Can Vitamins to help control your blood sugar?
VITAMINS THAT CONTROL BLOOD SUGAR
Blood sugar must be maintained between 70 mg/dL and 130 mg/dL before meals and, kept less than 180 mg/dL after meals. Blood sugar levels above these figures is indicative of diabetes mellitus.
Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease of blood sugar metabolism; characterized by abnormal increase in blood sugar levels. Diabetes mellitus cause significant damages to the kidneys, nerves, heart, eyes and blood vessels. It is a leading cause of heart attack, stroke, foot ulcer, blindness and kidney failure.
In 2014, World Health Organization, WHO, reported that about 422 million persons are currently living with diabetes. The apex health organization also estimated that diabetes mellitus will be the seventh leading cause of death by 2016.
This has triggered a global response towards affordable treatment and prevention for diabetes mellitus. Treatment and prevention of diabetes involves change in habits, physical activities and diet.
Vitamins are essential micronutrients. They can only be obtained from food. However, do they help with the control of blood sugar?
Vitamins and Blood Sugar Control
Studies have shown that diabetics have significant low vitamins levels and, when these are supplemented, clinical outcomes improve. The following vitamins have some relationship with blood sugar levels and, could play significant roles in its control.
- Vitamin D
Vitamin D has many studies that gives evidence of its blood sugar regulatory property. Vitamin D improves body cells sensitivity to pancreatic insulin. This helps the body cells to take up sugar molecules in the blood faster; reducing blood sugar levels. Vitamin D is obtained through exposure to sunlight especially in the early hours of the day. It could also be obtained from eating mushrooms, liver and fish.
- Vitamin B
Vitamin B has 12 derivatives: vitamin B1 to Vitamin B12.
Vitamin B7 is also called biotin. Biotin is an independent co-factor for glucokinase. Glucokinase is the enzyme that catalyzes the first step in the utilization and metabolism of glucose. It is produce by the liver and reduced in diabetics. Biotin helps improve the activity of glucokinase even when it is in small quantities.
Vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 improves glucose tolerance. It further modulates the impact of high blood sugar levels on the nerves. However, their effects have been shown to be more pronounced in the presence of minerals like chromium. Vegetables, sea foods and whole grains are good sources of these B vitamins.
- Vitamin C
A new study that was published in the Journal, Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism showed that vitamin C can help control blood sugar levels. The study hinged on the anti-oxidant property of vitamin C on free sugar radicals such as sorbitol in blood. Sorbitol increases the risk of other complications in type-2 diabetics. Fruits especially berries are reliable sources of vitamin C.
The blood sugar regulatory property of vitamins is not independent. Vitamins don’t directly control blood sugar levels. However, they help many biochemical reactions that are involved in the physiologic control of blood sugar levels. They also mitigate against other complications of high blood sugar levels.
It is recommended that you talk it over with your doctor, before adopting any vitamin supplement for the control of blood sugar. However, we advise that you always eat vitamins rich food.