The Truth About Cinnamon And Diabetes
Cinnamon has been heralded as possibly nature’s miracle cure for diabetes and some think it could substitute for insulin.
In this article, we take a look at the truth about cinnamon & diabetes!!
By Trevor Emdon
What IS Cinnamon?
The ancient Chinese used it for a variety of purposes. The Egyptians used it in the embalming process in their mummification rituals. Cinnamon was a prized commodity in the Roman Empire and was worth its weight it gold. In the medieval time period it was used extensively for treating throat related ailments.
In recent times it has again come to the limelight for its supposed health benefits. Scientists and researchers have been looking for blood sugar stabilizing agents and cinnamon is being considered. A small quantity taken every day has shown great results in reducing blood sugar, bad cholesterol, triglycerides and overall cholesterol levels in type 2 diabetic patients.
But such studies have triggered the misconception that Cinnamon is a cure for diabetes.
The Good News About Cinnamon And Blood Sugar
Cinnamon is at best a supplement, to be consumed in addition to maintaining healthy food habits and engaging in certain amount of physical activity. A person with a sedentary lifestyle should not expect its consumption to bring about drastic changes in his condition.
Cinnamon can help increase the glucose metabolism in your body by as much as twenty times. Also it has been found to have effects similar to insulin due to a certain bioactive substance, thus making it a great candidate for substituting insulin.
It has also proved effective in slowing the emptying of the stomach thus helping regulate and control large spikes in blood sugar level. Studies have shown that Polyphenols found in it can help enhance a person’s antioxidant defenses.
Some other health benefits include: promoting digestive function, providing relief during urinary tract infections, reducing menstrual pain, helping smooth bowel movement, reducing inflammation and enhancing blood circulation. Cinnamon is a very cheap supplement and works best if combined with a low sugar and fructose diet.
Many different studies have shown the positive effects of including cinnamon in your diet.
Science’s View Of Cinnamon & Diabetes
According to a study published in 2003 in the Diabetes Care Journal, cinnamon was found to be very effective in treating Diabetic patients. On an average the fasting glucose reduced by 18 percent, LDL cholesterol by 7 percent, triglycerides by 23 percent and total cholesterol by 12 percent in subjects.
But these finding were not enough to conclusively establish Cinnamon as a substitute to insulin.
To make matters worse, a study in Germany produced completely contradictory results.
Half the patients were administered placebo while the rest were given three grams of cinnamon for a period of four months. No discernible changes were observed in the cholesterol or triglyceride levels. A small dip of about 7 percent was observed in the fasting blood sugar levels.
Another study in 2006 was conducted among post-menopausal female patients suffering from type 2 diabetes. They received cinnamon supplements for six weeks and at the end of the study no significant changes were reported in cholesterol levels or glucose tolerance.
Other such studies have been published which have put in doubt the claim that Cinnamon is an effective substance to treat diabetics.
Some may argue that larger quantities of cinnamon may produce better results but sadly, all this remains mere speculation at this point.
Further studies are being conducted to better understand the link between this substance and diabetes. Cinnamon supplements seem safe, though people with liver ailments should take care, because excess cinnamon can interfere with liver function. It is essentially classified as a food product and not as medication. This frees manufactures from any accountability and hence they are not required to validate the effectiveness of their product.
Right now enough data is not available to know for sure the effectiveness of cinnamon for treatment of diabetes. But at the same time it has some proven medical benefits and there is no harm in trying cinnamon supplements. Care must be taken to maintain proper diet and keep sugar intake in check. Also it contains a certain substance called coumarin which is a natural blood thinner. It may interfere with the clotting ability of the body.
Cinnamon may work well with insulin and help increase insulin sensitivity. Also it can be effective in reducing the total fat percentage in body, leading to an increase in lean muscle mass. Cinnamon is rich in calcium, copper, iron, iodine, potassium, phosphorous, zinc and vitamins like A, C, B1 and B2.
Overall, if you want to try adding cinnamon to your diabetes control regime, go ahead and at the same time make sure you keep a careful eye on your blood sugar levels. Whatever you do, sadly you can’t rely on it to put diabetes back in its place.
About the author:
Trevor Emdon is a British success coach, author, and publisher of self help material who one day woke up to realise he was happy, in love & successful. He blends psychotherapy & metaphysics to create his popular success, happiness & personal fulfillment programs. He firmly believes each of us can achieve our dreams – what else would life be for?
He was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 2011. He has published a report, “Reversing Diabetes – Essential Facts You Must Know” which you can obtain free of charge here: http://wizardofwisdom.com/reversing-diabetes/