What supplements are good for you as a diabetic?

Posted by kateia @kateia, Nov 13, 2019

I have been working really hard to get my A1C number down since diagnosed. 10.1 at diagnosis – last week 5.8 . I’ve been really watching what I eat, writing items down and exercising. I now want to start adding supplements that may help. One of those suggested is berberine. What is the best source to purchase it and how much do I take? i’ve read a little about it, but can’t always believe what I read on facebook.

I have read about the latest supplements but not tried much of them. My Endocrinologist keeps recommending Vitamin D even in the winter when I can't get much sun unless I go to Florida. Calcium is also important if you don't eat much dairy. The most common recommendations are cinnamon on your oatmeal, which I buy the expensive stuff from Vietnam because it is supposed to be better. I also put it on my no-sugar applesauce. If your AIC stays that low, congratulations and you have no worries about diabetes, I think, if you follow a low carb diet and exercise and feel very good. For other supplements, I look at my blood tests and see if the report shows anything low or too high, and go by that report. I keep copies of my blood tests at home so I can check my diet and stay as balanced as possible. I don't worry about supplements for diabetes because I don't think they produce any miracles for keeping blood sugar levels normal. My motto is that pills are not necessarily the solution. It is the diet and exercise and stress control that makes for success. Boy, I still miss those cinnamon rolls with butter in the morning, but they are not part of my life anymore. My granddaughter is planning to have ice cream at her wedding reception and I am looking forward to that next summer. Try to think about having normal health now and not being diseased. And don't go back to your old ways of eating. I am missing the fresh tomatoes already this winter. Congratulation on your tremendous success and keep up the good work. Dorisena
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With the AIC test, a 5.6 is considered normal for those controlling diabetes so 5.8 is considered prediabetes and is a pretty good score. Continued low carb dieting and exercise should keep the problem gone if you are well disciplined. I would like to be at 6.0 but have not worked hard enough to manage that recently. My endocrinologist will not see me at all since I am below 7.0 at 6.8 right now. I don't intend to overdo at Christmas time. It would be nice if I lost some weight in the summer and reached 6.0 for my granddaughter's wedding next summer. Right now I can't fit into a nice outfit because of my waist which is too big and I refuse to wear loose tops because I am too old to look pregnant. You are encouraging me very much! Dorisena

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Hi @kateia I'd like to offer these few resources as you look for more information on supplements.

First, from the NIH here is a webpage discussing supplements and diabetes: https://nccih.nih.gov/health/diabetes/supplements

Secondly, here is general information about the use of supplements from mayo Clinic Health System: https://mayoclinichealthsystem.org/hometown-health/speaking-of-health/supplements-what-you-need-to-know

@dorisena brings up some great points about sticking to your diet and exercise routine, that I see you are already doing. Have you had a chance to discuss this with your doctor? What have they recommended?

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Thanks for the into. Looks like we need to study more. My doctor says my blood tests are fine, or not. So I get a copy and study the details if I can process it all. After all, I am the cook, and it is important that I plan the correct foods for my body. It is good that I like to cook fresh foods. My friends at my age don't cook much anymore, that that is not a good idea if they wish to remain healthy. I avoid food in boxes. Sure, it uses up my time when I would like to be sewing or playing the piano, but if I don't eat well for my needs, I won't feel like sewing or playing the piano, or anything else. Today I sneaked a nap. Dorisena

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@dorisena

Thanks for the into. Looks like we need to study more. My doctor says my blood tests are fine, or not. So I get a copy and study the details if I can process it all. After all, I am the cook, and it is important that I plan the correct foods for my body. It is good that I like to cook fresh foods. My friends at my age don't cook much anymore, that that is not a good idea if they wish to remain healthy. I avoid food in boxes. Sure, it uses up my time when I would like to be sewing or playing the piano, but if I don't eat well for my needs, I won't feel like sewing or playing the piano, or anything else. Today I sneaked a nap. Dorisena

