Diabetes Nutritional Supplements

Diabetes Nutritional Supplements are a natural result of the needs of millions of people who suffer from this ailment. In this article we look into this response....

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Diabetes is chronic degenerative disorder that affects millions of people around the world. Although medications, diet and exercise are proven ways to control it, health food manufacturers are offering nutritional supplements for diabetics as adjunct mode of therapy. The question in the minds of many individuals remains: Are the claims made by the manufacturers in support of these products true?

Composite of Ingredients

As with all nutritional supplements, the ingredients can include a composite of ingredients including vitamins, minerals and antioxidants on one hand and herbs and plants on the other hand. The main purpose of these ingredients is to provide health benefits in controlling the symptoms of diabetes especially the blood sugar levels.

Its implication is that these nutritional supplements are only designed as adjunct therapy for prescribed medications. Keep in mind that the primary role of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants is to maintain good physical and mental health. Diabetes control via medications requires especially formulated substances like insulin to achieve the desired results.

Positive Side

At present, the scientific evidence for diabetes nutritional supplements is still insufficient to establish a strong link between their claimed benefits and actual results. However, ongoing studies point to these three minerals with potential benefits for diabetes control:

  • Chromium appears to lower blood sugar levels as well as aid in weight loss, the latter of which is necessary in obese diabetics.

  • Magnesium can also help in better insulin response especially in people with diabetes complications.

  • Vanadium also appears to increase insulin sensitivity.

  • Alpha-lipoic acid may improve insulin response while easing the symptoms of nerve pain, numbness and burning sensations common in diabetics.

You will also find many diabetes nutritional supplements with herbs and plants like bitter melon, prickly pear cactus, fenugreek, ginseng and bilberry. These herbs are still being studied but the results are promising, indeed, which is good news to the millions of diabetics who find their medication bills soaring to the sky.

Negative Side

Unfortunately, these nutritional supplements also have their negative sides - interference and interactions with your existing medications. Just because the ingredients are vitamins, minerals and antioxidants do not necessarily mean that all of these nutrients are good for your diabetic body. Your medications may well have adverse interactions with these nutrients and, thus, you will be at a disadvantage because of the former's lesser efficacy.

And then there's also the matter of many diabetes nutritional supplements not being what these are marketed by the manufacturers to be. Even when you have the habit of reading the nutritional supplements information, manufacturers can choose to be dishonest with the quantity and quality of ingredients.

So, should you take nutritional supplements for diabetes control? The safest answer is to ask your doctor first for medical advice. You will then be advised about the safety and efficacy of these supplements where your existing medications, type of diabetes and health requirements are concerned.

Ultimately, your choice to take or not to take diabetes nutritional supplements will depend on how well these products work in conjunction with your medications and lifestyle. Just remember that supplements must never take the place of medications when you have a serious disorder such as diabetes.

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