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Some people use supplements for diabetes in addition to their standard treatment -- such as garlic, omega-3 fatty acids, and magnesium -- because each one claims to provide a benefit in relieving the disease. However, risks and side effects can be associated with these, so people who use supplements need to let their healthcare providers know what they are doing.
Many different supplements for diabetes are on the market today that claim to provide a benefit. Some people use these supplements as complementary or alternative treatments for diabetes in addition to their standard diabetes treatment. This includes herbal medicines.
Although some supplements may be effective, others can be ineffective or even harmful.
People who use diabetes supplements need to let their healthcare providers know what they are doing.
This article focuses on several supplements that people try when looking for alternative diabetes medications, including:
There is limited scientific evidence on the effectiveness of dietary supplements as alternative treatments for diabetes. The evidence that is available is not sufficiently strong enough to prove that any supplements or herbal remedies for diabetes discussed in this article have benefits for type 2 diabetes or its associated complications. A possible exception may be the use of omega-3 fatty acids to lower triglyceride levels.
If you decide to use supplements for diabetes, you should know that what you see on the label may not accurately reflect what is in the bottle. Some herbal supplements, for example, have been found to be contaminated; some tests of herbal supplements have found that the contents did not match the labeled dose on the bottle.