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Is Turmeric Helpful in Diabetes Treatment? Curcumin & Heart Health

7 minute read


Turmeric has been used for centuries both in the kitchen and in the world of medicine. As a natural option for pain relief, turmeric has been used to successfully reduce pain and to treat a variety of inflammatory-related health conditions.

Because of the powerful compounds in turmeric extract, the focus has now switched to other diseases like diabetes, and it seems there is more to this spice than meets the eye.

Breaking Down Diabetes

Diabetes is a condition characterized by blood sugar disruptions as a result of not being able to produce or use insulin properly. Insulin is the hormone responsible for regulating blood sugar levels, and when this changes blood sugar levels can become dangerously high.

There are several different types of diabetes and understanding what you have makes treatment more effective.

Type 1: An autoimmune disease where your immune system attacks cells in your pancreas where insulin is made.

Type 2: This occurs when your body becomes resistant to insulin and blood sugar levels increase.

Prediabetes: A condition where blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be classified as type-2 diabetes.

Gestational diabetes: This is when your blood glucose is high during pregnancy, caused by insulin-blocking hormones produced by the placenta.

Diabetes affects millions across the world and can be life-threatening if left untreated. Other vital organs like your eyes, kidneys, and nerves can become irreparably damaged.

Early identification and diagnosis is the key to successful treatment. With careful and diligent management, you can live comfortably with diabetes.

Medications are available to help control blood glucose levels, but these days, more natural options seem to be preferred.

The Perfect Spice to Combat High Sugar

The main compound in turmeric is known as curcumin, and it has been used for centuries in traditional and ancient medical practice. Individuals with conditions like arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, Alzheimer’s, psoriasis, and even cancer have been shown to benefit from a turmeric-based therapy.

Essentially, whenever oxidative damage and inflammation are the cause, turmeric has been a valuable solution.

Turmeric seems to possess many qualities that allow it to help with diabetes management and prevention. Studies have found that curcumin helps to reduce blood sugar levels by improving insulin sensitivity.

In doing so, more insulin is available to regulate glucose and diabetes management is easier. There is also an aspect of diabetes prevention to turmeric extract, as subjects with prediabetes were less likely to develop the full-blown condition once they started a turmeric supplement. Here is how turmeric can benefit you:

Helps With Obesity

Diabetes and obesity are often seen together, so much so that it is difficult to confirm which is a cause and which is the effect. What is known is that turmeric helps to reduce obesity by preventing fatty deposits.

Because excess fat storage increases inflammation, transforming prediabetes into type-II diabetes, this reduction in fat can help to prevent diabetes. Maintaining a healthy weight is one of the easiest ways to get control over your diabetes, and turmeric can help.

Prevents Prediabetes

Turmeric can also prevent prediabetes. When taken regularly, turmeric improves pancreas activity and insulin production. Turmeric also protects your pancreatic cells from oxidative damage and acts on the receptor cells in your pancreas that regulate insulin production.

For those at risk for prediabetes, a turmeric plan may be a good way to ensure your pancreas maintains optimal function, and that insulin production continues to keep blood sugar under control.

Reduces Insulin Resistance

Insulin resistance is the main cause for the onset of diabetes as cells do not respond accordingly and blood glucose is not absorbed. Excessively high blood glucose levels can result in serious and permanent damage to your pancreas.

Once this happens, insulin production is impaired. The result is even higher blood sugar levels. Turmeric works with your pancreas to stimulate glucose absorption and insulin production, thereby ensuring that insulin resistance never develops.

Protects From Heart Disease

There has long been known to be a link between diabetes and heart disease. In fact, heart disease is the number one cause of death among diabetics. High blood glucose levels cause oxidative damage to endothelial cells, inflammatory damage to arteries, and increased fatty deposits in blood vessels.

As circulation becomes restricted, the heart is placed under great strain, and the risk for heart disease increases. Turmeric controls oxidative damage, inflammation, and reduces fatty deposits, helping to protect your heart.

Helps With Other Complications

Curcumin also helps those with diabetes by providing relief for several diabetes-related complications. People with diabetes have been known to develop the fatty liver disease more often than non-diabetics, and curcumin has been proven to reduce liver problems for those with diabetes.

The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of curcumin supplements also help to prevent nerve damage and cognitive impairments that are frequently associated with diabetes.

Moving Forward With Turmeric Therapy

Individuals with diabetes often have impaired immune responses, and turmeric can help to improve this too. Overactive immune systems occur alongside diabetes, and this can have serious implications for overall health.

| Related: Turmeric Curcumin: The Golden Root for Your Skin |

Destructive immune responses cause damage to the pancreas, which will impact insulin production and cause spiked blood glucose levels. Turmeric helps to reduce these destructive responses, thus protecting your pancreas.

In addition to overactive immune systems, diabetics also report slow wound healing. Oxidative stress is a common association with diabetes, and it damages cells and tissues, preventing healing.

Oxidative stress on tissues triggers inflammation. Turmeric has both anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can help to alleviate this problem.

The Bottom Line

Without management, diabetes can lead to heart disease and premature death. When you take control, though, you can live a full and healthy life. Turmeric promotes overall health thanks to its powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, and it can now help with diabetes too.

Through several different methods, diabetes can be effectively managed when turmeric is added to the mix.

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