A large percentage of Americans have problems controlling and regulating their blood sugar levels.
About one in 10 Americans has diabetes, and around one in three has prediabetes.
Diabetes mellitus is a group of diseases that affect how the body uses blood sugar (glucose). The main cause of diabetes varies by type, but it is usually genetic or environmental. Regardless of the type, diabetes can result in excess sugar in our bodies, which can lead to serious health complications. Luckily, there are ways we can control our blood sugar levels.
With so many people having issues with diabetes, prediabetes, metabolic syndrome, and sugar regulation in general—it’s crucial to learn how to control and maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
Keep reading this article, and you will find out three easy ways to naturally regulate blood sugar and why it is important to do so.
Top 3 Tips to Control Blood Sugar
These three easy tips have been shown to be highly effective in lowering our blood sugar levels, and everyone can do them.
Increase Fiber in Your Diet
Fiber is a nutrient that can help stabilize your blood sugar. According to some studies, fiber plays an important role in weight management and can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. On top of that, studies have shown that high-fiber diets can reduce the incidence of type 2 diabetes by 15% to 19%.
According to the Mayo Clinic, plant foods that are high in fiber are raspberries, peas, and whole grains. Despite some popular diets like paleo, beans and legumes are amazing sources of fiber, which can lower blood glucose levels if used regularly.
Having fiber in fruits and vegetables creates the ability to slow down the absorption of glucose and prevent that spike from happening.
Our diet is something that we have control over and can help us with blood sugar regulation, but only if we know what good practices are and what we should avoid. Below are some examples of high fiber foods:
NOTE: A common mistake people who want to increase fiber in their diet make is drinking a lot of fresh fruit and vegetable juices. Unfortunately, that is not effective at all because, by juicing the produce, we literally throw away the fiber from it. And in contrast to what we want, juices will cause blood sugar spikes.
Another natural way to control blood sugar levels is through exercise. Daily movement is equally important for mental and physical health, especially because it increases insulin sensitivity and the body’s ability to use glucose as a source of energy.
You need to find a physical activity that is suitable for your specific health state and needs.
High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
There are many amazing improvements in people’s blood sugar when they practice high-intensity interval training (HIIT). HIIT is a type of physical activity done in short spurts with rest breaks in between each spurt of exercise. HIIT training increases glucose metabolism in muscles and insulin sensitivity. Within just two weeks of training, the glucose uptake in the thigh muscles had already returned to normal levels, according to research done by the University of Turku.
However, this type of training isn’t suitable for people with cardiovascular issues, which are usually connected with blood sugar control. It can be dangerous to practice HIIT training if you have a problem with your cardiovascular system, so the best thing to do is check with your doctor prior to beginning any type of new exercise regimen.
Moderate Aerobic Activity
People who can’t practice high intensity training still have options to be physically active, one of which is moderate aerobic activity—walking at a burst pace, jogging, swimming, etc. It would be best to incorporate these activities in a longer duration, between 30 and 45 minutes, 4 to 5 times a week.
Stress has such a significant impact on our overall health that studies still haven’t discovered every effect on our bodies, but one thing is certain—stress increases the blood sugar level. Unfortunately, we can’t eliminate stress entirely, but there are some proven ways to help you manage it.
Chronic stress has been linked to elevated blood sugar levels and insulin resistance, which can worsen diabetes management. By engaging in breathwork practices such as diaphragmatic breathing or alternate nostril breathing, individuals may experience a decrease in stress hormones like cortisol, thereby promoting better blood sugar regulation.
Health care professionals found that if you’re able to reduce cortisol levels, a stress hormone, that will affect blood sugar levels and how your body is regulating them. There are many different types of meditation, like mindfulness meditation, and as long as there is research behind it that shows you’re reducing cortisol levels, it can really make a difference.
Yoga is an amazing practice where you can combine deep breathing with being physically active. Certain yoga poses and movements, such as forward folds and twists, can stimulate the abdominal organs and enhance digestion, potentially aiding in the regulation of blood sugar levels.
Whether you have diabetes or not, here are the crucial facts about controlling blood sugar that everyone should know:
- Diet has a significant impact on blood glucose levels. You can prevent sugar spikes by monitoring carb intake, avoiding processed foods and sugar-sweetened beverages, and incorporating whole fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and other foods that are high in fiber into your meals.
- Daily exercise is essential to controlling blood sugar. Physical activity will lower your blood glucose levels and boost the body’s sensitivity to insulin. Just make sure to adjust the type of training to your health state.
- Stress drastically increases our blood sugar, but practices like breathwork, meditation, and yoga can help us reduce stress hormones and allow our body to better control blood sugar levels.
High Blood Sugar Can Slow Down Healing Process
High blood sugar levels can cause permanent damage to our eyes, nerves, kidneys, and blood vessels. But a new study also finds a link between issues with controlling blood sugar and earlier stages of degeneration in the spine, especially discs.
This is a really important finding. A lot of our patients with issues regulating blood sugar come into the clinic to heal their spine, and sometimes their body is not healing the way it is supposed to.
Don’t wait to take control of your blood sugar metabolism because it can affect how our bodies heal.