Raw food and Gymnema

Just joined the group and very new to diabetes. I would be very interested in hearing from anyone who has tried the herb gymnema and/or tried a raw food lifestyle. I have been raw in the past and find it really makes me feel good but now I have been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes I am too scared to go back to a completely raw food diet, even though i feel it may help control the diabetes.

I have never heard of gymnema but am curious to hear your concerns about raw foods and diabetes. I was diagnosed nearly a year ago with LADA and have found raw food to be the best way to keep my BG in the near normal range, even without using insulin. I don’t drink fruit juices or eat a lot of fruit though, as these will cause a high BG reading. I sprout a lot of foods, including grains, beans, peas and lentils, and they are the basis of my diet. It is a way to eat a low carb diet without relying on a lot of meat, cheese and eggs. Welcome to tudiabetes! This is a great resource.


Just about every herbal treatment I’ve ever heard about for diabetes is a scam. The fresh leaves of gymnena may lower blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes. The powders sold in health food stores are reported to be worthless.

I was big into supposed “health foods” before my diabetes diagnosis a decade ago. Now I realize all those grains and sugary spritzers were making things much worse.

For diabetes, it is all about the carbs. Raw foods, if they are vegetables, have a lot of fiber that slows down digestion, but if you are Type 1 and don’t produce insulin you will still need to take insulin to cover every gram in those raw foods. Again, this is an approach that works better for type 2s who still have a sluggish insulin 2nd phase that kicks in an hour or so after they eat.

Be sure to separate out dietary advice for insulin resistant type 2s from that for people without insulin production. And accept that there are a lot of weasels in the world who lie about the powers of their supplements, charge huge amounts of money, and chuckle on the way to the bank at the thought of how easy it is to extract money from people with terrible diseases

Hey Katy,

First off welcome to the site, glad to have you :-).

As for Gymnema, I don’t have any experience with that but maybe others have.

As for Raw foods, I’m curious to why you’re scared and what your fears are? I can only speak from my experience and learning but I’m a 16 year Type-1 diabetic and for the last 2 months have been living a 100% Raw Food lifestyle (Notice I didn’t say “diet”). 3 months previous to that I was 50% Raw. I am now taking 60% less insulin than I used to and my BG levels are more regulated than I could have dreamed without a pump (I’m on Pen’s, Syringes for 14 years prior). My A1C’s have gone down almost 4% (I expect to go past 4% in my next test). At the moment I’m gong through some detox yet still have never felt better, more vibrant or with more energy in my life. Those are just a few of the benefits I’ve noticed so far and again I’m only 2 months in, I could go on but if you’d like to chat feel free to drop me a message.

In any case, everyone is different and will have a different experience regarding pretty much anything based on the life they’ve lived up until this moment. We also have a Raw Food Diabetics group on here, it’s just a handful of us but some of them might have had experiences with Gymnema.

I heard about Gymnema from the “Syndrome X” book, and Jenny is right about it only being useful for type 2 – it basically makes your body use insulin more efficiently, but it also makes sweet things taste less sweet. I take a gymnema supplement with meals, and I have definitely seen a difference in my bg levels.

As to “fresh” vs. “powder”, I can only say that I’m happy with the supplement, and can tell a difference if I haven’t taken it in a couple days. I get mine from Vitamin World in tablet form.

Dear Libby,

Thank you for your reply, it’s great to hear that you have had such success with a raw diet. I ate raw for three months a couple of years ago (when I had not been diagnosed with diabetes) and felt very good on it. I really want to go back to feeling as energised as I did back then, understandable I have been feeling very weak and tired the last year.

As I told a lot of my friends and family that I had been diagnosed with diabetes, I could tell that a lot of them thought it may be linked to the fact that I only ate raw food for a while! My boyfriends parents even asked if I had diabetes because I was a vegetarian! Which we had a right giggle over!

My main hesitation with embracing a raw food lifestyle again is that I had not come across anyone with type one diabetes who was on raw food (only type 2). it’s interesting that you say that you use a lot of sprouts as I have been thinking that if I did go back to raw, then I would have to base my diet on these, as it is very easy to over do the fruit on a raw food diet.

Thank you again

Hi Marston,

It’s really good to hear from someone that’s doing so well on a raw lifestyle, YEAH! Raw food rocks! Where is the raw food diabetic group - I can’t find it.

Thanks for inspiring me!

Dear Michelle,

Thank you for the feedback, I have a really good paper on gymnema being good for type one somewhere, I am going to try and find it and upload it - if I can?

Thank you.

