Tag: Diabetes Herbal Remedies

What are the benefits of Cinnamon in Diabetes?

Introduction

Cinnamon is an aromatic, very delicious spice derived from the inner bark of Cinnamomum tree. The spice has been used in medicines since ages. It has also been used as a food preservative in older times. Cinnamon lends a complex, sweet flavor without the spike in blood sugar level. The compound cinnamaldehyde is responsible for its health benefits. According to Ayurveda, Cinnamon is an excellent herb to pacify Kapha and balance Vata and Pitta. It is known as twak in Sanskrit and daalchini in Hindi.

Treatment of Diabetes in Ayurveda

What are the Types of Cinnamon?

There are four types of Cinnamon being commercially used. These include Ceylon, Cassia, Saigon and Korintje but most popular are

  • Ceylon and Cassia. Ceylon Cinnamon is grown in South America, Southeast Asia and West Indies.
  • Cassia Cinnamon is grown in Central America, China and Indonesia.
  • Ceylon Cinnamon is considered true or Mexican cinnamon. They are soft and brittle and are rolled tightly.

Cinnamon contains phytochemical that have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, anticancer and anti-diabetic properties.

Is Cinnamon Good For Diabetes?

  • Cinnamon is a miraculous herb in preventing and fighting diabetes (Type 2 only where pancreas still produce insulin but cells become resistant to it).
  • Treatment for diabetics is a lifelong blood sugar monitoring, healthy eating, regular exercise and at times insulin therapy.
  • The key hormone Insulin regulates metabolism and energy use. It also transports blood sugar from the blood stream to our cells. When an individual’s cells become resistant to the effects of Insulin, it leads to Type 2 diabetes.

How Cinnamon Works?

  • Cinnamon works wonder in reducing insulin resistance naturally and gradually and thus helps the hormone to do its job smoothly. The high levels of blood sugar in diabetic patients
  • (Type 2 diabetes) leads to the formation of harmful substances called Advanced Glycation End products (AGE). This leads to cellular damage. Cinnamon has compounds like epicatechin, catechin and procyanindin B2 that inhibits the formation of AGEs and thus prevents further damage to the cells.
  • Cinnamon stimulates the release of insulin from pancreatic cells and improves the activity of insulin receptors along with improving the glucose uptake by the cells.

Health Benefits of Cinnamon

How to use

  • Type 2 diabetes people are advised to take at least 1 gram of cinnamon daily. It could be sprinkled on foods for added flavor or boil some cinnamon sticks in water for 20 minutes and then let it cool for some time as while cooling, the cinnamon releases all its magical compounds.
  • The water will turn golden red. The tea needs to be strained and enjoyed warm. One may also mix 3 spoons of cinnamon powder to one liter of water and heat it for 20 minutes. Strain and consume the mixture daily.

Manage Blood Sugar Levels

  • Cinnamon has the ability of lowering blood sugar levels naturally. It has anti diabetic properties. It decreases the amount of glucose that enters the bloodstream after a meal. It interferes with the digestive enzymes which slows the breakdown of carbohydrates in the digestive tract.
  • It blocks certain enzymes called alanines which allow glucose to be absorbed by blood. These enzymes or biological catalysts break down the complex carbohydrates into glucose, so when they are blocked or inhibited, the after-meal glucose level (postprandial) gets reduced naturally.
  • A compound in cinnamon called Methylhydroxychalcone Polymer (MHCP) act on cells by mimicking insulin, which improves glucose uptake by cells. It has been shown that consuming Cinnamon can lower the fasting blood sugar levels 20 %.

Useful in cholesterol

  • Cinnamon also reduces the plasma glucose levels, bad cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides and increases good cholesterol (HDL).

Stress Management

  • The antioxidant properties of cinnamon help to reduce the oxidative stress on the diabetic patient’s body which happens due to side effects of anti-diabetic medicines being taken by the patients over long period of time.
Stress Management

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Useful in Erectile Dysfunction

  • Along with controlling diabetes, this spice supports sexual function in males and improves erectile dysfunction. It is one of the best remedies for erectile dysfunction in diabetic patients. The cinnamon oil is diluted with sesame oil and applied over the penis for 10 minutes before the bath to improve blood circulation and for longer erections.

