This Thanksgiving you may be planning a meal, or perhaps just planning on eating lots of yummy foods! Some people are on a restricted diet, such as those trying to manage diabetes.November is American Diabetes Month, and we have some helpful tips for those interested in complementary health approaches:
- A healthy diet, physical activity, and blood glucose testing are the basic tools for managing type 2 diabetes.
- Some dietary supplements may have side effects, including interacting with your diabetes treatment or increasing your risk of kidney problems.
- Chromium (an essential trace mineral found in many foods) has been studied for preventing diabetes and controlling glucose levels, but research has found it has few or no benefits.
- There is no evidence that magnesium helps to manage diabetes; however research suggests that people with lower magnesium intake may have a greater risk of developing diabetes.
- There is no strong evidence that herbs and other dietary supplements, including cinnamon and omega-3s, can help to control diabetes or its complications. In some people, cinnamon might worsen liver disease and interact with blood thinners.
- Talk with your health care provider before considering any dietary supplement for yourself, particularly if you are pregnant or nursing, or for a child.
NCCIH continues to fund research to explore approaches that may prove helpful.