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Tips For Healthy Eating With Diabetes

How To Lower Blood Sugar Levels (Naturally & Quickly)

There are different types of diabetes, and no two people with diabetes are the same. So there isnt a one-size-fits-all âdiabetes dietâ for everyone with diabetes. But weve come up with tips that you can use to help you make healthier food choices.

These healthy eating tips are general and can help you manage your blood glucose , blood pressure and cholesterol levels. They can also help you manage your weight and reduce the risk of diabetes complications, such as heart problems and strokes, and other health conditions including certain types of cancers.

Making healthier food choices is important to manage your diabetes and to reduce your risk of diabetes complications. We know that not everyone agrees on what is the best diet.

This is why weve reviewed all the evidence to put these tips together. Weve focused on specific foods, to make it easier for you to put these tips into practice and to complement whatever diet you decide to follow.

â Douglas Twenefour, Specialist Dietitian and Deputy Head of Care

Weâve based our tips on research involving people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. If you have a different type of diabetes, like gestational, cystic fibrosis-related diabetes or MODY, some of these tips are relevant to you. Its important, whatever kind of diabetes you have, to see your dietitian for specific advice.

How Does Drinking Water Lower Blood Sugar

Drinking water may counter high blood glucose levels by:

  • Helping the kidneys flush out extra glucose through urine
  • Reducing the risk of overeating

Water can act as a temporary natural appetite suppressant, and may be used as a tool to thwart overeating. The average stomach volume is 2.5 ounces, but it can expand to about 33 ounces in the average adult. Drinking water fills some of that volume, leaving less space for food.

A study published in the Journal of Natural Science, Biology, and Medicine reported on what happened to a group of overweight women who drank large quantities of water for eight consecutive weeks. The results showed that drinking water contributed to a decrease in body weight and an increase in appetite suppression6.

Be careful to watch what you eat though: If you drink enough water to suppress your appetite, but your meal consists of a tray of pastries, your blood sugar will spike regardless.

Two of the symptoms of high blood sugar are increased thirst and dryness of the mouth. This is the bodyâs counteractive mechanism urging you to drink water so it can clear out excess glucose and recalibrate blood glucose concentrations.

So, by increasing your water consumption, youâll feel the need to urinate frequently. This can excrete excess sugars from your blood and bring down your glucose levels.

What Is The Glycemic Index

The glycemic index is a number given to foods to indicate how fast they will affect the glucose level in your blood . Dr. David Jenkins developed the glycemic index at the University of Toronto in 1981.5 Dr. Jenkins was conducting research on how people with Type 1 diabetes can control blood sugar, and that led him to understanding more about the role of carbohydrates in blood glucose levels. When you eat, your body converts the food to energy for the body, and one of those conversions is to provide sugar to the body. Foods that convert to sugar more slowly provide a more continuous source of energy, without the spikes in blood sugar that can lead to a crash, causing low energy and lethargy. The list below is incomplete, but it can help you start thinking about foods that that provide slow and steady energy to the body. Harvard has a longer list of foods and their glycemic index at this link2.

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How Long Will It Take To Lower My Blood Sugar

If you have high blood sugarin a non-emergency situationthere are several things you can do to lower your blood sugar right away. Follow these steps in order:

  • Take medications as prescribed. This may be metformin or insulin.
  • Insulin can cause low blood sugars, so be sure to check your blood sugar after administering insulin to make sure it doesnt get too low.
  • If you are a type 1 diabetic, check your urine for ketones. If there are ketones present, do not exercise as ketones raise blood sugar. Go to the emergency room or contact your healthcare provider immediately. Otherwise, heart-pumping exercise can lower blood sugar immediately.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Sometimes people with diabetes can go into diabetic ketoacidosis or hyperglycemic hyperosmolar syndrome, a medical emergency requiring immediate medical care. The symptoms are subtle but look out for:

    • Shortness of breath
    • Excessive urination
    • Abdominal pain

    If you experience these symptoms, call your healthcare provider immediately and follow their guidelines. If you cannot reach a physician emergently, call 911.

    Get Trendy With Apple Cider Vinegar

    Pin on Blood Sugar Lower Quickly

    If you do a quick Google search, youll see that apple cider vinegar is good for pretty much everything. You can use it to tone your skin, clean your pipes, and possibly lower your blood sugar!

    A clinical review found that taking ACV daily could reduce blood glucose levels. Unfortunately, most of the trials were very small and some had mixed results.

    But since youve probably got it in your house anyway, try taking a swig or two before meals, testing yourself, and seeing if a little ACV shot works for you .

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    Eat Several Meals Throughout The Day

    Eating small meals frequently throughout the day is a great way to keep satiety up and keep blood sugar levels balanced, said Dr. Oz on his blog. Oz recommends eating in “three’s,” meaning eating a snack every three hours throughout the day, as that is the time when people start to feel hungry and should reach for something nourishing to fill their bellies.

    Sweet Potatoes And Yams

    Regular potatoes have a high GI score, but sweet potatoes and yams have low scores and are very nutritious.

