Herbs for Diabetes Type 2 – Fenugreek, Bitter Melon, Ginseng, Green Tea & More!
Clinical Herbalist Reviewed on January 6, 2011 by Paulina Nelega, RH
In this morning’s post on diabetes type 2, we talked a bit about the importance of diet and exercise. Some of my favorite herbs for helping to manage diabetes type 2 include Cinnamon, Fenugreek, Bitter Melon, Gymnema, Ginseng, Green tea, Devil’s Club (not to be confused with Devil’s Claw), Goat’s Rue, and Burdock.
Fenugreek tea is a classic blood sugar remedy. You can make an infusion of the seeds by steeping them in hot water for 20 minutes before drinking (1-2 cups a day). Ginseng is another great blood sugar balancer – if you have high blood pressure, I recommend the North American variety (Panax quinquefolium) rather than Asian (Panax ginseng), as the latter can be overly-stimulating. They’re both very effective.
Cinnamon has attracted a lot of attention the last while, with studies showing that it can reduce fasting blood glucose levels by almost 30%. Half to 1 teaspoon a day can do the trick!
If you’re on blood sugar medication, let your doctor know before you use therapeutic levels of cinnamon, or any herbs. There can be an additive effect which may cause your blood sugar to drop too low, so your doctor may wish to monitor (and perhaps reduce) your medication.
You can make some delicious blood sugar-balancing dishes with foods like plantain and bitter melon. Adding lots of garlic and onions to your cooking will help your blood sugar, too!
Thanks again to our Fan, Carl, for his timely question about diabetes type 2: November is Diabetes Awareness Month!
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Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan