In the previous blog, we learned about the importance of maintaining balanced blood sugar levels and some of the issues that can arise if we don’t keep them within the normal range. Luckily, there are a number of ways that we can help to manage our blood sugar levels and keep them steady. The single most important of these is maintaining a healthy and balanced diet. There are lots of small changes we can make to our diets that, together, have been shown to improve blood sugar levels significantly.
Reducing Food Intake
Reducing our intake of foods that are high in sugar is the first and most obvious step. Many processed and ready-made foods these days have lots of sugar added; and many of us like to add our own sugar to things like our cereals and our tea & coffee. Cutting out this excess sugar reduces our total glucose intake and our blood sugar levels will soon follow.
Replacing sugars with unrefined complex carbohydrates (carbs) and fibrous vegetables is another great way to avoid blood sugar spikes. The rise in blood sugar levels seen after we eat carbs is measured by the “Glycemic Index (G.I.)”. Simple sugars (like glucose and sucrose) don’t need to be broken down and are absorbed very quickly. When you drink a sugary drink, for example, your blood sugar levels rise rapidly. These simple sugars (and some refined complex carbs) have a very high G.I. and should be minimized as they can raise your blood sugar levels very quickly.
Many of the unrefined sources of complex carbs, such as legumes, whole grains and vegetables; are broken down much more slowly. This means glucose enters your blood stream at a much slower and more even rate after you eat them. Blood sugar levels do not rise rapidly and insulin is able to do its job much more efficiently. These foods have a low G.I., and are definitely the better choice for maintaining even blood sugar levels. Eating protein, fat or fiber alongside carbs also slows their digestion and therefore lowers their G.I. level; another reason that eating balanced meals is good for us.
Other changes we can make to our diets include things like portion control and eating regularly. It makes sense that when we eat large servings of carbs, more glucose enters our blood stream. Even if these carbs have a low G.I and don’t cause an initial spike in blood sugar, the total volume of glucose released will keep our blood sugar levels elevated for a longer time, maybe even until we eat again. This means it’s better to eat sensible portion sizes regularly throughout the day. And when we eat regularly timed meals, we are able to keep our blood sugar levels more steady. Skipping meals will only leave you hungry and more likely to overeat later.
Many people with high blood sugar levels do not exercise adequately, and this is another great way to help manage your blood sugar levels. When you exercise regularly, especially resistance exercise, your metabolism increases and your body’s demand for glucose goes up. Excess blood sugar is taken up into muscles and other organs, removing it from your blood stream. Your body becomes more sensitive to insulin, which is then able to do its job of regulating your blood sugar levels more effectively.
There are also several supplements which, alongside a healthy diet and regular exercise, may help support normal blood sugar levels. MitoQ® Blood Sugar is a ground-breaking formulation designed to help support normal blood sugar levels which will be discussed in more depth in the next blog.
• Reduce your intake of sugary drinks and foods and try not to add your own extra sugar
• Eat more unrefined carbs and vegetables in favor of refined carbs and sugars.
• Reduce portion sizes and try to eat regularly throughout the day. Avoid skipping meals
• Eat balanced meals containing a mix of protein, carbs, fats and fiber
• Exercise regularly, use evidence-backed supplements and always follow your doctor’s advice