    Some research indicates that the flesh of the sweet potato contains more fiber than the skin, indicating that the whole vegetable could be beneficial for those with diabetes.

    Reporting the findings of an animal study, the researchers also note that sweet potato consumption may lower some markers of diabetes.

    Although there is still no conclusive evidence to suggest that sweet potatoes can help stabilize or lower blood sugar levels in humans, they are undoubtedly a nutritious food with a low GI score.

    People can substitute sweet potatoes or yams for potatoes in a variety of dishes, from fries to casseroles.

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    Can You Lower Blood Sugar By Drinking Water

    Water can help lower your blood sugar by flushing out excess sugar through your urine. But how much do you need?

    Carbohydrates are not your enemy. Low- and medium-glycemic carbs from vegetables, fruits, and fiber-filled whole grains, beans, and legumes provide vital nutrients that should be part of a balanced diet.

    However, consuming an excessive amount of carb-heavy foods and drinks can increase blood sugar levels, and chronically elevated glucose over time may lead to metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance and potentially type 2 diabetes.

    There are plenty of ways to prevent this from happening, from switching to a low-glycemic diet to exercising regularly. One simple thing everyone at any age can do that may lower blood sugar: Drink more water.

    But, does drinking water really help lower blood sugar? Letâs dive deeper to find out.

    Really The Claim: Drinking Water Can Help Lower The Risk Of Diabetes

    What To Eat To Lower Blood Sugar? — Lower Blood Sugar Naturally

    THE FACTS

    There are many reasons to stay properly hydrated, but only recently have scientists begun to consider diabetes prevention one of them. The amount of water you drink can play a role in how your body regulates blood sugar, researchers have found.

    The reason: a hormone called vasopressin, which helps regulate water retention.

    When the body is dehydrated, vasopressin levels rise, prompting the kidneys to hold onto water. At the same time, the hormone pushes the liver to produce blood sugar, which over time may strain the ability to produce or respond to insulin.

    One of the largest studies to look at the consequences was published last year in Diabetes Care, a publication of the American Diabetes Association. French scientists tracked more than 3,000 healthy men and women ages 30 to 65 for nearly a decade. All had normal blood sugar levels at the start of the research.

    After nine years, about 800 had developed Type 2 diabetes or high blood sugar. But those who consumed the most water, 17 to 34 ounces a day, had a risk roughly 30 percent lower than that of those who drank the least. The researchers controlled for the subjects intake of other liquids that could have affected the results, mainly sugary and alcoholic drinks, as well as exercise, weight and other factors affecting health. The researchers did not look at eating habits, something future studies may take into account.

    THE BOTTOM LINE

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    Carbohydrates And Blood Sugar

    When people eat a food containing carbohydrates, the digestive system breaks down the digestible ones into sugar, which enters the blood.

    • As blood sugar levels rise, the pancreas produces insulin, a hormone that prompts cells to absorb blood sugar for energy or storage.
    • As cells absorb blood sugar, levels in the bloodstream begin to fall.
    • When this happens, the pancreas start making glucagon, a hormone that signals the liver to start releasing stored sugar.
    • This interplay of insulin and glucagon ensure that cells throughout the body, and especially in the brain, have a steady supply of blood sugar.

    Carbohydrate metabolism is important in the development of type 2 diabetes, which occurs when the body cant make enough insulin or cant properly use the insulin it makes.

    • Type 2 diabetes usually develops gradually over a number of years, beginning when muscle and other cells stop responding to insulin. This condition, known as insulin resistance, causes blood sugar and insulin levels to stay high long after eating. Over time, the heavy demands made on the insulin-making cells wears them out, and insulin production eventually stops.

    Will Supplements And Vitamins Help My Diabetes

    No clear proof exists that taking dietary supplements such as vitamins, minerals, herbs, or spices can help manage diabetes.1 You may need supplements if you cannot get enough vitamins and minerals from foods. Talk with your health care provider before you take any dietary supplement since some can cause side effects or affect how your medicines work.2

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    Which Carbs Raise Blood Sugar Levels

    good foods to control blood sugar levels ~ Jani Blood Sugar

    In plant foods, carbs comprise a combination of starch, sugar, and fiber. Only the starch and sugar components raise blood sugar.

    Fiber thats naturally found in foods, whether soluble or insoluble, doesnt break down into glucose in the body, and doesnt raise blood sugar levels .

    You can actually subtract the fiber and sugar alcohols from the total carb content, leaving you with the digestible or net carb content. For example, 1 cup of cauliflower contains 5 grams of carbs, 3 of which are fiber. Therefore, its net carb content is 2 grams.

    Prebiotic fiber, such as inulin, has even been shown to improve fasting blood sugar and other health markers in people with type 2 diabetes .

    Sugar alcohols, such as maltitol, xylitol, erythritol, and sorbitol, are often used to sweeten sugar-free candy and other diet products.

    Some of them, especially maltitol, can actually raise blood sugar levels in people with diabetes .

    For this reason, use the net carb tool cautiously, as the count listed on a products label may not be accurate if all the carbs contributed by maltitol are subtracted from the total.