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Bobbie Randall, who is a certified dietitian and diabetic educator from Wooster, Ohio, writes in our local paper that weather fluctuations can have a negative effect on the body's ability to produce and use insulin. She also promotes washing hands to prevent disease and take additional vitamin D3. Do not skip meals, she says, and don't gain weight in the winter. And she recommends drinking lots of water.
Exercise indoors when it is cold. Stock up on soup, sugar-free cough drops and yogurt. I have read her columns for quite a while and think she is helpful and practical. She says to walk your dog, and if you don't have a dog, walk your dog anyway. Good humor.
Dorisena

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@dorisena

Bobbie Randall, who is a certified dietitian and diabetic educator from Wooster, Ohio, writes in our local paper that weather fluctuations can have a negative effect on the body's ability to produce and use insulin. She also promotes washing hands to prevent disease and take additional vitamin D3. Do not skip meals, she says, and don't gain weight in the winter. And she recommends drinking lots of water.
Exercise indoors when it is cold. Stock up on soup, sugar-free cough drops and yogurt. I have read her columns for quite a while and think she is helpful and practical. She says to walk your dog, and if you don't have a dog, walk your dog anyway. Good humor.
Dorisena

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Thanks for all the information!!! Looks like I'll continue doing what I'm doing and try to get the nutrients I need from my food intake instead of pills. I'm looking forward to the "new" fruits coming in. Grapefruit, oranges, etc. just for a change of pace. Yes, I know they are high in sugar but when eaten with a protein they are better for you than the "chocolate cake" I crave. Come to think of it, I really don't crave the cake anymore!! lol. It's an early winter in Iowa and I'm not looking forward to a long winter. Have started exercising indoors. Try to do 30 minutes/day plus chair exercises. My husband is finished with harvest so I can go back to menu planning which helps tremendously with cooking healthy. I'm so glad that my husband is willing to eat anything that I fix. He's actually lost a few pounds as well. It's frustrating having to cook ALL the time when our friends go out to eat most of the time. As far as my doctor goes….a once a year visit is enough for me. That my insurance will cover…at least most of it. Until I'm 65 I'm pretty well stuck. If I could find a doctor that would work with me and listen to what I have to say, I'd go more often. Right now, I probably know more about diabetes that my doctor does. I get MORE help from this site than any doctor that I see. I will keep track of my numbers and have my blood tests which are important. I have to keep costs down so will find a less expensive route to take. I always update the doctor with my numbers when I have tests taken. Thanks to all of you for your great suggestions!!!

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@dorisena

I have read about the latest supplements but not tried much of them. My Endocrinologist keeps recommending Vitamin D even in the winter when I can't get much sun unless I go to Florida. Calcium is also important if you don't eat much dairy. The most common recommendations are cinnamon on your oatmeal, which I buy the expensive stuff from Vietnam because it is supposed to be better. I also put it on my no-sugar applesauce. If your AIC stays that low, congratulations and you have no worries about diabetes, I think, if you follow a low carb diet and exercise and feel very good. For other supplements, I look at my blood tests and see if the report shows anything low or too high, and go by that report. I keep copies of my blood tests at home so I can check my diet and stay as balanced as possible. I don't worry about supplements for diabetes because I don't think they produce any miracles for keeping blood sugar levels normal. My motto is that pills are not necessarily the solution. It is the diet and exercise and stress control that makes for success. Boy, I still miss those cinnamon rolls with butter in the morning, but they are not part of my life anymore. My granddaughter is planning to have ice cream at her wedding reception and I am looking forward to that next summer. Try to think about having normal health now and not being diseased. And don't go back to your old ways of eating. I am missing the fresh tomatoes already this winter. Congratulation on your tremendous success and keep up the good work. Dorisena
'

Jump to this post

@dorisena I too put cinnamon on my oatmeal and mix it into my yogurt. I use Ceylon cinnamon which is difficult to find except on amazon and in Whole Foods — the price at Amazon just got reduced too. Ceylon cinnamon is called “true cinnamon”. It is milder tasting than other cinnamons so you can use more. The other cinnamons can be harmful in large quantities, particularly to the liver. My sister puts cinnamon in her coffee too.

