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Herbs, Vitamins, and More for Diabetes

Looking for more than traditional western medicine to treat your diabetes? Here are some suggestions, but remember to consult your doctor first.

Beyond Blood Sugar

Martin Stevens, MD, a researcher at the University of Michigan, recently finished a study (also funded by NCCAM) of the effects of Reiki, a traditional Eastern healing art, on people suffering from painful diabetic neuropathy.

Reiki is similar to therapeutic touch, but it's not hands-on. It's based on the idea of manipulating energy fields that practitioners believe surround the body in order to relieve pain or cure illness.

At present, Stevens and his colleagues are analyzing data gathered in the study, and they hope to present results at next year's annual ADA meeting. "There is a suggestion that there was a benefit, at least in some of the patients," Stevens says.

He says he thinks that Reiki could, in theory, act on the brain's pain centers and alter one's perception of pain. That could be seen in imaging studies of the brain, using technology such as MRI or CAT scans.

"We can actually directly test that, and we propose to do that if this study proves to be positive," Stevens says.

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Reviewed on November 18, 2003

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Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.

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