beans and diabetes

birdboyhg(PA 6a)April 15, 2008

HI all. I usually just use gardenweb to trade plants, and I never noticed this page before. I took a class called Medicinal and Poisonous Plants at Lycoming College last semester and herbalism is one of my favorite topics. We learned that soluble fiber from "meaty" beans can greatly reduce, in mild cases even prevent, the need for insulin in diabetes. I was wondering if it was the fiber in the beans or if it was some secondary compound in the beans that causes this reduction of the sugar spike. Also we learned about milk thistle and its protective properties on the liver during amanita mushroom poisonings, but the professor never said what part of the plant was used. I am looking for the plant on the trade page, but I would like to know what part to use. I'm assuming small amounts taken as a tea would just have good general liver benefits. Thanks for your help and I look foreward to reading more on this page in the future.

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lucy(6)

What I learned about beans is that they are carbohydrates, and if you're diabetic, you need to regulate carbs very carefully, whether or not they also have fiber. The course you took may have been 'of interest', but certainly was not a medical one, and you need to follow your MD's instructions regarding your care and not be sidetracked by people who say they can cure who knows what with plants. You can do serious damage to yourself. It's one thing to drink a mild herbal tea on occasion for the aroma and possibly calming effects, but you don't want to mess with diabetes.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 4:50PM
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birdboyhg(PA 6a)

Yes, they do contain carbohydrates, but they contain other compounds as well. There are also many different kinds of carbohydrates and each is broken down differently. Jerusalem artichoke, for instance can be aten by diabetics while a potato can not. It is a different type of carbohydrate. Anyway, The class is intended for pre med students. As for curing who knows what with plants, know the majority of our current pharmaseuticals either come from plants and fungi or had come from plants before we figured out how to make them ourselves. Aspirin, Cumadin, Digoxin, taxol, quinine, morphine, vinblastine and vincristine, and o so many more. Also, some of the biggest problem drugs come from plants. Nicotine, opium, tetrahydrocannabinol(thc), cocaine, and o so many more. Plants have many importand secondary compounds and they must be used carefully. I don't have diabetes, but if I did, I would certainly try eating beans. If I had cancer I would use one the the many cancer treatments, that are interestingly not used in the US, but just about everywhere else on the planet. Im sorry, but im going to say it. Both of my grandmothers were nurses and they caught countless mistakes doctors made and saved many lives. I take what most doctors say with a grain of rice. I think more americans should study basic medicine, stop taking unnecessary pills, and start living better. I Am very passionate about medicine and I don't like america's healthcare system. I could go on, but...

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 9:19PM
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dbeautybug

The seeds of the milk thistle is what has the active medicinal ingredients. I am in no way an expert of any kind and I really enjoy reading all the post here but I would like to add something on the subject of the beans. I am 35 years old and have been been an insulin dependent diabetic for 30 years. Beans are considered a carbs and are a better choice than potatoes (which I can eat) what makes them so different is the rate in which they are absorbed. beans have fiber and other important nutrients as do potatoes but breakdown much slower so it keeps your glucose level somewhat of a constant level . Potatoes are considered a simple starch and gets absorbed very quickly so it causes you to have a rapid spike in your sugar level and if you have any problems producing insulin sometimes your body doesn't respond quick enough, or responds too quickly giving you too much insulin, then again your body recognises a low releases stored calories to make it go up and now you end up with a high bloodsugar!
I have been to many doctors and I'm very sad to say the majority are not educated on the most updated information as far as diabetic care. I now see someone in New york at Cornell Weil and what I have learned in the last year is totally new and different than what I've been taught by others. Natural whole foods is the way that I go. Along with wheatgrass, alfalfa powder, low fat, low dairy.
I respect everyones opinion and I love to feel your passion for being healthier but there are so many variables involved with diabetes and I would never advise someone to not first consult with their doctor, nurse practitioner, herbalist or someone very experienced to help you on your road to being healthier

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 10:36PM
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rusty_blackhaw(6a)

Diet is well known to be important in controlling diabetes, and there's some evidence that diets high in vegetables and fruits can lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease in diabetics.

That said, I question whether beans alone can be trusted to dramatically lower or eliminate the need for insulin in patients currently on the drug. Maybe birdboyhg can point to us to any clinical studies demonstrating this.

As to protecting the liver, the most effective general strategy is to limit drinking and intake of drugs (pharmaceutical and herbal). The liver does very well at detoxification on its own and doesn't typically need artificial help.

"If I had cancer I would use one the the many cancer treatments, that are interestingly not used in the US, but just about everywhere else on the planet."

