Merck, Januvia and Blood Pressure Medicine

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Does Cinnamon help fight type 2 Diabetes

To answer the question off the bat, no one knows. While this isn't related to Januvia, for those with type 2 diabetes, I've heard anecdotally that Cinnamon of all things can really help. One study shows that Cinnamon can lower blood sugar levels quite a bit and help with cholesterol []. It appears as if certain types of cinnamon contain molecules which are chemically similar to insulin -- and as such can activate insulin receptors.

The trick for some finding the right *kind* of cinnamon, which can be difficult. There are hundreds of types of cinnamon and the kind you want is commonly called "cassia" or "cinnamonium aromium" or sometimes "cinnamonium romulus" (generally the Chinese name). It is grown in Indonesia and china. Problem being that most cinnamons sold in the US are blends of Saigon Cinnamon which does not seem to have the same properties. A number of nutrition stores sell cinnamon pills (vitamin shoppe, gnc) that have the correct cinnamon in them. Currently the best price around is at GNC -- if you buy their GNC card ($15/year) it knocks a bottle of 200 pills down to about $12.

I am not suggesting you replace your medications for cinnamon, but if you are having trouble controlling your blood sugar, try adding cinnamon to your diet. If you are not having trouble, try replacing some of your medication with cinnamon.


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