Hey Katy,

Rock on indeed! :smiley:

Well we have this group here: http://tudiabetes.com/group/rawfooddiabetics

And I JUST found this other great Ning Raw Food Social Network, 1000+ really great people: http://www.giveittomeraw.com/

And on that I created a sub-group also called rawfooddiabetics: http://www.giveittomeraw.com/group/rawfooddiabetics

I’ll definitely be seeing you around, drop me a line any time :slight_smile:

I’ve been dabbling in the raw, and in fact, I’m expecting the dehydrator to arrive today (yay!) so maybe that will make it more than just a dabble. I find that when I have totally raw days, my blood sugar levels are so freaking fantastic and my bolus insulin is quite small. I don’t really limit fruit, just the kinds of fruit I eat. I also gorge myself on big salads as I love the lettuce. I found a great recipe sight that has a forum board. It’s http://www.goneraw.com and there is a Type 1 on the boards. I can’t remember her name, though. The only problem with those boards is that there are a lot of folks who keep saying you can cure Type 1 diabetes using the raw food diet. Apparently a prominent raw foodist claims she cured her teenage son of Type 1 using the raw diet, and the community seems to just believe her. But for the most part, the people there are quite lovely and open. And the recipes are quite varied and lovely.

Hi Kimberly,

Thank you for your post, it’s really encouraging to see that raw is working for you, very inspirational!

Good luck with the dehydrator, I got one about a year ago and they’re great fun. One of the best things you can do in them is crackers. Here is a link to a good recipe of how to make flax crackers from a really good raw food coach Karen Knowler. I love her recipes as they are very easy and the way she talks you through them is excellent.


Katy x

As stated in the other post, gymnema helps us type twos more than a type one. Most herbs and other supplements, like cinnamon, for example, help our insulin get our insulin resistant cells to cooperate allowing more glucose to enter through the cell walls. Many, if not most, (pure) type ones don’t have insulin resistance. Don’t think that a type one can’t develop insulin resistance, though. It does happen. It’s vitally important to keep your body as healthy as is possible with a healthy diet and exercise routine. This way, the foods you take in are less likely to turn into the dreaded fat that has been linked to insulin resistance. I’ve listed a number of supplements on my diabetes info page, but none are likely to help you more than a good diet with regular exercise to keep your body working as efficiently as possible.

The most recent studies of cinnamon which were NOT conducted by Dr. Anderson’s team showed it to be ineffective for Type 2s.

My own experiments with cinnamon showed that it provoked a dramatic blood sugar spike followed by a reactive lowering. The high was higher than anything I had seen in 7 years of diabetes testing. It was well before 1 hour so might have been missed with conventional testing. A lowering achieved by pushing my blood sugar up over 275 is NOT healthy. Few people on alt.support.diabetes reported any positive effects from cinnamon either.

Studies run by people with financial interests in the substance under investigation must be approached with enormous caution. The earlier studies were done by Dr. Anderson’s team and Dr. Anderson has some cinnamon-related patents.

Without any “ultra scientific controlled study”, I’ve personally used Cinnamon for this and had fairly good results. I saw some moderate drops and regulation in my BG though now I’ve integrated it into my weekly diet so I’m used to it (I use the highest quality, organic and untreated cinnamon sticks I can find). Again, not super ultra “controlled” tests or anything, thats just what I found for myself.

I guess it just goes to show how everyone will respond different and has a different levels of insulin resistance/toxicity. (for example, the different results Jenny above had for herself).

How do you use fenugreek? I have tried sprouting it but find it to be horribly bitter.

Judith…what a nice vision…you looking out for the tribe! I have a dear friend with fibromyalgia and would love to be able to pass on the name of something that has brought you some relief. She also has chronic fatique and pernicious anemia…quite the plethora of auto-immunes.

I hope this finds you well. I look forward to reading more from you,

could someone please tell me where I could get the fresh leaves of gymnema. also whether has anyone tried bitter melon (fresh) drink?

Bitter melon is “very spicy!” lOL! hot spicy! As with all herbs and spices it is something for us as individuals to check out how it works for us. For me, it did help drop my number as it was fresh from the store.(thinking back on it… as I wasnt into hot/spicy so much then… maybe in a capsule would still be good.)

Hello MeadowLark:
I have juiced fresh Bitter melon in the past and it yes it stings. Another friend of mine discovered that boiling the melon, cooling it down and then consuming it, is quite palatable. This way one can keep a jug of boiled juice in the fridge and save the hassale of doing it each day. the entire week is covered. Apparantly it works.

Yes, capsules are also available and its quite cheap. it works out to about $3 a bottle.

Thanks for the email. please keep me posted.

On a side line. Another relative of mine, went on a almost vegetable diet. Salads for lunch and dinner. BBQ fish or chicken was added maybe on alternative days. This kept the level almost even and way down the 7.

I eat mostly raw, live food (sprouted greens, grains and pulses) and my BG has gone down to completely normal levels. I have discontinued my use of insulin except for when I eat out or eat higher carb cooked meals. This morning my fasting BG was 76. After breakfast of sprouted whole grains, toasted nuts, fresh strawberries and whole milk yogurt, and a short walk, my BG was 72! This was at one hour. I don’t think this diet has cured me. I have LADA (Type 1) and still have some pancreas function. If I eat high carb processed food, my one hour number is up around 180.