Are you diabetic? Ayurveda is here to help! Ayurvedic treatment for diabetic neuropathy is one of the most underrated yet powerful treatments.
Do you feel numbness and tingling in your hands and legs often? If these symptoms are followed by tiredness, muscular cramps and indigestion, it is time to seek medical help. These signs indicate diabetic neuropathy.
Diabetic people have the tendency to develop neuropathy. It is a condition in which the peripheral nerves get damaged in the body due to diabetes. It makes you experience tingling or pain in your feet or hands generally. Although it commonly affects feet and hands, it can potentially afflict any part of your body.
Almost half the people with diabetes are susceptible to developing diabetic neuropathy with time. It can occur either due to type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Most of the people with nerve damage are unaware of this condition, till it is diagnosed by the doctor during routine checkup.
Symptoms of Diabetic Neuropathy
The symptoms of diabetic neuropathy vary from person to person. The damage to the nerves may happen in any part of the body. These symptoms generally come up in cases of diabetes that are more than 25 years old. Here are some of common signs of nerve damage due to diabetes:
- Pain, numbness, tingling in hands, feet, arms, thighs and legs
- Degeneration of muscles in feet or hands
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Nausea, vomiting or indigestion
- Erectile dysfunction in men
- Vaginal dryness in women
- Urinary problems
- Dizziness due to drop in blood pressure after suddenly standing up
- Sharp pain or cramps in the body
These symptoms of diabetic neuropathy are not comprehensive. There are different types of diabetic neuropathy with varying symptoms.
What causes Diabetic Neuropathy?
Diabetic neuropathy is basically caused by prolonged high blood glucose levels in the body. However, the nerve damage happens due to the combinations of other factors too. They are:
- Unhealthy lifestyle:
a) An unhealthy lifestyle consisting of a diet lacking in nutritional value and no physical workouts may lead to diabetic neuropathy.
b) Binging on fast food, processed food and high calorie and oily foods may make you obese and cause nerve damage. Low metabolism due to lack of exercise is another triggering factor.
c) Smoking and consuming alcohol in any form are also immensely responsible for causing diabetic nerve damage.
- Metabolic factors:
a) Having a medical history of uncontrolled high blood sugar levels is another major trigger of diabetic neuropathy.
b) Abnormal blood fat levels and low level of insulin in your body are potential reasons for causing nerve damage in diabetics.
c) Hypertension is another risk factor for this condition.
- Neurovascular factors:
a) With high levels of blood sugar in your body, the blood vessels that carry healthy nutrients and oxygen to the nerves get damaged. This causes symptoms of diabetic neuropathy.
b) Inflammation of nerves may also make you develop symptoms of diabetic neuropathy.
- Genetic disposition:
If you have a genetic history of diabetic neuropathy running in your family, then you are also prone to developing it.
If you are diabetic and over 40 years of age, symptoms of diabetic neuropathy have a higher chance of showing up.
Now that we know the major causes of diabetic neuropathy, it will be useful to know about the different types of diabetic neuropathies and how you can diagnose and treat them.
How to identify different types of diabetic neuropathy?
Diabetic neuropathy is of different types. Their common signs and symptoms are as follows:
A. Peripheral Neuropathy:
As the name implies, it affects the peripheral areas of your body. It includes toes, feet, legs, thighs, hands and arms. Peripheral neuropathy can cause ulcers which if ignored can cause amputation.
Its common symptoms are:
- Tingling sensation
- Loss of sensitivity
- A burning feeling
- Painful cramps
- Losing body balance
B. Autonomic Neuropathy:
It affects the functions of your bowel and bladder, digestion, perspiration and sexual response. If left untreated, autonomic neuropathy can lead to a condition of unawareness of hypoglycemia. This is a very dangerous condition where diabetics do not experience symptoms of low blood sugar levels anymore.
This neuropathy also adversely affects the nerves that are related to your heart and its blood vessels, lungs and eyes.
C. Proximal Neuropathy:
This type of neuropathy affects your hips, thighs, buttocks and weakens your legs. It causes muscular weakness and pain. It generally happens in type 2 diabetics and afflicts the elderly.
D. Focal Neuropathy:
It makes any nerve or a bunch of nerves weak in the body that causes pain and weakness in muscles. Focal neuropathy may cause conditions like retinopathy, double vision, focus problem, pain behind the eye, paralysis, lower back pain and other painful conditions.
Ayurvedic treatment for diabetic neuropathy – What is the best way to prevent Diabetic Neuropathy?
Diabetic neuropathy can be prevented by proper diabetes management. By keeping your blood glucose levels under control, the risk for developing neuropathies due to diabetes goes down. It helps protect your nerves from getting damaged. Ayurvedic treatment for diabetic neuropathy involves home remeedies and ayurvedic medicines used in combination.
DIY Remedies to counter diabetic neuropathy!
- Make your nerves strong:
Mix 300 ml carrot juice and 200 ml spinach juice. Drink this mixture 2-3 times a week. It will help alleviate the pain and strengthen the nervous system.
- Use essential oils:
Applying aromatherapy helps relax your muscles and relieves pain. Essential oil extracts of lavender and geranium are beneficial. You may rub a few drops of essential oil on your feet and hands or add a few drops to your bathing water.
