Diabetes is a common chronic disease in which the body is unable to process blood glucose. In the United Kingdom (UK) alone, a conservative estimate puts the number of diagnosed diabetic patients at 3.5 million (m) - and this startling figure only includes individuals who have received a formal diagnosis. It is predicted that another 549,000 individuals are suffering from this debilitating condition but have not been diagnosed yet.
If you do the math, you will realize that a shockingly large proportion of UK’s population- almost 6 percent - is suffering from diagnosed or undiagnosed diabetes:
This means that 1 in every 16 people in UK have diabetes.
While diabetes is a lifelong condition with no cure, it can still be managed with a combination of medication and lifestyle changes. Many diabetic individuals also turn to alternative therapies, holistic healing methods and natural remedies to manage their condition.
Black seed oil is one such ancient herbal remedy that has shown promise for diabetes management. While using black seed oil for diabetes cannot cure it altogether, several studies have revealed that using organic black seed oil supplements may have an overall positive effect on the health of diabetic patients.
But before we look into the potential benefits of black seed oil for diabetes, let’s take a closer look at what black seed oil is and how it is obtained.
Black Seed Oil
Black seed oil, also known as black cumin seed oil, is a wonderfully potent natural oil that is extracted from the seeds of Nigella Sativa, a seasonal plant that is mostly grown in Western Asia, Middle East and Eastern Europe.
We have been using the seeds of Nigella Sativa as a remedy for several ailments for centuries now. Black seeds have also been fulfilling cooking needs due to their distinct aroma and strong flavour. Since extremities in temperature and pressure can denature the chemical structure of potent compounds present in the black seed oil, black cumin oil needs to be extracted with care.
Black seeds are often cultivated with care and then cold-pressed to obtain pure, raw and potent black cumin seed oil. The best black seed oil for diabetics is the one which contains no added preservatives and is highly volatile; higher the volatility of the oil, the stronger its healing properties will be.
Contrary to the popular perception, Diabetes Mellitus (more commonly referred to as just ‘diabetes’), is a group of metabolic disorders, not a single disease. Diabetic individuals often suffer from hyperglycemia or high sugar levels because their body is either unable to produce or respond to insulin.
Insulin, a hormone produced in the pancreas, is essential for basic metabolic functions like the conversion of glucose from our food into energy and its storage. People who suffer from impaired insulin function are unable to convert blood glucose into energy. This overturns the blood glucose balance and results in peaking sugar levels, which over the long run can cause serious health issues. Individuals with diabetes are either unable to produce enough (or any) insulin or their bodies become resistant to it.
The most common types of diabetes include Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes and Gestational diabetes:
Type 1 diabetes, also known as ‘juvenile onset diabetes’ because it usually begins in childhood or early adolescence, is an autoimmune condition in which the body fails to produce insulin to maintain blood sugar balance. This occurs because the immune system targets and attacks insulin-producing cells (called ‘islets of Langerhans’) present in the pancreas. Impaired insulin production results in high blood glucose and symptoms such as fatigue, dehydration and chronic weight loss.
Diabetic individuals require additional insulin shots to bring down their blood sugar level. They also need to monitor their blood sugar levels and make lifestyle changes to remain healthy.
Type 2 Diabetes:
Type 2 diabetes, also known as ‘adult onset diabetes’, is a medical condition in which the body either fails to produce enough insulin or grows resistant to the hormone. Developing a resistance means that the receptors in our body require more insulin to produce the same effect. To compensate for this lack of sensitivity, the body goes into overdrive and overproduces insulin but even then, there is barely enough to sustain a healthy sugar level. Prolonged overproduction of insulin can burn out pancreatic cells and cause health complications.
Type 2 is the most common form of diabetes and about 95 percent of diabetic adults suffer from it. Type 2 diabetes can be managed by making lifestyle changes, formulating diet plans, taking medication and reducing weight. People with type 2 diabetes may also require insulin injections.
Gestational diabetes is a temporary form of diabetes characterized by high blood sugar levels during pregnancy. The peak in blood sugar levels is caused by the body’s inability to produce enough insulin to meet extra needs during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes often disappears after child-birth but women who have experienced it are also a high risk group for Type 2 diabetes. Gestational diabetes can be detected through blood screening and managed.