I had an appointment with my endocrinologist on Monday. I asked him about cinnamon and he felt that the amount you would need to make a difference would be considerably more than most people could possibly use. He is an extremely well regarded doctor but I’m not sure I agree with him on this. I have been using quite a bit of the Ceylon cinnamon and my A1c was 5.8 despite not following a low carb diet very well. I guess it is possible that I “reversed” my diabetes since I have lost a very considerable amount of weight.
JK

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@contentandwell

@dorisena I too put cinnamon on my oatmeal and mix it into my yogurt. I use Ceylon cinnamon which is difficult to find except on amazon and in Whole Foods — the price at Amazon just got reduced too. Ceylon cinnamon is called “true cinnamon”. It is milder tasting than other cinnamons so you can use more. The other cinnamons can be harmful in large quantities, particularly to the liver. My sister puts cinnamon in her coffee too.

I had an appointment with my endocrinologist on Monday. I asked him about cinnamon and he felt that the amount you would need to make a difference would be considerably more than most people could possibly use. He is an extremely well regarded doctor but I’m not sure I agree with him on this. I have been using quite a bit of the Ceylon cinnamon and my A1c was 5.8 despite not following a low carb diet very well. I guess it is possible that I “reversed” my diabetes since I have lost a very considerable amount of weight.
JK

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I get my cinnamon from a wholesale place because my daughter knew them but it is a large quantity and I don't know how long it will stay "good" but I certainly love the flavor. Congratulations on the 5.8 test. I spend too much time on the computer when I should be exercising, but running the sewing machine is more fun. I am still interested in finding another doctor but it is risky when you are on Medicare. Others doctors may not accept you as a patient in this area. I am skipping my suggested next appointment in December because my blood pressure is better and I think I should be working on weight loss rather than taking more pills. I must say I enjoy the suggestions and support from this group, and it makes me thankful at Thanksgiving. Dorisena

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@kateia

Thanks for all the information!!! Looks like I'll continue doing what I'm doing and try to get the nutrients I need from my food intake instead of pills. I'm looking forward to the "new" fruits coming in. Grapefruit, oranges, etc. just for a change of pace. Yes, I know they are high in sugar but when eaten with a protein they are better for you than the "chocolate cake" I crave. Come to think of it, I really don't crave the cake anymore!! lol. It's an early winter in Iowa and I'm not looking forward to a long winter. Have started exercising indoors. Try to do 30 minutes/day plus chair exercises. My husband is finished with harvest so I can go back to menu planning which helps tremendously with cooking healthy. I'm so glad that my husband is willing to eat anything that I fix. He's actually lost a few pounds as well. It's frustrating having to cook ALL the time when our friends go out to eat most of the time. As far as my doctor goes….a once a year visit is enough for me. That my insurance will cover…at least most of it. Until I'm 65 I'm pretty well stuck. If I could find a doctor that would work with me and listen to what I have to say, I'd go more often. Right now, I probably know more about diabetes that my doctor does. I get MORE help from this site than any doctor that I see. I will keep track of my numbers and have my blood tests which are important. I have to keep costs down so will find a less expensive route to take. I always update the doctor with my numbers when I have tests taken. Thanks to all of you for your great suggestions!!!

