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CAN YOU TREAT DIABETES BY CONSUMING GINGER?

Ginger is a rhizome of a plant called Zingiber Officinalis . Found geographically in the southern part of East India. It has been used in Indian cuisine for long.

Moreover, it is commonly a part of dishes in western countries.

For centuries, this herb is an integral part of Indian Ayurvedic system. For the treatment of several illnesses. In western countries and Asian countries, ginger is commonly used as a treatment for nausea and cough.

Moreover, several studies point out that consuming ginger can help treat diabetes. In this article, we will discuss can you treat diabetes by consuming ginger?

 

CAN YOU TREAT DIABETES BY CONSUMING GINGER?

Diabetes is a disease prevalent in almost all the countries of the world. It is also a major cause of death due to its fatal consequences.

Several approaches have been adopted to treat this disease. Such as allopathic medications, insulin dosing, lifestyle changes etc.

However, an interest in a natural way of treating diabetes has grown among folks. In this article, we will discuss if we can consume ginger to treat diabetes.

 Various studies have demonstrated an antidiabetic effect of ginger. [1]

A meta-analysis of researches on animals and cellular studies suggests that

ginger can help in the management of blood glucose level.

It can be used for the prevention as well as the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus.

Another study shows that ginger can enhance the uptake of glucose into cells. Independent of the level of insulin in the blood. And this can be helpful in treating type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

Moreover, ginger supplementation decreased fasting blood level of sugar and HbA1c.

It should be noted that HbA1c is an indicator of long-term blood glucose level. The decrease in blood level of HbA1c is essential in diabetics. [2]

A 2012 research published in Planta Medica magazine-

suggests that ginger can help lower serum blood Concentration.

By increasing the distribution of GLUT 4 glucose transporters on the surface of muscle cells. [3]

GLUT 4 transporters help in utilizing blood glucose by muscle cells. Increased of these transporters reduces the blood glucose level.

Moreover, ginger can help to control type 1 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. Where pancreatic cells that produce insulin are destroyed.

Insulin is a hormone responsible to deliver blood glucose into cells. Where it is utilized by cells for energy. Deficiency of this hormone results in elevated blood glucose level.

A research carried out on animals-

suggests that ethanol extract of ginger can reduce fasting blood glucose significantly. [4]

In another study, it was noted that long-term use of ginger increased insulin release. And decreased total cholesterol and triglyceride levels in type 1 diabetic rats. [5]

In an animal study carried out in 2015,

few rats with obesity were given a mix of ginger and cinnamon. The following outcome was noted in them:

  • Reduction of body fat
  • Weight loss
  • Blood glucose level reduced
  • Elevated insulin levels

All these findings are considered good for a healthy life.

Ginger effectively suppresses serum glucose. Insulin levels and increases insulin sensitivity in HFD‐fed male Wistar rats.

In a study of 2009, Rats were subjected to 6 weeks of high fat-diet treatment.

The serum level of glucose-

insulin, cholesterol, body weight, LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol,

free fatty acids, triglycerides and phospholipids raised in them.

When the rats were given ginger treatment-

The serum level of glucose, insulin, body weight, cholesterol, LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, free fatty acids, triglycerides, and phospholipids reduced significantly. [6]

A study published in 2010 states that a small daily consumption of ginger helps in delaying the onset and progression of cataract in diabetic rats.

Cataract is one of the eye-related complications of long-term diabetes.

Read this article: HOW TO EAT MORE AND STILL KEEP THE BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL UNDER CONTROL

Other health benefits of ginger:

  • Ginger can help to relieve post-surgery nausea and vomiting. Moreover, it can be used in cancer patients subjected to chemotherapy. Ginger is highly effective in nausea related to pregnancy
  • Ginger has an anti-inflammatory property. Which may help in suppressing pain arising in muscles due to exercise.
  • The anti-inflammatory property of ginger may be helpful in relieving pain due to osteoarthritis.
  • Ginger can be helpful in cardiovascular diseases. As it can reduce the level of cholesterol and triglyceride in the body.
  • Ginger consumption speed up the emptying of the stomach. And thus helpful in chronic indigestion and stomach discomfort.
  • 6-gingerol, a phytochemical present in ginger have anticancer properties.
  • Gingerol, a phytochemical present can help fight infection.
  • Some of the bioactive compounds present in ginger have antioxidant properties.
  • Various animal studies demonstrate the LDL and triglyceride lowering capacity of ginger.
  • Owing to its anti-inflammatory property, it can reduce the menstrual pain upon consumption.

 

Safety profile and adverse effects of ginger:

 Ginger is considered safe if it is taken by mouth. Still, one should not consume more than 4 grams of ginger per day.  Chances are very less likely that you will get any side effects.

However, when few people consumed ginger they experienced-

stomach discomfort, heartburn, diarrhea, and unusual menstrual bleeding.

Ginger is probably safe for teenage girls. If they consume it by mouth up to 4 days around the start of their period.

Ginger is considered safe during pregnancy and commonly used for morning sickness in women. The safety of taking ginger while in pregnancy is still controversial.

Because there is an incidence of miscarriage if it is taken in the 12th week of pregnancy. It’s always advisable for pregnant women to consult the doctor while taking ginger during pregnancy.

Precautions should be taken while consuming ginger along with blood thinning drugs. It is, because, ginger itself thin the blood, which might result in bleeding.

Ginger delays the clotting of blood.

Ginger has a tendency to lower blood pressure. Therefore, it is a wise decision to consult the doctor if you are on any high blood pressure medication.

Because combining the antihypertensive drug with ginger-

can lower your blood pressure further below the basal level.

 

How to consume ginger for diabetes:

  • Raw and unprocessed ginger consumption provides the required benefits in diabetes. Proceeded ginger, ginger pickle, ginger drinks etc lacks nutritional value.
  • Regular consumption of ginger up to least for 6 weeks lowers blood glucose level significantly. [7]
  • So, try to take it in a lower dose over a longer period of time. Rather taking high quantity in a short span of time. 4 gm of raw ginger a day is enough for consumption.
  • Avoid excessive consumption of ginger.

 

The takeaway:

Ginger is not a substitute for antidiabetic medication. Ginger has many health benefits that can significantly promote your health and wellbeing. It can be added to your diet, but, the antidiabetic medication must go on along with it.

It is advisable to consult the physician. Before adding it to your diet plan if you are on an antidiabetic medication.

The patient should stick to the regular consumption. At the same time over consumption of it must be avoided. Discuss the adverse effects and drug interactions of ginger with your physician.

Read this article: What happens to your feet and toe when you have diabetes?