Why Do I Need Sugar In My Blood?
If you are looking for ways how to bring blood sugar down, there are a few things you need to know first. Blood sugar (glucose) comes from food. It’s your body’s main source of energy. These sugars are carried to the cells throughout your body by your blood, providing them with the energy they need to function optimally.
For a person with diabetes or pre-diabetes, their body does not effectively regulate blood sugars. This causes levels to become either too high or too low. Long term, frequent high blood sugar (hyperglycemia) can lead to a number of serious health complications. Kidney disease, cardiovascular disease, nerve damage, vision impairment, joint damage, are just a few. Learning to regulate your blood sugar, as well as how to lower high blood sugar, is essential for your health. It is important to know how to bring blood sugar down once it has gotten too high.
Good Blood Sugar Levels
Sugar levels change throughout the day depending on activity levels and eating patterns. Normal blood sugar levels for an adult that has not eaten for 8 hours (referred to as fasting) is between 70 and 100. It should be less than 140 within 2 hours of eating a meal.
the below video is a a bit dry but it explains the science behind blood sugar levels:
Increased Sugar Levels:
A number of factors can contribute to a spike in your sugar levels. These include:
- Failure to take your diabetes medication
- Eating a heavy meal – especially one high in carbohydrates
- Not getting adequate physical activity
- Coping with illness
- Excess Stress
Signs and Symptoms of High Blood Sugar:
Symptoms to watch for that may indicate your blood sugar is too high include:
- Dry mouth
- Extreme thirst
- Nausea and vomiting
- Fruity breath
- Shortness of breath
- Blurry vision
- Rapid heartbeat.
If your body is not properly regulating glucose, you may also experience a drop in blood sugar levels. Here are signs to look out for that may indicate your blood sugar is too low:
- Speech difficulties
If you experience these symptoms, you need to take immediate steps to control your levels.
How To Bring Blood Sugar Down
If symptoms are severe or you feel like you may pass out, call 911.
Monitor Your Blood Sugar
If you have already been diagnosed with diabetes, you should have a blood sugar monitor. Check your blood sugar levels and follow your doctors prescribed plan.
Take Your Prescribed Insulin
If you take insulin, give yourself the correct prescribed dose
Drink Plenty Of Water
Drink two glasses of water back to back to stabilize your glucose levels
Exercise To Lower Blood Sugar
Exercise is great for regulating your blood sugar levels overall. It is a great tool for getting your levels back down when they spike. Exercise causes your muscles to use more glucose and it helps your body to better utilize insulin. Exercise gets your blood flowing, causing your body to use up any excess sugar in the blood, regulating your levels. As you get your heart rate up during exercise, you release endorphins and your body starts to feel better. Exercising to lose belly fat is a great way to naturally lower your blood sugar.
- To be effective, you want to get your heart rate up for at least 10 to 15 minutes. Monitor sugar intermittently to make sure your level doesn’t drop too quickly. Moderate walking works well to get the blood pumping. Exercise is the fastest way to bring down blood sugar second to administering insulin. Frequent, regular exercise is important for maintaining healthy sugar levels. As always, be sure to check with doctor first before starting a new exercise routine.
- NOTE: Exercise is not recommended for people with diabetic ketoacidosis. See your doctor for appropriate interventions.
- Weight training is also great for lower blood sugar. It builds muscle that burns glucose more efficiently. Be aware that you may see a rise in levels when your first begin weight training, so be sure to monitor your levels.
Protein For Lower Blood Sugar
Proteins help to stabilize blood sugar and slow glucose absorption. When your levels are high, eat a protein rich snack. Watch out for protein bars and drinks, however. Many of these may be very high in sugar, so always read labels. A tablespoon of no sugar added peanut or other nut butter, an egg, or piece of cheese is good for this.
How to Prevent High Blood Sugar and Type 2 Diabetes
There are two key factors that will help regulate your blood sugar and greatly reduce your risk of Type 2 Diabetes. You guessed it: diet and exercise. These elements are key to overall good health and the prevention of most chronic disease, including Diabetes. Lose excess weight, eat a healthy, well balanced diet, and exercise regularly. Below are some tips to help you out.
Foods that Lower Blood Sugar
Food can be a wonderful tonic for your overall good health and well-being or it can be devastating to your health. Taking the time and effort to make good choices can save you from a lot of pain and suffering in the future. Here is a list of foods that are great for your health, and especially good for maintaining healthy sugar levels.
Cinnamon has been shown to lower blood sugar and ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol. It also has been shown to raise ‘good’ HDL cholesterol. It is a wonderful additive to many foods and beverages, and can be taken as a supplement.
Fenugreek has been found to lower blood sugar in people with prediabetes as well those with type 1 and 2 diabetes. Fenugreek slows the digestion of carbohydrates and is full of nutritious vitamins and minerals. You can take as a supplement, in tea form, or use as a spice for your food.
Garlic & Onions
Studies have shown that garlic and onions have amazing health benefits overall, including lowering cholesterol and blood sugar levels.
Avocado and Nuts
Healthy fatty acids (monounsaturated), such as those found in avocados and nuts, play a key role in maintaining healthy blood sugar levels and lowering insulin resistance. They also help with maintaining healthy blood pressure and reducing inflammation in the body. Avocado has been shown to lower risk of diabetes.
Blueberries, blackberries and other blue, red or purple skinned fruits and veggies are high in anthrocyanins. Anthrocyanins inhibit digestive enzymes, slowing digestion and preventing blood sugar spikes. Blueberries and other “Blue” foods are a great source of soluble fiber and key nutrients. They also increase insulin sensitivity and help regulate blood sugar levels.
Cherries are also high in anthrocyanins and have been shown to lower insulin resistance and lower levels of inflammation in the body.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar has numerous health benefits, including increasing sensitivity to insulin, and reducing blood sugar spikes after eating starchy foods
Lower Carbohydrate Intake
Carbohydrates are essential to effect functioning of your body, however too many carbohydrates are not good for you – especially if you have high blood sugar. Eating a diet low in carbohydrates and high in leafy greens, dark fruits and berries, nuts, and lean meats will do wonders for controlling blood sugars. Also spread out your carb intake over the day rather than all at once.
Unsweetened black, white or green tea help to lower blood sugar within 30 minutes of consumption. A glass of red wine has been shown to lower blood sugar within an hour. It does this by preventing the absorption of glucose in the intestines. Please note that red wine is not recommended for long term glucose control because it builds up fat in the liver.
Along with all these foods it helps to know how to shop. Use this grocery list for losing weight on a budget to help. Knowing all these different foods can help you manage your blood sugar and more importantly learn how to bring blood sugar down once it gets too high.
Health Coach Drew
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