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Kateia, it is terrific to have a friend on the farm who lives as I used to, until I became a widow and rented the farm to the neighbors. I do most all my cooking and only go out when I can get a friend or family member to socialize. My sons previously did the farming, so I cooked meals for six, including the hired man who was a family member, and also the extra help at planting and harvest. Now I make a pot of soup and freeze it in small portions and have it handy on days my joints don't want to do much. I refuse to leave the farm or this big house, so taking care of the place becomes my exercise plan, as much as I am able. Actually, I have a good life for my age.
Dorisena

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@dorisena

I get my cinnamon from a wholesale place because my daughter knew them but it is a large quantity and I don't know how long it will stay "good" but I certainly love the flavor. Congratulations on the 5.8 test. I spend too much time on the computer when I should be exercising, but running the sewing machine is more fun. I am still interested in finding another doctor but it is risky when you are on Medicare. Others doctors may not accept you as a patient in this area. I am skipping my suggested next appointment in December because my blood pressure is better and I think I should be working on weight loss rather than taking more pills. I must say I enjoy the suggestions and support from this group, and it makes me thankful at Thanksgiving. Dorisena

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@dorisena. I am amazed at that 5.8 A1c. Due to my accident in July I exercised very little and being stuck in the house I ate too much, admittedly much of it not healthy snacks.
I asked my doctor about reversing diabetes and he said that ALL diabetes has a genetic component. The fact that no one else in my family was ever diabetic would indicate that I had a “weak” diabetes gene. I was heavier than anyone else in my family had ever been, so that could have brought it on. Overall I lost @90 pounds (right now it’s more like 84) so I did lose a very significant amount of weight.
With any other doctor I would probably question what he said but not only is he a five-star doctor on all of the rating sites, but he is very highly regarded by every other doctor I know.
For me, I believe that Ceylon cinnamon is a better choice, healthwise – I did some googling after reading something about cinnamons in a health newsletter. I will probably buy some of the more aromatic cinnamon for holiday cooking.
JK

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Thanks for your research, @contentandwell. I was not familiar with Ceylon cinnamon, but I will look into it. Your 5.8 A1C really is pretty good since you have not been exercising much. Congratulations!

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@hopeful33250

Thanks for your research, @contentandwell. I was not familiar with Ceylon cinnamon, but I will look into it. Your 5.8 A1C really is pretty good since you have not been exercising much. Congratulations!

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@hopeful33250 thanks, Teresa. I think I must have basically “reversed” my diabetes with my weight loss. When I was more definitely diabetic my A1c was as low as 4.9 or 4.8! My endocrinologist said it was lower than his and he’s not diabetic. Strangely though, when I do bg tests they are not that low.

I am back to trying to be less indulgent so I can lose the pounds I have gained back. Getting back to the gym and pool will help in two ways – burning calories and keep me busy and out of the house so I snack less.
JK

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@contentandwell

@hopeful33250 thanks, Teresa. I think I must have basically “reversed” my diabetes with my weight loss. When I was more definitely diabetic my A1c was as low as 4.9 or 4.8! My endocrinologist said it was lower than his and he’s not diabetic. Strangely though, when I do bg tests they are not that low.

I am back to trying to be less indulgent so I can lose the pounds I have gained back. Getting back to the gym and pool will help in two ways – burning calories and keep me busy and out of the house so I snack less.
JK

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I hear you, @contentandwell. I got back to the pool today for the first time this week. It felt soo good!

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@hopeful33250

I hear you, @contentandwell. I got back to the pool today for the first time this week. It felt soo good!

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@hopeful33250 I have gotten to enjoying the gym more than the pool. You get cold and wet in the pool! 😉 Then there's showering, etc., so I end up with a short visit to the sauna as my little reward. I would enjoy the hot tub but I'm pretty paranoid about germs.
JK

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@contentandwell

@hopeful33250 I have gotten to enjoying the gym more than the pool. You get cold and wet in the pool! 😉 Then there's showering, etc., so I end up with a short visit to the sauna as my little reward. I would enjoy the hot tub but I'm pretty paranoid about germs.
JK

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I understand what you are saying, @contentandwell. I don't have the same immune problems you do, but I'm very hesitant to go into a hot tub. I love a dry sauna, however, I can't stay in too long.

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