What are you referring to?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 9:05AM
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apollog

Many beans are rich in amylase inhibitors. These slow the break down of starches into sugars. So a meal with beans might help reduce the post digestive spike in sugars/insulin. Beans would not affect the absorption of simple sugars at all. As to whether it helps with diabetes or not, I don't know. You need to monitor your response while changing a single variable in your regime to see that.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 6:59PM
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natureguider

i have a sister that has diabetes and the doctor said lima beans and black beans had less carbs than say red beans
in any case she is limited to a half a cup for carb intake a day.

Here is a link that might be useful: e-natureguide

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 7:54PM
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birdboyhg(PA 6a)

Hello all. First, I just wanded to say that I don't have diabetes and am not looking for a treatment for anyone I know. I was just wondering if there are any significant secondary chemiclas in kidney, navy, blac, etc. beans. I definitely agree that before someone with diabetes decides to stop taking insulin and eat beans instead, they shoud see someone. I am also not saying I don't think doctors are useless or anything. I am saying that if a doctor told me to take whatever for high colesterol, I would try garlic first, or another natural, more mild, less side effect treatment first. After all, Cardiologists die from heart disease all the time. I really like the title of a book by Dr. Joel Wallach "Dead Doctors Don't Lie". Today's pharmaseuticals are not all they are said to be. Also plant medicines make sense if you are an evolutionist or creationist (poud to say I am the latter) Evolutionarily, plants have had to evolve to protect themselves against animals and so they have created the best secondary plant "poisons". Also A beneficient God ceated humans and would have made sure to create a treatment for any sickness on his earth. When it comes to cancer, Our bodies can usually take care of themselves and so, the first thing I would do if I got cancer would be to detoxify and start eating much healthier. In many countries, essiac is used in cancer treatment. In many countries medicinal mushrooms, including the reishi and cordyceps are used. reishi.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2008 at 8:15AM
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rusty_blackhaw(6a)

"Evolutionarily, plants have had to evolve to protect themselves against animals and so they have created the best secondary plant "poisons". Also A beneficient God ceated humans and would have made sure to create a treatment for any sickness on his earth."

I think you may not recognize the conflict between your first and second statements.

Plants evolved (or in your system of belief, were given) a variety of properties to protect themselves. Some of these have been adapted by mankind as beneficial treatments. Some are beneficial despite potentially fatal toxicity if misused (i.e. digitalis). Some are deadly poisonous without known medical benefit (i.e. ricin from castor beans).

Our bodies are doing a pretty lousy job of "taking care of themselves" if they develop cancer in the first place. We're doing a poor job of fighting the disease if we depend on debunked potions like essiac tea (which, while it may still be used in a number of countries, is also regarded as useless quackery by knowledgeable practitioners in those countries. More on this subject (and other quack cures) here.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2008 at 8:57AM
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birdboyhg(PA 6a)

No I understand the conflict. I am a biology major at Lycoming college and the evolutionary path is the one most of the profs go with, so to an evolutionist, that would make sense. To me, I belive God would have givn us a cure for any sickness that plagues the earth.

Genes play a part in getting cancer and I think America's TERRIBLE food industry does not help, any extra radiation from the sun because of a supposed thinning of the ozone, etc. They all play a part. I believe very strongly that essiac and reishi work.

Just because a studdy suggests a medicine does not work, doesn't mean they have shown the compound doesn't work, It shows the compound does not work in that dose or on that group of people, or......... You cannot perform a study on something and conclusively prove anything. In my mind if essiac or reishi worked for anyone, it is worth trying.

I kind of wish I never asked any question to begin with. I am not asking advice on what compounds should I take if I have cancer or diabetes. I don't care what anyone says, if I want to try it, I will research it and if it still looks plausible, I will try it, I will try it even if a doctor tells me it won't work. I don't really care about other people's opinion on whether or not it works, I JUST WANT TO KNOW WHAT SECONDARY COMPOUNDS ARE FOUND IN BEANS!!!!!!

    Bookmark   April 17, 2008 at 4:03PM
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trancegemini_wa(10b)

"I was wondering if it was the fiber in the beans or if it was some secondary compound in the beans that causes this reduction of the sugar spike."

most beans are low gi and are digested slowly therefore the blood sugar and insulin levels dont spike as much after eating these type of foods. I imagine what the lecturer was saying, is that these type of foods (not specifically beans but all low gi foods) can reduce the need for insulin or control the diabetes enough to get off insulin (what's called dietary controlled diabetes). I doubt if there is a magical cure in beans, but they are one of the best low gi foods for energy and they provide carbs and protein. I am on a low gi diet for diabetes and beans are a staple part of that.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2008 at 11:48AM
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trancegemini_wa(10b)

I also meant to say to specifically answer your question, it is the fibre in beans but more specifically the type of fibre, because it's "sticky" it slows down the enzyme action in the stomach so they are digested slowly. but there are many foods beyond beans which are equally as good for diabetics for other reasons as well but it comes down to the same thing - slowly digested carbs cause much lower blood sugar levels and much lower insulin responses.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2008 at 12:25PM
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eibren(z6PA)

Apollog already answered the question, above:

Posted by apollog (My Page) on Wed, Apr 16, 08 at 18:59

Many beans are rich in amylase inhibitors. These slow the break down of starches into sugars. ....

