Nothing is scarier than having a symptom that persists. If you are experiencing weakness, numbness, pain, tingling, or burning in your hands or feet that does not go away and you also have been battling a blood sugar problem, you may have diabetic neuropathy. If you haven’t been getting blood work done you may not even know you have a blood sugar problem so make sure to get your lab work done at least once a year.
Early symptoms of diabetic neuropathy:
- Pins and needles
How it happens:
There are a few theories on how the nerves get damaged. It is possible that when there is excessive sugar floating in the bloodstream as opposed to being safely held and utilized (for energy) in the cells it can scratch up the vessels causing damage. These damaged blood vessels are not as efficient at getting nutrients to where they need to go; nourishing the nerves for instance. The nerves in the hands and feet are most vulnerable but the eyes are susceptible to damage as well.
What can you do?
First and foremost, GET YOUR BLOOD SUGAR UNDER CONTROL!!! No excuses, just do it. We have many food plans here to help you.
- Exercise and stress management are also important. This uses up the glucose in the bloodstream and keeps the nerves and blood vessels healthy. Exercise also improves circulation, lowers cholesterol and reduces stress. Stress management helps keep the hormone cortisol under control. Cortisol, released when you are under stress (think of fight or flight reactions) will release glucose/sugar stored in the liver for fuel to deal with the danger your body thinks you are in so you can fight or run away. This is how an increase in cortisol increases blood sugar as well.
- Quit smoking. Do I really need to discuss this?!
- Chiropractic Therapy. Nothing improves nerve function more than chiropractic. In our clinic, I use muscle testing to determine imbalances. I feel it is the best way for the doctor and patient to know what imbalances are needing attention.
- Massage Therapy helps increase circulation to the hands and feet. Remember that it’s the circulation of nutrients and oxygen in the bloodstream that nourishes the nerves and keeps them healthy.
- BEMER Therapy is known for its ability to improve circulation. We are happy to introduce our patients to this cutting edge technology. Beginning this month we are offering sessions starting at $40.00.
What supplements can you take?
Anti-inflammatory Supplements that have been shown to help relieve the pain of diabetic neuropathy:
- Alpha Lipoic Acid not only reduces inflammation but also increases insulin sensitivity.
- Omega 3 fish oil is widely known for its anti-inflammatory properties.
- Evening Primrose Oil can decrease the symptoms of tingling, burning, and numbness of diabetic neuropathy.
Supplements that help control blood sugar:
- Chromium picolinate increases the cells ability to receive the signal from insulin to allow glucose into the cell and out of the bloodstream.
- Ceylon Cinnamon can imitate the effects of insulin allowing for more glucose to enter the cell.
Supplements that protect nerves:
- B Vitamins and especially B12 help maintain the sheaths that cover and protect the nerves and allow for fast nerve impulse transmission.
I hope this information gave you hope in managing this condition. It’s always best to avoid illness but know that most conditions can be improved by natural means. Let me know if this information helped you.