    Furthermore, the net carb tool isnt used by the Food and Drug Administration or the ADA.

    This carb counter may be a valuable resource. It provides data for hundreds of foods on total carbs, net carbs, fiber, protein and fat.

    SUMMARY

    Starches and sugars raise blood sugar levels, but dietary fiber does not. The sugar alcohol maltitol may also raise blood sugar.

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    When Should I Eat If I Have Diabetes

    Some people with diabetes need to eat at about the same time each day. Others can be more flexible with the timing of their meals. Depending on your diabetes medicines or type of insulin, you may need to eat the same amount of carbohydrates at the same time each day. If you take mealtime insulin, your eating schedule can be more flexible.

    If you use certain diabetes medicines or insulin and you skip or delay a meal, your blood glucose level can drop too low. Ask your health care team when you should eat and whether you should eat before and after physical activity.

    When To Contact Your Healthcare Provider

    Hyperglycemia can turn into a medical emergency like DKA and HHS that requires immediate intervention by your practitioner or a local emergency department. If you have two blood sugar readings of 300 mg/dL or more, or have blood sugar above your target range for more than a week, seek immediate medical help.

    Signs of hyperglycemia include:

    • Ketones in your urine
    • Stomach pain, nausea, or vomiting
    • Shortness of breath

    Recommended Reading: Causes Of High Glucose Levels

    Monitor Your Carbohydrate Intake

    What and how you eat is a very important factor in keeping your blood sugar levels in the healthy range. Choosing foods that stabilize your blood sugar and keep high blood sugar spikes to a minimum will help you stave off a diabetes diagnosis or help control existing diabetes. Some diets oversimplify a comprehensive food intake, and simply tell you to limit carbs or focus on low-carb foods. Its more complicated than that.

    However, tracking your intake of foods that contribute to high blood sugar levelssuch as baked goods, processed foods, fried foods, and sweeteners can be a good place to start modifying your diet to balance your blood sugar.

    Watching For Symptoms Isnt Enough

    8 Foods That Lower Blood Sugar In Minutes

    Although you may think youll know from experience when your blood sugar is out of whack, regular monitoring is the only way to truly make sure.

    Its important to keep in mind that the symptoms of high or low blood sugars may fade away after several years of living with diabetes, especially if your blood sugars havent been well controlled, says Garvey.

    Also, some of the symptoms of high blood sugars and low blood sugars are the same, so its important to check your blood sugar first, if possible, before treating it, she says.

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    Dont Rely On Supplements Or Vitamins

    Theres no shortcut to maintaining good blood sugars. A supplement or vitamin alone will not give you healthy blood sugar levels and they can interact negatively with other medications. Speak to your healthcare provider and perhaps ask for a referral for a dietitian who specializes in blood sugar control before incorporating dietary supplements, shakes, or vitamins to achieve blood sugar control.

    RELATED: What is the best diabetes diet?

    Tips To Lower Blood Sugar Naturally

    Experts agree that individuals living with type 2 diabetes can improve their symptoms with a few simple lifestyle tweaks.

    Its the Holy Grail for people with diabetes: Checking your blood sugar and seeing the numbers right in line. Can lifestyle changes help? Yes, says Jill Weisenberger, RDN, a diabetes nutrition expert based in Newport News, Virginia.

    If you have diabetes, lowering blood sugar isnt just a short-term goal according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , it helps prevent or delay diabetes complications, including heart, kidney, eye, and nerve diseases. It can change the course of the disease entirely.

    Itâs 100 percent important that try and lower their blood sugars through dietary approaches first, says Jessica Crandall Snyder, RD, CDCES, with Vital RD in Denver. For some people, it not only can be preventive, but it can also help with reversal of the actual disease.

    Crandall Snyder says making a few key lifestyle changes can sometimes eliminate the need for medication. Poking yourself with insulin isnât fun, she says. Diabetes is a progressive disease, and you really have to figure out how to take control.

    Here are 10 ways to do it, no prescriptions required.

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    Offset Carbs With Fat And Protein

    When carbs are consumed as part of a meal that includes protein and fat, they affect blood sugar more slowly. For this reason, planning ahead for healthy, balanced meals is fundamental to good diabetes management, says Jenny Champion, RD, a diabetes educator, personal trainer, and editor of Posh Paleo Magazine.

    To make sure your meals are well-balanced, the ADA suggests this method of filling your plate:

    • Half your plate: non-starchy vegetables, such as spinach, carrots, tomatoes, or greens
    • A quarter of your plate: grains and starchy foods, such as whole grain noodles, rice, or potatoes
    • A quarter of your plate: lean protein, such as beef, fish, chicken, or tofu
    • Add an 8-ounce glass of low-fat milk and a piece of fruit or half a cup of fruit salad on the side.

    Remember that even if you eat the right foods, eating too much can cause your blood sugar to rise. Keeping track of what youre eating and how much youre eating and then how it affects blood sugar is the best way to stay on top of your diabetes, Champion says.

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