Beans would not affect the absorption of simple sugars at all.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 2:54AM
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oakleif(z6 AR)

I'm curious. How come the Amercan Diabetis Association recommends beans as a substitute for meat? Could eric not know it all about beans or just a little behind times.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 8:11PM
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brendan_of_bonsai(4b AK)

It is because they contain less saturated fat and total fat.

Meat and meat substitutes, such as soy products and cheese, are great sources of protein. The biggest difference among foods in this group is how much saturated fat and total fat they contain.

What are the best choices? The best choices are the cuts of meats and meat alternatives that are lower in saturated fat and calories

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 8:21PM
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oakleif(z6 AR)

Actually i'll take the ADA word over a lil boys. Have you checked out the hot topics forum yet? I'm thinking aboutlinking some of your posts there and asking for opionins on your temper tantrums. Did'nt luckygal call you down?
My apoligies to luckygal.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 8:35PM
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brendan_of_bonsai(4b AK)

The part in italics is quoted from the ADA, so if you don't believe what I say you don't believe what the ADA says.

I dare you to follow that link.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 8:48PM
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eibren(z6PA)

I think the Chinese actually make green bean tea for diabetes; not sure if it is the same substance in it or not...

There are so many duplicated sites out there now I could not find much basic information. :o(

    Bookmark   January 22, 2009 at 11:49PM
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silversword(9A)

Hi Eibren,
Here's a link to Chinese treatment of Diabetes:

http://acupuncture.com/conditions/diabetes2c.htm

Amazingly they had effective treatment for diabetes in 752, more than ten centuries ahead of Richard Thomas Williamson (1862-1937).

    Bookmark   January 23, 2009 at 1:12PM
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silversword(9A)

Hi Birdboy,

"Also we learned about milk thistle and its protective properties on the liver during amanita mushroom poisonings, but the professor never said what part of the plant was used. I am looking for the plant on the trade page, but I would like to know what part to use. I'm assuming small amounts taken as a tea would just have good general liver benefits."

I buy Milk Thistle in capsules at the grocery store. Using it in capsule form is said to be the most effective use of this product.

"The active ingredient, or liver-protecting compound in milk thistle is known as silymarin. This substance, which actually consists of a group of compounds called flavonolignands, helps repair liver cells damaged by alcohol and other toxic substances. Silymarin also keeps new liver cells from being destroyed by these same substances, reduces inflammation (important for people with liver inflammation or hepatitis), and has potent antioxidant effects.

Most milk thistle products are standardized preparations extracted from the fruits (seeds) of the plant. Most preparations are standardized to contain 70% to 80% of flavonolignans (silibinin, silychristin, and silydianin), collectively known as silymarin. "

Here's a link about Milk Thistle:
http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/milk-thistle-000266.htm

As an aside to naysayers who claim only an MD can treat diabetes, my stepmother had a severe case of diabetes and was able to modify her diet and exercise (over two years) to the point that she now is back to the "pre diabetes" stage of health. Her MD, previously against using anything "unverified" is amazed and constantly asking what she did.

Will it work/is it for everyone? No. Is it possible to alter one's habits to the point of reversing "un-curable" disease? YES!!!

Regarding beans:
I don't know what secondary compounds are found in beans, but it's the soluble fiber in the beans that make them effective. It does depend on the type of bean you are ingesting, not all beans are equal. You can achieve the same benefits by drinking psyllium husk or eating other foods high in soluble fiber. Here are a couple of links that may be interesting:

http://howtoprevent-heartdisease.com/fiber.php

http://www.aaccnet.org/cerealfoodsworld/samplepdfs/CFW-51-0016.pdf

http://www.medicinenet.com/fiber/page3.htm

http://www.ars.usda.gov/research/projects/projects.htm?ACCN_NO=408538&showpars=true&fy=2004

    Bookmark   January 23, 2009 at 2:19PM
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gringojay

A curiosity I recall, a USA agency (?name?) declared in 2007 (or 8 ?), that 3 of the top 5 anti-oxidant content food are bean vaieties - surprised me the musical fruit has it's own horn to toot!

    Bookmark   January 23, 2009 at 6:23PM
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