Diabetes: The ‘home-made’ drink that’s ‘effective’ at controlling diabetes and blood sugar

Type 2 diabetes can be a 'devastating diagnosis' says expert

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Type 2 diabetes stems from a dysfunction in the way the body produces insulin – a hormone produced by the pancreas. The primary role of insulin is to regulate blood sugar – the main type of sugar found in blood. Stripped of this mechanism, blood sugar levels rise to dangerous levels if steps are not taken to curtail them.

Diet offers an effective remedy for regulating blood sugar levels, with specific dietary components touted for their anti-hyperglycaemic effects.

According to a review published in Biology, Medicine, & Natural Product Chemistry, one winning item is hibiscus tea.

Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is a flowering plant native to tropical Asia.

Hibiscus is commonly consumed in teas made from its flowers, leaves, and roots.

“According to traditional medicine, Hibiscus is used to treat hypertension, heart diseases and many other ailments,” wrote the researchers in the review.

Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is the common variety which is abundant in tropical home-gardens, “however the scientific data are lacking on the effects”, they noted.

The researchers sought to plug this gap by investigating whether Hibiscus rosa-sinensis flower petals as a “tea” is effective for diabetic patients.

Medical databases such as MEDLINE, BMC, BMJ, research gate, Mendelay literature search database, Google scholar and the general engine Google were searched from November 2018 to April 2019.

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Search was carried out using keywords such as “Hibiscus rosasinensis” and “anti-diabetic effects”.

Data were critically analysed to assess whether the effective doses of the research studies were on a par with the doses present in Hibiscus rosa-sinensis teas.

The researchers found thirty-nine journal articles fulfilled the criteria.

“The review revealed that the dose of H. rosa-sinensis petals present in a home-made Hibiscus tea is theoretically sufficient to elicit anti-hyperglycemic and anti-hyperlipidemic effects,” the researchers wrote.

They added: “Home-made Hibiscus tea is effective in controlling diabetes and hypercholesterolemia without causing acute toxicity.”

Other important tips

Keeping active will help you manage your blood sugar level.

“You should aim for 2.5 hours of activity a week,” advises the NHS.

“You can be active anywhere as long as what you’re doing gets you out of breath.”Many people have type 2 diabetes without realising. This is because symptoms do not necessarily make you feel unwell.

Symptoms of type 2 diabetes include:

  • Peeing more than usual, particularly at night
  • Feeling thirsty all the time
  • Feeling very tired
  • Losing weight without trying to
  • Itching around your penis or vagina, or repeatedly getting thrush
  • Cuts or wounds taking longer to heal
  • Blurred vision.

The earlier diabetes is diagnosed and treatment started, the better.

“Early treatment reduces your risk of other health problems,” notes the NHS.

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