Dr Brunilda Nazario verified that flavourful, low-calorie drinks are worth enjoying when you have type 2 diabetes. One such example is a cold brew that you typically enjoy hot. It is cold tea, which you can add a cinnamon stick to, hence the brown tinge in the water. Dietician Jullian Kuala agrees, who said tea has been associated with a variety of health benefits due to its “powerful plant compounds”.
“For people with diabetes, tight blood sugar regulation is critical, and choosing beverages that optimise healthy blood sugar control is key,” said Kuala.
“Opting for calorie-free or very low-calorie beverages, like unsweetened tea, over sugary beverages like soda and sweetened coffee drinks is an excellent way to optimise diabetic control.
“Plus, some tea varieties contain plant compounds that fight cellular damage and reduce inflammation and blood sugar levels, making them a great choice for people with diabetes.”
Kuala referenced a research study conducted by scientists at Zhejiang University, China.
The researchers noted that the “chronic endocrine disease” (i.e. diabetes) results from “insulin secretory defect or insulin resistance”.
On the research paper, tea was described to contain “abundant polyphenols” that “showed anti-diabetic activity”.
However, it must be noted that such anti-diabetic effects have been contradictory against other research studies.
Nonetheless, Kuala highlighted the hydration benefits of drinking tea, which is “essential for every bodily process, including blood sugar regulation”.
“In fact, research shows that dehydration is associated with high blood sugar levels in people with diabetes,” added Kuala.
Some of the most recommended teas include: green, black and hibiscus tea, all the better if a cinnamon stick is added to the drink.
“Cinnamon is a popular spice that has reported anti-diabetic properties,” said Kuala.
Researchers from the School of Forensic and Investigative Sciences and School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, at the University of Central Lancashire, explained further.
“Cinnamon powder has demonstrated a beneficial effect on postprandial glucose homeostasis in animals and human models,” the scientists reported.
Chemical analysis demonstrated that cinnamon contains high anti-oxidant capacity due to its polyphenols.
The researchers states that there is “evidence” that cinnamon “could be beneficial for controlling glucose metabolism in non-diabetic adults during postprandial period”.
On the back of the research, Kuala added: “More human research is needed before strong conclusions on cinnamon’s effect on blood sugar levels can be made.”
Experts at the NHS revealed the most beneficial ways to help lower blood sugar levels.
This includes drinking “plenty of sugar-free fluids” to keep you hydrated, as well as exercising more often.
“Gentle, regular exercise such as walking can often lower your blood sugar level, particularly if it helps you lose weight,” the NHS elaborated.
It is also helpful to avoid foods that cause blood sugars to spike, such as cakes.