Archive for the ‘Diabetes’ category

Health Benefits of Bitter Melon

July 12th, 2007

If there was a vegetable that was found in places like Asia and South America that could help with diabetes, would you believe it?

Balsam pear aka Bitter melon may be just the vegetable. It is found in Asia, South America and Africa. It is a tropical veggie that gets its name from its bitter taste. They look like a light green cucumber and are very wrinkled. Inside an immature fruit you will find it to be white. As the fruit begins to ripen, it begins to have a red appearance. The seeds are very bitter and are better left out when cooking it. The longer the bitter melon ripens, the more bitter it becomes until it is inedible.

Health Benefits

Bitter melon has been used for centuries in Asian medicine. Its strong bitter taste means it can be used for digestion issues but can worsen other ailments such as ulcers.

Besides digestion, bitter melon was also used to treat psoriasis, cancer and diabetes.

The most significant health benefit has to do with diabetes. Bitter melon has been shown to help with blood sugars levels. The plant produces a bovine like insulin that can be injected into diabetics. The studies that have been done have shown that this plant insulin works just like its bovine counterpart with added advantages. It’s important to note that this benefit come from the juice of unripened fruit.

Some people are not able to take bovine insulin due to an unfavorable reaction to it. In these cases, the bitter melon can be given as a replacement.

Also, for those who are concerned with introducing an animal product into their bodies, this would be a great alternative. Vegetarians will be able to use the balsam pear insulin with no worries.

There have also been studies done that show benefits to people carrying the HIV virus. The bitter melon has been shown to help with negative reactions to HIV medications.

This vegetable also carries with it a number of vitamins and minerals. It is loaded with calcium and iron along with more beta carotene then broccoli. It has tons of potassium and vitamins A, C, B1 and B3. Oh, and let’s not forget the fiber.

Other uses for Bitter melon

You will find balsam pear used in many Asian dishes. It is usually not found with other vegetables because of its intense bitter taste. However, in China it is used in many stir fry dishes.

In Indian cuisine you will sometimes find bitter melon with potatoes. The potatoes help balance the bitterness along with the yogurt that accompanies the dish.

The seeds are usually discarded when cooking because they carry an extra dose of bitterness.

Of course, if you want to enjoy the benefits of bitter melon, you can buy bitter melon supplements.

**Please, before taking any supplement to help treat a disease or ailment, contact your doctor to make sure the treatment is appropriate for your condition.

Natural Cures for Diabetes

July 9th, 2007

Diabetes has been on the rise for several years now, especially in children. There is an increased need for information concerning this disease along with understanding and treatment options.

Understanding Diabetes

There are two types of diabetes and they are easily named. Type I Diabetes, and type II. Diabetes is when the body’s insulin is either not being made or not being used properly. Insulin in a healthy body is a hormone produced to break down sugars and starches into energy.

Type I is usually found in children and young adults. Insulin is not being made in patients with type I.

Type II is the most common. The body doesn’t make the insulin needed or is unable to use it in type II diabetics.

Natural Cures

The safe, natural way to treat diabetes is through diet. This may seem like common sense and easy to do, however if you are not reading labels and understanding how the body processes food, this could be more difficult than expected.

First, talk to your doctor about what types of things are good to eat and which ones you should stay away from. A nutritionist is another great person to see. They will be able to write out a menu for you that has all of the foods along with recipes that you can have.

Read labels! It is really a surprise once you begin. You will find that healthy fruit granola bar that you have been eating (and thought was good for you) is really packed full of sugar and fat. Maybe it’s a sports drink that you have after your daily exercise routine or your salad dressing. There are sugars and fats in a lot of what we eat. It’s important to know exactly what is going in your body.

Exercise is a must. Take the dog for a walk, climb those stairs instead of riding the elevator. Swimming is another great, low impact exercise. The more we move, the more fat we burn. The less fat our body has, the healthier we are.

There are supplements that can also be taken to help with diabetes and pre-diabetic conditions.

Chromium is one that has shown positive benefits. It has been shown to prevent the onset of Type II or even reverse it.

Bitter melon has also been shown to help regulate blood sugar levels. Others that may help are Java Plum, Noni, and Bitterwood. Java Plum may help to level out the insulin. Noni will help restore energy, while Bitterwood will help to stimulate the liver.

Reflexology and yoga can be used to reduce stress. Stress is often what causes a lot of the body’s problems including carving sweet, fatty foods.

Things to Remember

Diabetes is a very serious disease that can lead to things like blindness, poor circulation, and heart disease. It is very important you speak with a doctor about any treatments before you begin them.