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Formerly Gold Coast Chiropractic

Are you looking for Alternatives to Gabapentin for Diabetic Neuropathy?

If you’ve been diagnosed with neuropathy, there’s probably a good chance you’ve been prescribed gabapentin (Neurontin).  And you aren’t the only one.  The use of gabapentin and pregabalin has more than tripled from 2002-2015, likely as a result of the opioid epidemic.  If you’ve found that you aren’t getting much relief from it, you aren’t the only one.  Almost 50% of patients treated with gabapentin did not show any significant improvements.  Even more concerning, not only did they not receive any meaningful benefits, they are now likely to have significant side effects that include somnolence (sleepiness) and dizziness. Falls are a huge risk factor with peripheral neuropathy and not only could gabapentin not be helping it may also increase your risk!  

Gabapentin was originally used for seizures.  It was found to enhance the function of GABA, an inhibitory neurotransmitter.  In seizures, there is an overactivity in the brain and neurons fire too much.  In peripheral neuropathy, the nerves are damaged by decreased blood flow and metabolic dysregulation among other processes. Gabapentin works to decrease the pain signals from your nerves to your brain.  It doesn’t “treat” the pain, it just covers it up.  In turn, many people need higher doses and have the same or lesser results. The underlying problem is still there, you just aren’t getting the signals anymore.


A Natural Gabapentin Alternative

So what can you do instead of taking Gabapentin? 

The most important thing to do is to maintain a healthy blood sugar.  You’ve likely been prescribed insulin or metformin to accomplish this goal.  However, there’s a proven better gabapentin alternative: Low carbohydrate diets. They’re so powerful, that in 2020, the president of the American Diabetes Association was able to use this diet to get off of metformin and insulin.  You may be able to as well.

Type II Diabetes is a disease of too much sugar driving too much insulin in your body.  After a while, the sugar overwhelms the body’s ability to produce insulin and other sources are needed.  Doesn’t it make sense to lower the sugar instead?  That you can easily do by decreasing the carbohydrates you eat.  In the body, carbohydrates are turned into sugar, not to mention the sugar that’s in so much of what we eat.  In labels, you’ll more likely see it as fructose or high fructose corn syrup.  While the subject of another post, sugar is terrible for your health.  That we have so much of it in our diet is based on studies 60 years ago that the sugar industry paid for.

The Gabapentin Alternative Diet

Google “low-carb diet” and you’ll get over 50 million results.  And that’s just in the last year.  Go to Amazon and there are over 10,000 books.  You can take your pick of a diet that would work best for you but here’s an simple rule:  

Avoid breads, pastas, grains and anything with high fructose corn syrup. On any packaged foods, check the nutrition label to ensure you’re actually picking up a low-carb item and if you’re craving pasta, opt for low-carb alternatives like zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash noodles. 

When starting any significant dietary changes, always consult your physician. Especially this one though because there’s a very good chance he or she will need to decrease some of your medications.


Consider a Chiropractor for Neuropathy Treatment in Chicago, IL

Sometimes though damage to the nerves has already been done (or you’d like expert guidance in this area). In those cases, working with a physician who treats this condition without the use of drugs and surgery is your best bet. Working with a neuropathy chiropractor could be a great alternative to gabapentin use. 

At our office, we work every day to get patients off of dangerous drugs, avoid risky surgeries, and get the freedom back that neuropathy has taken from them.  You can take our assessment below or schedule a complimentary screening to see if we can help.