Three Natural Ways to Manage Diabetic Neuropathy

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Filed Under: Blood Sugar, Diabetes Complications
Last Reviewed 02/06/2014

Diabetic neuropathy is a form of nerve damage that affects many people living with diabetes.  In addition to being quite painful, it can also be debilitating.  Fortunately, there are three effective, natural remedies to treat this common diabetes complication.

Lipoic acid, also called alpha lipoic acid, is an extremely powerful natural antioxidant. High doses of lipoic acid (in the 600 mg range) have been shown in several studies to be an effective therapy for diabetic neuropathy, reducing pain, and improving function in affected patients. Aim for 600-1,200 mg daily, depending on your degree of neuropathy.

Evening primrose oil
, which contains the essential fatty acid gamma linolenic acid, also benefits nerves damaged by diabetes and reduces associated pain. In a landmark double-blind study carried out in seven medical centers, 480 mg of evening primrose oil taken daily for one year resulted in improvements in symptoms of neuropathy in both type 1 and type 2 diabetics. Other studies have utilized doses of up to 6,000 mg per day with good results. Start with 500–1,500 mg per day.

Potent daily multivitamin/mineral supplement and fish oil. Because oxidative stress plays a role in diabetic neuropathy, you need to take a potent multivitamin and mineral complex that contains the following nutrients in the suggested doses: vitamin E (at least 300 IUs), vitamin B6 (150 mg), and vitamin B12 (1,500 mcg). Since inflammation is also a factor, take 2–8 grams of high-quality fish oil.

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