Do you sometimes wake up in the morning feeling cranky and with a headache? Or do you find yourself moody and sleepy after lunch? Perhaps every time you indulge in an afternoon snack you end up feeling jittery half an hour later?
Bouncing blood sugars can happen to any one of us, regardless of whether we’re diabetic or not. And no matter who you are they can make you feel downright gross.
Hack your blood sugar with these 3 food tricks
But you don’t have to just grin and bear it when it comes to blood sugar spikes and crashes. There are some surprisingly simple changes you can make starting TODAY that can help you have better blood sugar TOMORROW.
1.Eat your favorite veggies raw:
Everyone knows eating your vegetables is good for you. But did you know how you eat them could impact how they affect your blood sugar? Cooking vegetables breaks down cell walls making the carbohydrates in them more bioavailable, so they can have more of an immediate impact on your blood sugar levels. Plus methods such as boiling can cause a bit of a breakdown, or a loss, of blood-sugar-friendly fiber.1 Stick to raw veggies, and you will likely have less of a spike in your blood sugar.
2. Convert carbs into blood sugar buddies:
Craving some satisfying carbs? It’s okay to indulge a little sometimes. But when you do indulge be sure to keep your serving size reasonable, stick to healthier whole grains and pair them with a blood-sugar friendly protein such as chicken or fish along with a dash of healthy fat. Research shows that lean proteins don’t spike blood sugars, and paired with glucose may even lower blood sugar response after eating up to 34 percent. In other words, this combo could help head off those roller coaster high and low blood sugars that carbohydrates can cause.2,3,4
For even better results eat the protein BEFORE you indulge in the carb. A study published in the journal Diabetes Care found that eating carbs at the end of your meal could help head off blood sugar spikes after eating.5
3. Give into your chocolate craving:
Yes, you can give into your chocolate cravings from time to time without sending your blood sugar into the stratosphere. Just swap out your milk chocolate for a small portion of dark chocolate chips (about a tablespoon), or a couple of squares of a bar. The darker the chocolate the lower the sugar level.
Want to make your treat is even more blood sugar friendly? Pair it up with a couple of crunchy apple slices and a tablespoon of your favorite all-natural, no-sugar-added nut butter. The fiber from the apple can slow down stomach emptying which helps heads off blood sugar spikes, and the healthy fat and protein can help keep blood sugar steady.6,7,8
1. “Carbohydrates in human nutrition: Effects of Food Processing on Dietary Carbohydrates,” Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Protection
2. “From Research to Practice/ Medical Nutrition Therapy: Protein Controversies in Diabetes,” Diabetes Spectrum, Volume 13 Number 3, 2000, Page 132
3. “Effect of protein ingestion on the glucose and insulin response to a standardized oral glucose load.” Diabetes Care 7:465-70, 1984
4. “Protein: metabolism and effect on blood glucose levels,” Diabetes Educ. 1997 Nov-Dec;23(6):643-6, 648, 650-1
5. “Food Order Has a Significant Impact on Postprandial Glucose and Insulin Levels,” Diabetes Care 2015 Jul; 38(7): e98-e99
6. “Beneficial Effects of High Dietary Fiber Intake in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus,” N Engl J Med 2000; 342:1392-1398, May 11, 2000
7. Relationships Between Gastric Emptying, Postprandial Glycemia, and Incretin Hormones,” Diabetes Care 2013 May; 36(5): 1396-1405
8. “Effect of altering gastric emptying on postprandial plasma glucose concentrations following a physiologic meal in type-II diabetic patients,” Dig Dis Sci 2003;48:488–497
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