Diabetes, describes a group of metabolic diseases in which the person has high blood glucose, either because insulin production is inadequate, or because the body’s cells do not respond properly to insulin, or both. People with high blood sugar will typically experience polyuria frequent urination, increased thirst and increased hungry. In Chinese medicine, we break this down into three patterns: upper (wasting and thirsting) characterized by Lung heat drying up the moisture leading to increased thirst. Middle (wasting and thirsting) characterized by Stomach heat damaging fluid, leading to excess hunger, or lower (wasting and thirsting) characterized by Kidney deficiency, leading to increased unrination. Patients with high blood glucose commonly show signs of damp accumulation and Spleen deficiency. Overall, the clinical presentation of patients with diabetes can be summarized as yin deficiency with damp and heat.

Chinese herbs can be very helpful in minimizing some of the symptoms in this situation. When looking for a modern day formula to: nourish Lung, stomach, and kidney yin, clear deficiency fire, and dry dampness Look for on containing one or more of the following herbs:

Huang Qi – strengthen the Spleen and enhance its function of transportation and transformation.

Shan Yao – strengthens the digestion, and astringes the qi helping to calm excessively frequent urination.

Xi Yang Shen – greatly replenishes the vital essence of the body and promotes the secretion of body fluids to treat polydypsia.

Shu Di Huang – Tonifies kidney and liver yin to increase body fluids and help replenish dryness.