As a Type 2 Diabetic, I have been told that blood sugar spikes are the major cause of nerve cell deterioration. I have also been told that there are three substances that can effectively reduce these spikes - Berber-ine, Curcumin and Piperine. Does anyone have firsthand experience with any of these?
If obese, does weight loss, in general, lower blood sugar spikes? Although the precise mechanism by which blood sugar normalizes with weight loss has yet to be determined, in most cases, the answer is, "Yes". It's been observed that chronic low level "inflammation" is commonly associated with obesity and, potential treatment with anti-inflammatories may help some diabetics improve blood glucose control (though steroids give diabetics hell). The three compounds you list are recognized as natural anti-inflammatories found in common spices.
If you're suggesting, you know, definitively, that these 3 compounds represent "magic bullets" in reducing blood sugar spikes...and, that all we need to do is eat hot, spicy burritos to lower A1C...sign me up!
But, couldn't we have kept that little secret to ourselves? Diabetes medication is $10 billion business and I'm looking for work at the moment...
Dear Brunosbud, thanks for the lively and informative response. About those three substances, I wasn't suggesting, I was simply inquiring. I want to do every I can to slow the progression of my Type 2 condition. Also, I'm not obese by any stretch - I hit the gym six days a week.
I have used and have experience with both Berberine and Curcumin. I took Berberine specifically for its blood glucose lowering properties and took Curcumin more as a general anti-inflammatory and its protective benefits for nerve and brain tissue. I tried the Berberine on the advice of a Chinese herbalist who told me to take it in a cyclical manner: three weeks ON followed by one week OFF (then repeat). I followed that advice and did notice a slight lowering of my fasting BG levels over a period of 2 months. I then ordered $250 worth (wholesale price) of Berberine tablets directly from China and shared it with a number of friends who were struggling with BG issues. Then a bomb was dropped in my lap. One of the friends that I had given a large supply of Berberine to had told her physician that she was taking it for BG control. Her doctor happened to be an immigrant from China and said that it was used in her native land primarily as an antibiotic (for gastrointestinal issues) but only for short periods as prolonged use could cause liver damage! The doctor is fully trained Stateside as an M.D. so her remarks carried considerable weight. To make a long story short, I would up dumping my remaining Berberine inventory and discontinued it. That was five years ago. I have since investigated side effects of Berberine and, in hindsight, feel that the doctor was basing her opinion on old wives' tales (in China). I have not been able to find anything to substantiate her claim that Berberine causes liver damage. All of this is water over the dam since I am now well controlled with insulin (A1c has been 4.8-4.9 during the past two years). However, do some online browsing yourself on this matter and reach your own conclusions.
FYI, "progression" of diabetes is NOT normal, inevitable nor natural and it can be 100% arrested. However, the path to that result goes contrary to what most health professionals stubbornly cling to (but that's another story).
Very interesting information here! My doctor wants me to start taking Metformin and I would much rather take a natural supplement. How many mg of Curcumin do you take per day? Do you also take the others mentioned in the article? Ginger? Magnesium? Have you ever heard of Protandim? Any help on what has worked for you would be much appreciated. This is very scary and I am hoping to find ways to combat this monster without taking over prescribed drugs. Thanks in advance for your time.
When I accepted that I was diabetic, I sought the natural route as well. I was in denial for a few days after my initial self-diagnosis but had my affliction subsequently confirmed by one of the top endocrinologists in the County (had to pull a few strings to get an appointment on short notice), Even though my A1c measured "only" 6.1, the nerve damage I was experiencing was confirmed via a battery of tests and sophisticated equipment. My Endo prescribe Actos for me which is normally not a first line drug. However, he was a research physician and had many patients who had achieved terrific results with it. I took it religiously but complemented the medication with "natural" supplements using a long list that included standardized extracts of various sorts such as banaba leaf, cinnamon (aqueous), chromium, vanadium, blended products like Dr. Whittaker's Glucose Essentials, magnesium, CoQ10 (ubiquinol), grape seed, curcumin (Jarrows 95), bitter melon (both extracts and the fresh fruit itself), alpha lipoic acid, biotin, SOD (superoxide dismutase), and a list of others as long as your arm. I took the supplements in divided doses with my meals and separate from (at least 2 hours before/after) my daily Actos dose to minimize or avoid possible interactions. The preceding comments are just to let you know I left no stone unturned.
To answer your question, my dosages of Curcumin were 500mg three times a day (TID), alpha lipoic acid 600mg/biotin 5mg TID, magnesium (blended product) 400mg twice a day (BID), high potency B complex (in addition to multivitamin) BID. Vitamin D3 2000 IU TID, ginger root extract 250mg TID (taken together with Curcumin), Dr. Whitaker's Glucose Essentials (according to label directions). I discontinued some of the others since many of those products were already incorporated in the blended products that I was taking or I felt that the accumulated amounts could become toxic over time (examples include vanadium, chromium, and others). I also discontinued the SOD even though it is a natural substance produced in the body. I discontinued the Dr. Whitaker product after burning through my initial 6-months' supply (it costs around $50 per bottle so it wasn't an inexpensive trial) and felt it was ineffective, at least in my body.
I had heard of Protandim that is promoted as an Nrf2 "synergizer." That's just an advertising gimmick to say that it enhances SOD production in the body which reduces oxidative stress but IMHO, it also significantly increases pocketbook stress. I base the latter on the fact that it is sold primarily through multilevel marketing vectors and thus is highly suspect. You might want to read this web page before possibly wasting your money on this questionable product. If you do proceed with the use of natural supplements, be sure to keep detailed journals of your dosages and results. It will help you objectively evaluate whether the supplements are providing your body with any benefits and/or whether they are cost-effective. FYI, I still take alpha lipoic acid/biotin, curcumin, magnesium, grape seed, CoQ10, vitamin D3 and others but have reduced doses to one per day except for the vitamin D3 (still taking 2000 IU TID but also take an annual 25-hydroxy vitamin D blood test to make sure I stay within safe ranges). I have discontinued many other supplements as being either ineffective, not cost-effective, potentially toxic or no longer needed now that I am in genuinely good control of my blood sugar levels; not the damaging higher levels that the healthcare community at large accepts, even promotes, as being "in control."
Refreshing to see that you're a fan of the original film starring Michael Renne instead of the disappointing remake. I only wish resurrection was a simple as uttering a simple phrase to restore someone back to life via an outside vector (i.e., the robot).
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