08 July, 2011
Supplements to Stop Sugar Cravings
Certain dietary supplements may help stop your sugar cravings. According to the National Council on Strength and Fitness, sugar is a preservative found in surprising quantities in foods that most people would not presume to be sugary. Excessive sugar consumption may lead to numerous health problems, including diabetes. Before taking dietary supplements to help stop your sugar cravings, talk with your doctor about the possible side effects, proper dosage and potential drug interactions.
Gymnema, also known as Gymnema sylvestre, is an herbal supplement that may be helpful in stopping your sugar cravings. According to the University of Michigan Health System, gymnema has been used as a treatment for Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes for over 2,000 years. Gymnema, a woody climbing plant native to the tropical forests of central and southern India, belongs to the milkweed family, has a sweetish taste and possesses cooling tendencies. The aerial parts of the plant are used for numerous health reasons, including curbing sugar cravings. Dr. Michael T. Murray, a naturopathic physician and author of the book "The Healing Power of Herbs," states that gymnema components block the sensation of sweetness when applied to your tongue, which may help stop your sugar cravings. Gymnema is a hypoglycemic, hypolipidemic and anti-atheroscerotic.
Ed Smith, an herbalist and author of the book "Therapeutic Herb Manual," states that jambul, also known as syzygium, is an Ayurvedic herb that has been used to help reduce or balance the level of sugar in your blood and urine. Jambul, notes Smith, is a mild astringent, stomachic and pungent carminative that is used as supportive therapy in the treatment of hyperglycemia and diabetes mellitus. According to Dr. Sharol Tilgner, a naturopathic physician and author of the book "Herbal Medicine From the Heart of the Earth," jambul is indicated for diabetic tendencies and symptoms, including blood sugar abnormalities. By helping control your blood sugar levels, jambul, a member of the myrtaceae family, may reduce your sugar cravings. Jambul has a pungent taste. Practitioners of botanical medicine use the fruit of the plant to help treat many health problems, including sugar cravings.
Licorice, also known as Glycyrrhiza glabra, is a flavorful herbaceous perennial plant that grows wild in certain parts of Europe and Asia. The University of Maryland Medical Center states that licorice has been used both as a food and a medicine for centuries. Licorice belongs to the legume family, has a sweet and nutritious flavor and possesses moistening tendencies. The root of the plant is used for medicinal purposes. According to Murray, licorice can be used as a sweetening agent in place of conventional table sugar. Licorice, notes Murray, is 50 to 100 times sweeter than sucrose, although it has negligible effects on your blood sugar levels. Tilgner states that licorice is a demulcent, anti-inflammatory and adrenal gland modulator that is used to treat many health problems, including adrenal fatigue brought on, at least in part, by excessive sugar consumption. If you have high blood pressure, you should avoid taking herbal supplements that contain licorice.
- National Council on Strength and Fitness: Guidelines on Sugar Consumption
- University of Michigan Health System: Gymnema
- "The Healing Power of Herbs;" Michael T. Murray, N.D.; 1995
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Licorice
- "Herbal Medicine From the Heart of the Earth;" Sharol Tilgner, N.D.; 1999
- "Therapeutic Herb Manual;" Ed Smith; 2007
- Ryhor Bruyeu/iStock/Getty Images