Erectile Dysfunction

Ceylon cinnamon contains less quantities of a compound called coumarin so it is the best type of cinnamon for diabetic patients.

Useful in cardiovascular disease

  • One of the complications of diabetes is cardiovascular disease. This can be averted with regular intake of cinnamon in small quantities. The compound called Cinnamaldehyde stops the progress of hypertension or high blood pressure in Type 2 diabetic patients.

cardiovascular disease

Diabetic patients are prone to many metabolic problems due to their existing conditions or as a result of the medicines they are taking. They may get inflammation in various parts of their body. The anti-inflammatory effects of cinnamon helps to reduce pain and swelling.

Useful in Alzheimer’s disease

  • Cinnamon is also known to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease often associated with diabetes. The cinnamon extract decreases the ability of proteins like beta amyloid and tau to form plaques and tangles leading to Alzheimer (type 3 diabetes).

Treatment of Alzheimer's Disease

How to Take Cinnamon

  • It is advised to take Cinnamon after consulting with the physician as they can provide the best combination according to one’s body constitution. Cinnamon might interact with other medicines, so it should be taken carefully under doctor’s supervision.
  • Cinnamon can be added in food, smoothies and tea or may be taken as cinnamon essential oil in foods. Cinnamon goes well with peanut butter and sugar free jab on toast for diabetic patients. It can be added in oatmeal for a healthy breakfast.
  • One may take cassia cinnamon in capsule forms (500 mg) twice a day.

Dosage

  • The recommended and effective dose to be taken by a diabetic patient should not exceed 2 teaspoons a day.

Avoid Cinnamon

  • People with liver problems should avoid taking Cinnamon in excess. Some people are also allergic to the compound cinnamaldehyde which can cause mouth sores and breathing problems.
  • Consuming too much cinnamon may lead to a condition called hypoglycemia (Low blood glucose) wherein the person feel tired and dizzy. Eating dry cinnamon may permanently damage lungs.

Note

  • Cinnamon should be used by all in small quantities to prevent elevated glucose levels and blood lipid levels. A healthy diet with an active lifestyle helps to keep one fit and free from illness.

Health Benefits of Pistachio Nuts You Should Know

Overview

Pistachios (roasted without salt) are one of the most nutritious nuts, low calorie, oldest edible nuts, healthy for heart and the entire body as they improve blood, brain and skin health. Pistachio nuts belong to the Anacardiaceae family. A tree (Pisracia vera tree) takes almost 10 years to produce its first crop. Pistachios are seeds of the tree.

Health Benefits of Pistachio

Is Pistachios Are Good For You?

Pistachios are loaded with nutrients like carbohydrates, proteins, antioxidants, amino acids, fats and dietary fiber. They are rich in minerals like phosphorous, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, copper and sodium. Pistachio provides essential vitamins like Vitamin A, C, E and K along with folate, riboflavin, niacin, thiamin and pantothenic acid.

What are the Health Benefits of Pistachios?

Healthy Heart

Improve Heart Health

  • Pistachios are one of the most Vitamin B6 rich foods, which is important for formation of hemoglobin and blood sugar regulation. Getting Vitamin B6 in diet helps to improve cardiovascular health. Pistachios can lower bad cholesterol and cut the risk of coronary heart disease.
  • They lower the levels of lipids and lipoproteins which are the risk factors for heart disease. The omega 3 fatty acids present in serving of pistachios can help lower blood pressure and protect against abnormal heart beat.
  • The high amount of Vitamin B6 also helps in building amino acids essential in transmitting nerve impulses and thus helps in maintaining a healthy nervous system.
  • Pistachios are a great source of amino acid L arginine which is converted to nitric oxide in the body. Nitric oxide plays an important role in vasodilation (widening or dilating of blood vessels). Thus, these nuts enhance the blood flow and manage the blood pressure naturally.

Boost Fertility

  • Proper blood flow is needed for body functions like erectile function. Along with this, Pistachios act as an aphrodisiac and is found to improve sex drive in men and boost fertility.