- Add supplements:
Taking Vitamin B supplements immensely helps boost your nervous system. Consult your health care expert for the recommended dosage suited to your condition.
- Be active:
Exercise daily. It will help improve blood circulation and oxygen flow to your legs and feet. Walking will ease the cramps and pain, if done on a regular basis. It will also help lower high blood sugar levels. So, take a walk daily for a minimum of 20 minutes.
- Lose excess weight:
Shed the excess weight to keep your cholesterol and blood glucose levels under control. You can combine a healthy diet and workout regimen to attain and maintain your ideal body weight.
- Take warm water baths:
A warm bath relaxes tired muscles and helps you relax. Blood flow improves to your legs and other body parts thereby alleviating pain. Remember to check the water temperature with your hands instead of your foot before stepping into a bath tub.
- Take good care of your feet:
- Keep your feet and nails clean to avoid infection.
- If there is any wound or cut in the feet seek medical care immediately.
- Wear socks and comfortable shoes to protect your feet from infection and injury.
- Avoid doing activities that may injure your feet in any way.
- Start eating healthy:
Include a lot of roughage and nutrients to your diet. Fresh fruits, leafy greens, salads, soups, juices, nuts, seeds, low fat dairy products, whole grains and cereals go a long way in ensuring a healthy body. They are full of antioxidants that prevent nerve damage and control your blood sugar levels.
- Quit smoking and alcohol:
Smokers are more likely to experience poor circulation in their feet than diabetics who do not smoke. Same goes for alcoholics. So, quit smoking and drinking habits immediately to cut down the risk for diabetic neuropathy.
- Try capsaicin:
You may apply capsaicin cream to your feet and hands to relieve pain due to diabetic neuropathy. Some people may experience skin irritation as a side effect.
Ayurvedic Medicine for Diabetic Neuropathy
- Flaxseed oil: Add flaxseed oil in your diet. Flaxseed is full of omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3 essential fatty acids reduce inflammation of nerves that helps in preventing nerve damage and even helps in healing damaged nerves.
- Ginger tea: Ginger helps in lowering nerve inflammation and helps in healing nerve damage. You may sip ginger tea regularly. It is very easy to make. Boil a cup of water and add chopped ginger slices to it. Let it steep for 5-10 minutes and your tea is ready.
- Fennel seeds: Chew fennel seeds to improve your digestion that gets adversely affected due to diabetic neuropathy.
- Castor oil: Castor oil helps treat foot neuropathy. Apply a cotton flannel soaked in castor oil on the affected body area. You may also take it in gel form after consulting your doctor.
- Sugar lowering herbs: Herbs that help lower your blood sugar levels are beneficial in preventing nerve damage due to diabetic neuropathy. Holy basil, jamun and fenugreek are immensely favorable in keeping your blood glucose levels under check. Take 100 gm fenugreek seeds, 100 gm bay leaves, 150 gm jamun seeds and 250 gm belpatra. Dry them in the sun and powder them separately. Now mix all the powders together. Take 1 tsp of this mixture before every meal for next 2 months to lower your blood sugar levels. It will help prevent nerve damage due to diabetes and improve your diabetes management.
- Ashwagandha: Ashwagandha herb helps relieve hypertension, nervous disorders, poor eyesight and weakness due to diabetes. It improves your wellness and relieves body ache in diabetic neuropathy.
- Chandraprabha Vati: It is an ayurvedic formulation beneficial in alleviating pain in legs, neck and back, heals diabetic nerve damage, counters diabetic weakness, lowers obesity and improves metabolism of glucose in your body. For dosage, consult an ayurvedic doctor.
- Shilajit: Shilajit helps relieve weakness due to diabetes, normalizes blood sugar levels, improves fertility and benefits in neuropathy and nerve weakness.
- Indian gooseberry and turmeric: Mix 75 gms dried gooseberry (deseeded) powder and 25 gms turmeric powder. Take 1 tsp of this mixture with warm water one hour after dinner at bed time or early morning on an empty stomach. After 1 hour you can eat breakfast. You can use this remedy for 2-3 months. It will help strengthen your nerves and also lower and maintain reduced blood sugar levels.
1. Controlling high blood sugar
2. Prevents complications due to diabetes.
Nirogam’s Diabetic Kit consists a month’s dose of
- Salacia – O -60 capsules
- Organic cinnamon powder – 100gm
- Gluco balance BCM-95 – 60 capsules
- Cinnamon powder – 1 tsp with warm water in the morning on an empty stomach.
- Salacia-O capsules – 1 capsule before breakfast and dinner with warm water
- Gluco Balance BCM-95 – 1 capsule after breakfast and dinner with warm water
Diabetic neuropathy is irreversible. The best way to counter it is to lower the risk of developing it by keeping a tab on your blood sugar levels and managing it by proper diet and exercise. Even if you develop diabetic neuropathy with age or unhealthy lifestyle, then take adequate measures to control it. Ayurveda is beneficial in managing symptoms of diabetic neuropathy without side effects. If you find any signs of this condition coming up, do not waste time and seek medical help. In this way, ayurvedic treatment for diabetic neuropathy can genuinely help an individual from sufferring and pain