pregnant with my first child when I went to my doctor's office for the routine screening for gestational diabetes at 28 weeks. I drank the sugar solution, and the nurse tested my blood sugar. I failed. Then I had to take the three-hour glucose tolerance test, but the nurse told me, "Your sugar isn't too high. I'm sure you'll pass." I didn't.
I remember feeling scared and wondering what this meant for me and my baby, but a diagnosis of gestational diabetes doesn't have to be scary. It just means some extra monitoring, changes to your diet and perhaps some additional medication to keep your blood sugar stable and your baby safe.
Gestational diabetes is quite common. Two to 10 percent of pregnant women develop the condition. According to the Mayo Clinic, the placenta, which connects your baby to your blood supply, produces high levels of various hormones. Almost all of them impair the action of insulin in your cells, which raises your blood sugar. As your baby grows, the placenta produces more and more insulin-blocking hormones. For most women, this isn't an issue because their pancreas just secretes enough insulin to keep their blood sugar stable. But when a woman has gestational diabetes, her pancreas can't keep up with the rise in blood sugar, which can affect the growth and welfare of her baby.
After my diagnosis, I wanted to know what I needed to do to keep my baby safe. My doctor first referred me to a nutritionist, who taught me how to adjust my diet in order to eat a specific number of carbohydrates to keep my blood sugar stable. I was also encouraged to exercise Continue reading

Can Diabetics Eat Black Beans?

Can Diabetics Eat Black Beans?

Diabetes, being complicated is a condition that is very difficult to manage. As such, when a person is suffering from diabetes, he or she is always conscious about what is to be included and what should not be included in the diet. In this article, we shall try to analyze the effects of adding black beans to a diabetic diet.
So, come and join in for the article “Can Diabetics Eat Black Beans?”
Facts About Black Beans
The following are some of the facts about black beans that you need to consider when you are making a decision whether or not you should include these in your regular diet:
One-third cup of black beans is known to contain around 75 units of calories, 5 grams of protein, 13 grams of carbohydrates, and 5 grams of fiber
Although black beans are known to be high in the total amount of carbohydrates that they contain, the low glycemic index ensures that these beans are healthy even if regularly consumed by the diabetes patients
Whenever you have one-half cup of beans if you are a diabetic patient, you should ensure that you have one source of protein and starch along with the same
Having known the important facts about black beans, let us see some of the benefits that regular consumption of these beans can have on the diabetes patients.
Benefits of Eating Black Beans for Diabetics
The following are some of the advantages that you can get if you are a patient with diabetes and eat black beans:
The black beans are low in the glycemic index which means that you can eat them safely with diabetes without the fear of your blood glucose rising
This also means that the Continue reading

5 Superfoods for Diabetes

5 Superfoods for Diabetes

Diabetes is a group of diseases characterized by high blood glucose levels that result from defects in the body’s ability to produce and/or use insulin. Diabetes plagues 25.8 million Americans have diabetes — 8.3 percent of the U.S. population, and approximately 90% of all cases of diabetes worldwide are type 2.
What Is Type 2 Diabetes?
People can develop type 2 diabetes at any age, though this type of diabetes develops most often in middle-aged and older people (although in recent years it has also become an epidemic with children). People who are overweight and inactive are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes as well as those who have poor diet habits (such as eating high amounts of sugar and/or low-fiber foods like white processed breads and sodas, which can make blood sugar spike and fall.
People with diabetes have problems dealing with sugar in the blood stream that comes from food. After eating, food is broken down into glucose, a sugar, which is carried by your blood to cells throughout your body for energy. To counterbalance excessively high blood sugar levels, the hormone insulin is secreted from the pancreas signalling the body to convert the excess blood glucose into fat instead — thus lowering blood sugar back to normal levels.
Type 2 diabetics however suffer from insulin resistance, which means cells do not respond to insulin properly, meaning your body needs more insulin to control blood sugar. At first, your pancreas does double duty by producing more insulin. But in time, your pancreas loses its ability to produce enough insulin and blood glucose le Continue reading

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