Why Use Black Seed Oil for Diabetes?
Thymoquinone, one of the active compounds present in black seed oil has hypoglycemic properties, meaning it lowers sugar levels in the blood. Preliminary studies have revealed that supplementing regular diet with black seed oil may have potential benefits for diabetic people. However, more research is required to explore the effects of organic black seed oil on human body. Here’s what we know about black seed oil and diabetes:
- Black Seed Oil Regulates Blood Sugar Levels
The hypoglycemic effects of black seed oil have caught the attention of researchers and diabetic patients alike. Studies indicate that black seed oil may help prevent the onset of diabetes and reduce severity of the condition by improving the level of glucose in the bloodstream.
A study conducted to investigate the effects of black seed and medication combination indicated that black seed oil reduces blood glucose levels by increasing insulin production and increased sensitivity to the hormone. The study also found that black seed stimulated cellular activity and aided in the process of insulin production.
Another overview published in the British Journal of Pharmaceutical Research found that black seed oil can promote the regeneration and activity of insulin-producing cells. Two studies conducted on diabetic rats in 2013 and 2014 also confirmed that black seed supplements reduce glucose levels in blood and enhance insulin production.
The hypoglycemic effects of black seed oil can benefit both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetics, especially when pure black seed oil is used. Since black seed oil reduces damage to insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, it may help with Type 1 diabetes management. Black seed oil may also be advantageous to Type 2 diabetics because it enhances the sensitivity of insulin receptors.
- Pure Black Seed Oil Improves Cholesterol Levels
One of the most common effects of diabetes is that it lowers the levels of good cholesterol (or high-density lipoprotein) and increases bad cholesterol (low density lipoprotein) in the body. Bad cholesterol can cause a cholesterol buildup in the arteries and increase the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Black seeds, particularly pure black seed oil, is loaded with mono and poly unsaturated fatty acids which are deemed essential for healthy functioning of the body. These essential fatty acids improve the levels of good cholesterol in the blood.
- Black Cumin Seed Oil Maintains Blood Pressure
Potassium, an essential mineral, is required by the body because it plays an important role in maintaining blood pressure. Potassium levels in diabetic individuals tend to plummet and cause deflections in blood pressure. Black cumin seeds are a rich source of potassium so they can help combat potassium deficiency in diabetic patients and maintain blood pressure.
- Black Seed Oil Combats Inflammation
Recent research indicates that internal inflammation may increase the risk of Type 2 diabetes. When diabetes is developing, the patient becomes resistant to insulin. Lowered sensitivity to insulin can also cause internal inflammation which can, in turn, aggravate insulin resistance.
Using black seed oil for diabetes can also help on this front because black seed oil is replenished with natural anti-inflammatory compounds and antioxidants. These compounds can reduce internal swelling and damage caused by free radicals.
- Black Seed Oil and Weight Loss
Obesity is a risk factor for diabetes. People with type 2 diabetes are often required to lose weight because it helps with diabetes management. Black seed oil can help with weight loss by curbing appetite and improving digestive health. It can also boost the metabolism and burn calories.
- Black Seed Oil for Overall Health
Black cumin seeds also contain essential compounds our body needs in trace amounts to carry out basic functions and boost immunity. Diabetic patients, especially those suffering from Type 2 diabetes can include black cumin seeds or black seed oil in their diet to harness the benefits of these compounds. Black seed oil is rich in iron and loaded with vitamin C, which strengthens the immune system. Taking black cumin supplements can boost the overall health of diabetic patients.
Where Can I Find the Best Black Seed Oil in the United Kingdom (UK)?
At Nature’s Blends, we believe in bringing you nature’s finest and that is why our cold-pressed oils are 100% natural and preservative-free. Our homemade black seed oil is extraction from assorted Nigella Sativa seeds sourced from Ethiopia where black cumin grows indigenously. Our oils are fully organic and raw because they are not processed and free of additives. Visit now to find black seed products in UK.