According to a new study published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, the popular kitchen spice ginger may be an effective therapy for the prevention of type 2 diabetes and the many health complications associated with it.
Ginger is in the same plant family (Zingiberacea) as turmeric - which itself was only recently proven to be 100% effective in preventing the development of type 2 diabetes in pre-diabetics.
In this new ginger study, 70 patients with type 2 diabetes were enrolled in a double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical trial. The objective of this trial was to assess the effects of ginger consumption on glycemic status, lipid profile and some inflammatory markers associated with type 2 diabetes.
Study participants were divided randomly into two groups, receiving either 1600 mg ginger or a placebo daily for 12 weeks. They were measured before and after treatment for blood sugar levels, blood lipids, C-reactive protein (CRP), prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα).
As a result of the therapy, ginger treatment reduced the following parameters significantly compared with the placebo group:
- Fasting plasma glucose
- HbA1C (glycated hemoglobin) - a measurement of how much damage is being caused by sugars to red blood cells in the body, reflective of body wide damage caused by chronically elevated blood sugar
- HOMA (HOmeostatic Model Assessment) - which measures insulin resistance and beta-cell function; beta cells are the pancreatic cells that produce insulin
- Total cholesterol
- CRP and PGE2, both markers of inflammation
Study researchers observed no significant differences in HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C), LDL-cholesterol (LDL-C) and TNFα between the ginger and placebo groups.
Overall, ginger consumption improved insulin sensitivity and led to beneficial changes in some fractions of the lipid profile, along with reducing CRP and PGE2 in type 2 diabetic patients. Therefore study researchers concluded that ginger can be considered an effective treatment for prevention of type 2 diabetes and the many health complications associated with it.