Keep your sugar in check

Diabetes continues to rise dramatically each year. The International Diabetes Federation reported that 425 million people worldwide are living with diabetes in 2017. It is estimated to increase to 629 million by 2045. 1 in 2 (212 million) people with diabetes were undiagnosed. It caused an estimated 4 million deaths. In Singapore, one out of 9 people aged 18 to 69 has diabetes. That’s about 11.3% of our population or more than 400,000 people!

Are you at risk?

Diabetes is a chronic condition characterised by elevated blood sugar levels in the body. Type-2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes, accounting for at least 90% of all cases. It usually occurs in adults over 40 years old and who are overweight. However, there are increasing numbers of young people being diagnosed with type-2 diabetes.

Many factors can increase your risk for diabetes. You have a higher chance of developing it as you get older (over 45 years old), if you have a family history of diabetes, or are overweight and physically inactive.

Diabetes is highly fatal. It can lead to several life-threatening complications such as heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, nerve damage, blindness and lower-limb amputation.

Watch out for the common symptoms of type-2 diabetes, including unusual thirst, frequent urination, unexplained weight gain or loss, numbness or tingling in the hands and feet, blurred vision, slow wound healing and extreme fatigue. The symptoms may be so mild that you do not notice them. It is therefore important to get your blood sugar checked regularly and monitored closely so that it will not swing out of control.

Controlling sugar levels

Currently, there is no known cure for diabetes, but with positive lifestyle modifications, you can prevent or delay the onset of type-2 diabetes. Keep a healthy weight, eat a healthy diet, exercise more and quit smoking. With these steps, you can lower your risk of this deadly disease and the complications it brings.

A number of herbs and spices offer natural alternatives to help control blood sugar levels. These noteworthy plant-based remedies include fenugreek, cinnamon, bitter melon, turmeric, Gymnema sylvestre, banaba leaf, olive leaf and mistletoe.

Clinical studies have shown that fenugreek is effective in lowering blood sugar. Fenulife is a good source of concentrated, odour-free fenugreek extract which provides 3 times more galactomannan soluble fibre than whole fenugreek seeds. When ingested, it forms a gel-like viscous mass that fills the stomach to help increase the feeling of satiety and slow down the absorption of glucose from food. It also stimulates insulin production when blood sugar levels are high.

Cinnamon has also gained much attention for its positive effects on blood sugar levels. It contains a water-soluble polyphenol compound called methyl hydroxy chalcone polymer (MHCP), which is able to mimic insulin, increasing the uptake of blood sugar by cells.

Keep your sugar under control and live a normal and healthy life.