Frequent imbalances in our blood sugar can play havoc with our overall health. That’s why it’s vitally important to keep our blood sugar levels balanced throughout the day.
Here are some tips how to do that:
1) Don’t skip breakfast
Breakfast is an important meal, it sets you up for the day! If you skip it the body increases the production of stress hormones and starts to breakdown your muscle to use energy! Your breakfast should consist of a hearty source of protein, some fat and carbohydrates (ideally from vegetable sources). Stay away from processed carbohydrates (e.g. white bread, pasta, cookies etc.)
If you don’t feel hungry in the morning it may be an indication of suboptimal liver function or slow digestion due to inadequate stomach acid production.
2) Consume healthy fats with each meal
Whenever we eat carbohydrates we should add a good quality fat. Fat slows down the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream and prevents sugar highs and sugar lows, keeping us satiated for longer.
Unfortunately, many people still follow a low-fat diet, which isn’t doing them any good. What happens when we attempt a low-fat diet? We replace fat with sugar and refined carbohydrates, because removing fat from food also removes moisture and flavour. Additionally, sugar cravings and increased appetite arise as a result of this because fat provides satiation and satisfaction after meals, while carbohydrates alone do not.
Fat also signals our gallbladder to release bile, which is involved in the breakdown and absorption of fat from our diet. A lack of fat in our diet causes the bile to become thick and stagnant and contributes to reabsorption of toxins that would otherwise leave our body – which is a scenario we definitely want to avoid.
When choosing fats, skip anything that requires a factory to produce it. Many vegetable oils such as safflower oil, corn oil, soya oil, margarine are highly processed and inflammatory. As a rule of thumb choose fats such as coconut oil, cold pressed olive oil, butter, lard, avocado oil and ghee.
3) Have some protein with each meal
Just like fat, protein has a stabilizing effect on our blood sugar levels. It helps to pull glucose into your cells, so your body can use it for energy. Good sources of protein include: grass-fed meat, oily fish, eggs, beans, legumes, lentils, nuts & seeds.
4) Don’t graze all day
This is still a hotly debated topic as some healthcare practitioners believe that grazing all day is the way to go. Others believe that transitioning to larger and less frequent meals is more beneficial for our blood sugar balance and overall health. If you have compromised digestion, autoimmune disease or adrenal fatigue it may be necessary to transition slowly to your new eating regime.
5) Exercise regularly
Exercise improves insulin sensitivity. It supports metabolism by burning fat and building muscle. It’s best to do various types of exercise. Aim to do some cardio interval training (e.g. spin bike, interval running, speed walking) and weight bearing training (e.g. yoga, pilates, weight lifting) each week. It is recommended to exercise at least 20 – 30 minutes five times a week.