How To Lower Blood Sugar Foods – Mary Ellen Phipps, MPH, RDN, LD, founder of Milk & Honey Nutrition, is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist known for combining her diabetes knowledge and culinary expertise in easy-to-follow recipes and articles!
In this article we will take a closer look at how to lower blood sugar quickly, and what foods help lower blood sugar in time.
There is no one food that can magically protect your body from diabetes. However, there are foods that research has proven help promote healthy blood sugar levels over time. Read on to learn how to lower blood sugar levels quickly, foods that help lower blood sugar, and what foods to eat when your blood sugar is higher than you’d like.
* This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis, opinion, treatment or service. This article and the links it contains provide general information for educational institutions only. The information provided in this article is not medical care. It should not be substituted for the advice of your doctor or registered dietitian.
Before we begin, let’s review some definitions of what “normal blood sugar” means for people without diabetes;
If you have diabetes (of any type) your doctor will treat you with specific blood sugar goals. These terms may vary for various reasons.
How to lower blood sugar quickly can depend on a number of factors, but the following techniques are almost always helpful.
* High blood sugar (>250mg/dL) can be a life-threatening condition if ketones are present. Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) can develop when blood sugar reaches this level. Discuss your action plan with your doctor if/when this happens. This includes knowing when it’s okay to stay home and manage your blood sugar and when you need to go to the gym.
**Exercise may not be appropriate if blood sugar is above 250mg/dL. Discuss this with your doctor before attempting this exercise when your blood sugar is high.
What you need to do when your blood sugar is elevated is to treat other foods that help lower your blood sugar over time. This discussion is often more relevant to those who use insulin (type 1 diabetes and insulin-dependent type 2 diabetes), but it can apply to all types of diabetes.
In general, you can still eat all the normal fat, fiber, and protein foods you eat when your blood sugar is high. You don’t need to restrict food or eliminate carbohydrates during these times, but you need to be more careful about the foods you eat and really make sure to fill your plate with complex carbohydrates and the most nutritious protein sources.
Long-term strategies for reducing blood sugar in people with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes include a variety of different causes. Others, however, are compared to food, while others relate to other aspects of life.
Most people think that the only way to lower blood sugar levels is to eat food. But there are many other things that can affect blood sugar levels. These include: activity levels, stress levels, hormones, and more. The following strategies have been proven to help reduce blood sugar levels over time:
No food will lower blood sugar immediately, but when eaten regularly over time, certain foods have been proven to promote stable blood sugar and lower blood glucose levels.
I use oats in many recipes because they are high in fiber and a great protein option compared to traditional flour. Oats are rich in soluble fiber known to help promote healthy blood sugar levels.
Like oats, beans are rich in fiber and protein, two nutrients we know help promote blood sugar balance. Most importantly, they offer a good amount of fiber (like oats) and are resistant to starch. Both of these types of carbohydrates take longer for our bodies to digest, and thus help promote stable blood sugar.
Fatty fish (such as salmon) and eggs are rich in vitamins, minerals, and are easy to digest and provide quality protein and fat. Protein and fat both help prevent your body from responding to post-meal sugar and promote stable blood sugar.
Nuts, seeds, and a variety of butters provide quality sources of protein, plant-based fats, and fiber…all three nutrients needed to balance blood sugar! These foods have been shown not only to help promote healthy blood sugar levels, but also to keep you satisfied and fuller for longer.
Healthy foods such as yogurt, kefir, kimchi, sauerkraut and more contain probiotics. A diet rich in probiotics can not only lower blood sugar levels, but also blood insulin levels according to some studies.
Leafy greens are an excellent source of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and fiber, and can easily be added to everything from smoothies to omelets to salads. And as we mentioned earlier, high-fiber foods help promote healthy blood sugar levels.
One of the biggest myths about blood sugar management is that people who want to balance their blood sugar should not eat fruit. But the truth is that we have a lot of data to show that diabetes, which includes fruits, not only protects against the development of diabetes or type 2 diabetes, but helps to manage existing diabetes. Specifically, research has shown greater consumption of grapes, blueberries, and/or apples with a decreased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Eating whole citrus fruits, such as oranges and grapefruit, can help promote healthy blood sugar and other related characteristics such as insulin levels and hemoglobin A1c.
Avocados are not only delicious but are high in plant fat and fiber. Both will slow down the nutrient absorption process and promote a continuous supply of energy to the blood…blood sugar balance!
There are also many other foods that can help lower blood sugar over time in addition to the foods listed above.
The next time your blood sugar is high and you’re wondering what foods can help lower blood sugar or what to eat with your next meal, try some of these foods;
For more resources on managing diabetes and balancing blood sugar, check out the Diabetes 101 section of my website. We cover a variety of topics related to measuring blood sugar!
I don’t know about you, but Halloween usually rolls around here pretty well, so I whipped up some fun Halloween themed grape popsicles to celebrate!
My gluten free apples crisp recipe is super easy to make and loaded with delicate seasonal apple flavor!
Get this easy and delicious Roasted Grapes with Goat Cheese Crostini recipe perfect for your next get together.
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People with prediabetes, diabetes, or other conditions that affect blood sugar need a healthy diet to help keep their blood sugar balanced. Many foods can help lower your blood sugar, but some may be more effective than others.
Although factors such as body weight, activity, stress, and genetics also play a role in maintaining blood sugar, following a healthy diet is important for blood sugar control (
While foods, including those high in added sugar and refined carbs, can affect blood sugar fluctuations, others can improve blood sugar while improving overall health (
This plant chemical is produced when cabbage is cut or left as a result of the reaction of a glucosinolate compound called glucoraphanin and the enzyme myrosinase, both of which the cabbage collects (5).
Test tube, animal, and human studies have shown that kale extract, rich in sulforaphane, has potent antidiabetic effects, helping to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar and signs of oxidative stress (
Broccoli sprouts are a source of concentrated glucosinolates such as glucoraphanin, and have been shown to help promote insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes when added as a powder or extract.
Remember that the best way to increase the absorption of sulforaphane is to enjoy raw and lightly steamed kale, or to add active sources of myrosinase, such as mustard powder to cooked kale.
Seafood, including fish and shellfish, provides a great source of protein, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can help regulate blood sugar levels.
Chocolate is a great source of protein. It helps slow digestion and prevents blood sugar from rising after eating, as well as increasing feelings of fullness. In addition, it can help prevent food and promote the loss of excess body fat, two important events for healthy blood sugar levels (
A diet high in fatty fish like salmon and sardines has been shown to help improve
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