Type 2 diabetes is increasingly common. According to the American Diabetes Association, 9.4 percent of Americans have diabetes. Most of those individuals have type 2 diabetes, in which the cells stop responding appropriately to insulin. This metabolic disorder may be preventable in some cases, however. One reader wondered whether cinnamon supplements would help avert diabetes.
How to Avert Diabetes:
Q. Can you recommend a natural alternative to help reduce blood sugar levels? At my last lab test, my fasting blood sugar was 119, though it should be under 100.
The doctor wants to test my HbA1c, but I would first like to try to bring down my sugar level naturally. I do not eat a lot of sugar or desserts. I do however, eat white pastas and white rice, which I know then turns to sugar. Do you think cinnamon bark would help? Any ideas would be appreciated.
A. Your recent fasting blood sugar result was a wake-up call. There are a number of tactics you might want to try before the test for HbA1c, which is a measure of blood sugar over several weeks rather than at a moment in time.
How Cinnamon Can Help Avert Diabetes:
In addition to adding cinnamon to your daily diet (preferably in a water-based extract), you may want to reduce your reliance on pasta and rice. Vegetables such as cauliflower or squash might be reasonable substitutes that wouldn’t raise blood sugar much.
Think About Vinegar:
You might also want to finish your meal with salad dressed with vinaigrette. Vinegar helps to prevent blood sugar spikes after eating (Shishehbor, Mansoori & Shirani, Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice, May 2017).
You will find details on these and many other approaches in our Guide to Managing Diabetes. You will also find good advice on how to avert diabetes naturally, particularly with exercise, in our podcast, How to Prevent Diabetes by Changing Your Life.