What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is generally considered a disease rather than a disorder. It is a chronic medical condition that affects the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar levels properly. In diabetes, the body either doesn’t produce enough insulin (a hormone that regulates blood sugar) or doesn’t effectively use the insulin it produces. This results in elevated glucose (sugar) levels in the blood, which can lead to various health complications if not properly managed. There are various home remedies for diabetes. It is mainly characterized by high blood sugar levels and can have long-term effects on multiple organ systems, including the cardiovascular system, kidneys, eyes, and nervous system. It requires ongoing management and treatment to maintain optimal blood sugar control and minimize the risk of complications.
Types of Diabetes
There are three main types of diabetes:
- Type 1 Diabetes: In this autoimmune disease, the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. People with type 1 diabetes require lifelong insulin injections or the use of an insulin pump to manage their blood sugar levels.
- Type 2 Diabetes: This is the most common form of diabetes, accounting for the majority of cases. Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body becomes resistant to the effects of insulin or doesn’t produce enough insulin to maintain normal blood sugar levels. It is often associated with lifestyle factors such as obesity, sedentary behavior, and poor dietary choices. Treatment may involve lifestyle changes, oral medications, and, in some cases, insulin therapy.
- Gestational Diabetes: This type of diabetes occurs during pregnancy in women who are not previously diagnosed with diabetes. It usually resolves after childbirth, but women who have had gestational diabetes have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life.
Symptoms of Diabetes
Depending on the kind of diabetes and the person, the symptoms of diabetes might vary. Here are common symptoms of diabetes:
- Frequent Urination (Polyuria): Increased urination is often one of the earliest signs of diabetes.
- Excessive Thirst (Polydipsia): Due to increased urination, individuals with diabetes may experience intense thirst and a persistent need to drink more fluids.
- Unexplained Weight Loss: Individuals with diabetes may experience unexplained weight loss, despite increased hunger and food intake.
- Fatigue and Weakness: Feeling tired and fatigued is a common symptom of diabetes. The body’s inability to effectively utilize glucose can result in a lack of energy.
- Increased Hunger (Polyphagia): Diabetes can cause increased hunger and a constant feeling of hunger, as the body’s cells are not receiving adequate glucose for energy.
- Blurred Vision: High blood sugar levels, causing vision to become blurry.
- Slow Wound Healing: Diabetes can impair the body’s ability to heal wounds and cuts. Sores or cuts may take longer to heal or become infected more easily.
- Recurring Infections: Individuals with diabetes are more susceptible to infections, including urinary tract infections, skin infections, and yeast infections.
- Tingling or Numbness: Prolonged high blood sugar levels can damage nerves, resulting in tingling or numbness, usually starting in the hands and feet.
- Irritability and Mood Changes: Fluctuating blood sugar levels can affect mood, causing irritability, anxiety, or even depression.
Causes of diabetes
- Autoimmune Factors: Type 1 diabetes occurs due to an autoimmune disease.
- Insulin Resistance: Type 2 diabetes is primarily causes by a combination of insulin resistance and inadequate insulin production.
- Genetic Factors: There is a genetic predisposition to developing type 2 diabetes. Lifestyle Factors: Lifestyle choices play a significant role in type 2 diabetes. Factors such as obesity, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet, and smoking contribute to the development of insulin resistance and impaired insulin production.
- Hormonal Changes: During pregnancy, hormonal changes can lead to insulin resistance, particularly in the later stages of pregnancy. This can result in elevated blood sugar levels and the development of gestational diabetes.
Natural Home Remedies For Diabetes
Herbal or medicinal plants used as home remedies for diabetes
Before the 1922 discovery of insulin, dietary modifications, including the use of conventional plant remedies, were the mainstay of diabetic treatment. Various traditional plants uses in different cultures to manage diabetes symptoms. These plants were traditionally have medicinal properties that helped regulate blood sugar levels.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes the value of traditional plant treatments for diabetes and has recommended their use. These recommendations are commonly based on the accumulated knowledge and historical use of such plants in various traditional medicinal systems. Always consult with a healthcare professional before using any natural remedies. They can provide personal advice and guidance based on your specific health condition.
Plants that have been commonly associated with diabetes treatment:
Bitter Melon (Momordica charantia): Bitter melon, also known as bitter gourd, has blood sugar-lowering properties. You can consume bitter melon as a vegetable, juice, or in supplement form after consulting with your healthcare provider. It contains compounds that may help lower blood sugar levels by increasing insulin secretion and improving insulin sensitivity.
Cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum): Studies suggest that cinnamon is one of the home remedies for diabetes. It may improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar levels. Some research suggests that cinnamon may help improve insulin sensitivity and reduce fasting blood sugar levels.
Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum): Fenugreek seeds were traditionally used to manage diabetes. They contain soluble fiber and compounds that may help lower blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity.
Gymnema Sylvestre: Gymnema sylvestre is an herb native to India that has been traditionally used to treat diabetes. By lowering sugar cravings and enhancing insulin production, it seems to have qualities that assist in managing blood sugar levels.
Aloe Vera: Aloe vera gel is commonly used for skin conditions, but it may also have benefits for diabetes management. Some studies suggest that aloe vera gel or juice may help lower fasting blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity.
Ginseng: Various types of ginseng, such as American ginseng and Asian ginseng, have been also studied for their potential antidiabetic effects. Ginseng may help improve blood sugar control and increase insulin sensitivity.
Apple (Apple Cider Vinegar): Consuming diluted apple cider vinegar before meals may help lower post-meal blood sugar levels. Mix one to two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water and drink it before meals
Other Home Remedies for Diabetes
Exercise comes under best home remedies for diabetes. It improves insulin sensitivity and manages blood sugar levels. Engage in aerobic exercises like walking, cycling, or swimming for at least 30 minutes most days of the week.
Focus on a well-balanced diet rich in whole foods, including fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. Although, Limit your intake of sugary foods, processed carbohydrates, and unhealthy fats.
Drinking enough water helps regulate blood sugar levels and promotes overall health. Aim to drink at least 8 cups (64 ounces) of water per day, or adjust according to your needs.
High-stress levels can impact blood sugar levels. Engage in stress-reducing activities such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, yoga, or engaging hobbies.