Even if you don’t have diabetes, your blood sugar is something to consider. Blood sugar is your body’s fuel, but too much or too little can interfere with good health. Stabilizing your blood sugar can have many positive effects on your health, including insulin regulation and healthy energy levels. Fortunately, there are some easy things you can do to get your blood sugar stabilized so you feel better and maximize your overall health. Try these ideas from the health experts at Shape magazine.
1. Workout after You Eat Your Lunch
If you tend to head back to your desk or just sit there in a food coma when lunch is over, it’s time to get moving. Studies show that getting up and moving after your meal will help keep the sugar from building up in your body by using the glucose as fuel. Experts suggest taking a walk about 30 minutes after you finish your noon meal.
2. Have Cinnamon on Your Toast
If you stick to dry toast or a slather of butter on your toast, try some cinnamon. Not only will it shake things up and make breakfast more fun, but cinnamon has been shown to lower blood sugar in the hours after a meal. In addition to toast, you can sprinkle cinnamon on oatmeal or into your favorite smoothie.
3. Wait to Have Your Snack until after Your Workout
If you only plan a normal 30 minute workout, you can save the snack for when you’re done. When your body runs out of glucose for fuel, you burn fat in its place. If you eat right before you exercise, your body will burn the snack first. If you wait, your body will burn fat instead. Pretty cool, right?
4. Enjoy Fermented Foods Every Single Day
Foods that are fermented contain probiotics, which are healthy bacteria that help balance your gut health and can also stabilize blood sugar levels. Yogurt is the most obvious choice, but sauerkraut, kimchi, pickles and kefir are other delicious choices that have the same great benefits.
5. Boost Your Daily Water Intake
Becoming dehydrated can increase blood sugar, so it makes sense that drinking more water can help counteract the problem. Experts say that the magic number is 34 ounces. Drink that much daily and you should be good to go. Carrying a water bottle wherever you go makes it so much easier to reach your daily quota.
6. Nix the Artificial Sweeteners from Your Diet
Some people opt for artificial sweeteners to help them control their intake of the sweet stuff. However, more and more research is finding that they might not be the best choice for most people. Studies show that artificial sweeteners can raise blood sugar just like the real stuff can. There are a couple of theories as to why this is, but the bottom line is that you should limit sweet treats, soda and other sugary things so that you can keep your blood sugar in check.
7. Eat Your Bread Last Instead of First
If you’re going to indulge in the bread basket, experts suggest waiting until the rest of your meal is finished. That’s because filling up on veggies and protein first help slow down carbohydrate release, which in turn helps keep blood sugar from spiking. When you do eat the bread, dip it in olive oil and vinegar, which has been shown in studies to help lower blood sugar.
8. Take in Healthy Fats
Since fats slow down the absorption of glucose in the blood stream, they can keep blood sugar levels balanced, preventing a crash and maintaining a healthy weight.
9. Eat Protein for Breakfast
Not eating breakfast wreaks havoc on your blood sugar levels for the rest of the day. A healthy and protein packed breakfast helps to stabilize blood sugar throughout the day so the carbs you take in later don't destroy you. Shoot for at least 20 grams of protein to get the full effects.
10. Get Quality Sleep
Sleep deprivation has been linked to cortisol levels so high/low that it causes insulin resistance. It also drastically affects glucose tolerance which creates higher blood sugar levels.
Which of these things do you think you can do? Won’t you be glad to have better blood sugar levels?