An amino acid sold in supplement form, L-cysteine is sometimes touted as a natural treatment for diabetes (a potentially life-threatening disease that affects 8.3 percent of the U.S. population). Also available in a number of foods (including meat, eggs, and dairy products), L-cysteine is said to aid in blood sugar control.
Although research on the health effects of taking L-cysteine supplements is very limited, preliminary studies suggest that L-cysteine may offer some protection against diabetes. In tests on animals, for instance, scientists have found that L-cysteine may keep blood sugar in check and fight insulin resistance.
To control diabetes, it's essential to follow a balanced diet, exercise regularly, maintain a healthy weight, and stick with the treatment regimen prescribed by your health care provider. Some research shows that drinking black tea and maintaining optimal levels of vitamin D may also aid in diabetes management. In addition, there's some evidence that natural remedies like ginseng and cinnamon may be beneficial to people with diabetes.