Anyone who has experienced blood sugar problems understands the importance of maintaining healthy blood sugars. Simply put: you just feel better. Some folks take medication to help control their blood sugar, while others rely more upon lifestyle changes. Regardless of how you decide to manage your blood sugar, it is important to be well educated when it comes to your treatment options, so that you can live a better life.
Chromium and blood sugar control
Chromium is an essential mineral that is important in carbohydrate metabolism, and is an active component of GTF (glucose tolerance factor). Studies have shown that chromium has beneficial effects on blood sugar control mechanisms. 1 The mineral assists in the metabolism of glucose and the synthesis of fatty acids and cholesterol by stimulating the enzymes involved in these processes.
Chromium helps regulate blood sugar levels by collaborating with insulin in facilitating the uptake of glucose into the cells. 2 If chromium is not present, insulin’s action is blocked and blood sugar levels are elevated. Insulin is secreted in response to the rise in blood glucose levels after the consumption of a meal. Insulin functions by increasing the amount of glucose taken up by the cells, which lowers blood sugar levels as a result.
Zinc and insulin production
The mineral zinc plays an important role in the production and release of insulin. 3 Zinc is also able to help glucose utilization in muscles and fat cells. 3 We believe that a healthy supply of zinc is required for the proper functioning of the organs and glands that are involved in controlling blood sugar levels. Another possible benefit of zinc supplementation is a stronger immune system. It is not recommended that you take more than 40 mg of zinc daily. 4
Vanadium and insulin sensitivity
Vanadium has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar levels in those with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. 5 There seems to be a mixed debate going on about the safety vanadium supplements. Some studies suggest that vanadium supplementation causes toxicity by promoting free radical production. 5 Other studies do not note vanadium toxicity as a concern. 6 We recommend supplementing a bottle of our liquid vanadium first, and then switching over to our phytogenic liquid trace minerals that contain vanadium as part of the mineral complex. ..
Other nutrients for healthy blood sugar
- Vitamin C – This water soluble vitamin is an important antioxidant and has been shown to lower blood sugar. 7 We recommend our catalyzed vitamin C liquid or capsule supplement because you will get the entire vitamin C phyto-complex instead of just ascorbic acid.
- Vitamin E – Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant that has been shown to improve insulin resistance in some studies. 8 We recommend our liquid vitamin E supplement for optimal absorption and assimilation.
- Alpha Lipoic Acid – This nutrient improves insulin sensitivity and relieves oxidative stress. 9 Alpha Lipoic acid may also detoxify the liver and protect cells. A standard dosage for blood sugar control might range from 300 – 600 mgs daily.
- Cinnamon – Some studies have indicated that regular use of cinnamon can help lower blood glucose levels. 1 Dosages in the studies ranged from 1- 6 grams per day.
Lifestyle changes for healthy blood sugar
- Exercise – Exercise in moderation may help control blood sugar levels. About 20 -30 minutes per day is sufficient.
- Water – Drinking pure water is a simple step that can be taken to improve any health situation. Eight to twelve 8-oz. glasses are recommended.
- Rest – Try to avoid stressful situations, if possible; and get at least eight hours of rest each night.
To sum things up; the natural way to healthy blood sugar involves a change in lifestyle. A healthy diet, the right nutrients, exercise in moderation, adequate rest and pure water are the cornerstones of a successful program. We strongly recommend that you check with your doctor before making any lifestyle changes to control your blood sugar levels, and especially if your blood sugar levels are not under control with lifestyle changes alone.
- Chromium Picolinate improves blood glucose: A six-year follow-up study of 1,056 patients with type 2 diabetes. United States Department of Agriculture.
- Chromium. Linus Pauling Institute – Micronutrient Information Center.
- Zinc and Diabetes. The Healing Center. Lewis Mehl-Madrona, M.D., Ph.D.
- Zinc. George Mateljan Foundation.
- Vanadium. University of Maryland Medical Center.
- Vanadium Supplement, Vanadyl Sulfate. Ray Sahelian, M.D.
- Effects of Niacin and Vitamin C on Blood Sugar. AJP Legacy.
- High Doses of Vitamin E and Insulin Resistance. DOC News.
- Alpha Lipoic Acid Information. Ray Sahelian, M.D.