Sources of Vitamin E

Source of Vitamin E

  • Pistachios are amazing source of Vitamin E which is needed to prevent age related cognitive decline.
  • Pistachios are able to stimulate brain frequencies better than other nuts.
  • Thus, they help to enhance learning and information retention.
  • The oil from the pistachio nut is useful in fighting brain

Premature Aging

  • Inflammation and preserving the essential fatty acids in the brain. The vitamin E in pistachios protects the skin from the damage caused by Ultra violet rays and delays the signs of premature aging.

Weight loss Management

Weight loss Management

  • Pistachios are very helpful with weight management as they are low in calories, high in proteins.
  • They have low saturated fats and high unsaturated fats which is needed for weight management. The fiber in them helps to keep one full for longer periods.
  • Consuming pistachios can keep inches off the waist over time.
  • Pistachios have beneficial effects on triglycerides too.
  • The fat content in them is not fully absorbed by the body.
  • They are the healthiest nuts to be used as a snack in order to lose weight.
  • Eating in shell pistachios also leads to mindful eating as one needs to slowly remove the shell and eat the nuts.

Enhance Gut Health

  • Pistachios promotes healthy gut bacteria as they are high in fiber.
  • They help in smooth digestion of the food and prevents constipation.
  • Consuming pistachios increases the number of butyrate producing bacteria in the gut.
  • Feeding the good bacteria helps them multiply and crowd out the harmful bacteria.
  • The fiber in pistachios is digested by the food bacteria in the stomach which then ferments this fiber and produce short chain fatty acids. This helps in reducing risk of developing digestive disorders, colon cancers and heart diseases.

Helpful in Diabetes

  • Pistachios are known to increase the levels of peptide 1 hormone that regulates glucose levels in diabetes. The nuts have positive effects on glycemic control, blood pressure, inflammation and obesity in diabetic patients. Intake of pistachios lowers the glucose and insulin levels. They have low glycemic index which means they do not cause a large spike in the blood sugar.

Improve Vision Health

  • Pistachios are a rich source of antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin which are essential for healthy eyes. These antioxidants are found in human retina and taking care of eyes and prevents vision issues.
  • Consuming Pistachios regularly reduces the chances of age-related Macular Degeneration and cataracts. They also protect the eyes against damage caused by blue light. Pistachios also contain zinc which is a vital nutrient for healthy eyes.

Boost Immunity

  • The zinc and Vitamin B6 in Pistachios also boost the immunity and protects the body against various infections.

Pistachios Combat Inflammation

Pistachios Combat Inflammation

  • Pistachios combat inflammation as they are rich in monounsaturated fats and proteins which helps in fighting inflammation for Arthritis patients and also builds strength.
  • The presence of Vitamin A, E and anti-inflammatory properties in pistachios helps in reducing inflammation in any part of the body.

Increase Estrogen Levels

  • Pistachios are very helpful for females as they contain the highest number of phytoestrogens. They can increase the estrogen levels leading to regulated menstrual cycles.
  • They are also good source of nutrition during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Fight Premature Aging

  • These nuts are very useful for skin and hair. The copper in Pistachios aids the production of elastin which treats sagging skin and prevents the formation of wrinkles.
  • The nuts also help in eliminating dryness from the skin. The saturated fats in these nuts acts as a good carrier or base oil for massage therapies and aromatherapies.

Prevent Anemia

  • The high copper content in Pistachios helps in the higher iron absorption in the body from various food sources. Thus, the intake of these nuts helps prevent conditions like anemia.
  • Pistachios have high ratio of essential amino acids, the building blocks of protein making it exceptionally beneficial for vegetarians.

How to Eat

  • Pistachios are very popular in ice creams and desserts. They are prized high for their unique, slightly sweet flavor. They can be eaten as a snack or on top of a salad and mixed in baked goods for additional flavor.
  • These are delicious, versatile and fun to eat nuts. Pistachios in diet are a great way to improve overall health. It is important to stick to plain, unsalted pistachio nuts in their shells and avoid eating more than one ounce a day. Pistachios must be stored in airtight containers in cool and dry places to last longer.