Sunflower Seeds May Improve Blood Sugar Control in Diabetics

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By Agata P. | Updated: Mar 26, 2024

Sunflower Seeds May Improve Blood Sugar Control in Diabetics

Type 2 diabetes, a global health concern, necessitates vigilant management of blood glucose levels. While lifestyle modifications and medication are standard treatments, emerging research points to natural dietary elements, including green teagoldenberries, and avocado as beneficial adjuncts in glucose regulation.1 In this clinical trial, researchers explored the effects of sunflower on blood sugar levels and other health markers in people with type 2 diabetes.

The Study

Published in the Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research, this research study involved sixty participants, between the ages of 45 and 55, with type 2 diabetes. They were split into two groups, both of which received diet counseling. In addition to that, the intervention group also consumed 2 grams of slightly roasted sunflower seeds per day. The trial lasted for six months. 

Over a period of six months, researchers tracked changes in their anthropometric measurements (such as height, weight, and blood pressure) and biochemical parameters (including fasting blood sugar, cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL, and HDL).

The Results

Participants who incorporated sunflower seeds into their diet exhibited a substantial decrease in fasting blood sugar levels, from an average of 186.2 mg/dl to 109.9 mg/dl, outperforming the control group.

Moreover, this group experienced an increase in HDL cholesterol, the 'good cholesterol' that aids in removing harmful LDL cholesterol from the bloodstream.

What Does this Mean?

This study underscores the benefits of sunflower seeds for diabetes. Recognized for their low glycemic index and abundance in fiber, healthy fats, and vital nutrients, sunflower seeds offer a natural approach to enhance diabetes management and support cardiovascular health.

Incorporating sunflower seeds into meals is simple—sprinkle them over salads, blend into yogurts, or mix into trail snacks. Moderation is key due to their caloric density, and opting for unsalted varieties helps manage sodium intake. Complementing a diet with other glycemic-friendly herbs like beans, leafy greens, oats, and quinoa further supports diabetes management.

Sources

  • Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research, Effects of Sunflower Seeds on fasting Blood Glucose in Diabetes Mellitus Type 2 Patients, 2016

Footnotes:

  1. Mayo Clinic. (2024). Diabetes management: how lifestyle, daily routine affect blood sugar. Retrieved March 24, 2024, from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diabetes/in-depth/diabetes-management/art-20047963