Avoiding the Imbalanced Blood Sugar Roller Coaster



The holidays increase intake of sweets, breads, and carbohydrate-rich meals, not only making people feel tired (it’s not the turkey), jittery, and moody, but also contributing to what is commonly called the “flu season,” when in fact it is likely the “sugar season” wreaking havoc on the immune system.  It isn’t the holidays that increase blood sugar.  Actually, a few days here and there might affect your short-term health, but doesn’t make a big difference in long term health.  It is the routine spikes and dips that are a common cause of most disease including autoimmunity, heart disease, and cancer.

Most women that develop gestational diabetes or hypoglycemia in pregnancy usually come into pregnancy with imbalanced blood sugar; pregnancy just exacerbates the condition or brings it to light. Because of these likely pre-existing conditions, most of these women will continue to develop Type II Diabetes later in life if lifestyles don’t drastically change.  Their children are more likely to develop diabetes as well, possibly in childhood. Reducing blood sugar for long term often means significant community lifestyle changes.

It’s not enough to cut out sugar.  Address underlying root-causes like stress, poor sleep, autoimmunity, Lyme disease, and gut health, which disrupt hormone function and increase blood sugar.  Get to a place where you don’t crave sweetness as much anymore by eating fresh, nutrient-dense foods.  Strive to stop relying on grains, flour, and flour-products (bread, crackers, pasta…etc.) to fill your belly.  And because each person reacts to each food

differently, find out what foods and habits nourish you. A diet and lifestyle recall with a manual, or continuous, glucometer can help.

All food turns to sugar in the body.  Sugar is our body’s main source of quick energy, and our brain craves it and needs it.  The faster something turns to sugar in the body, the faster we can use it for energy.  However, this fast change to sugar means a higher blood sugar spike and then a big drop.  These big spikes and dips cause sweet cravings, addiction begins, the cycle repeats, increasing insulin and cortisol… and long-term disease.

SPEED OF DIGESTING TO SUGAR

  1. Sugar, sweeteners (syrups, jams, agave, coconut sugar…etc.), fruit juice, sodas
  2. Sweet Fruit like dates, grapes, apples, peach, pear, pineapple, bananas…etc.
  3. Tart Fruit like berries, kiwi…etc.
  4. High Starch & Sweet Vegetables, Flour, Cereal, & Grains like rice, corn, potatoes, sweet lettuces, beets, carrots…etc.
  5. Low Starch High FIber Vegetables & Legumes like broccoli, bitter greens, kale, spinach, lentils, beans, peas…etc.
  6. Nuts and Seeds and other high fat foods
  7. Meat and eggs and other high protein foods

It is important that our blood sugar remains as stable as possible. We need all natural foods (and fruit is not a bad guy).  Though, the less sweet, and less refined, a food is, the slower it digests into sugar.  This reduces blood sugar spikes and keeps us satisfied longer with more sustained energy.

TIPS TO BALANCE BLOOD SUGAR

  • Be in a restful & joyful mood before eating
  • Optimize sleep & balance stress
  • Optimize gut health & the microbiomes
  • Significantly reduce added sweeteners
  • Significantly reduce grains and flours
  • Eat fresh whole plants as the main foods
  • Stop drinking coffee & stimulants daily
  • No “naked” carbs. Always eat high-protein foods with your sweet foods. (Steak and cake, or Tuna with 1 piece of bread)
  • Cook and then cool completely before eating high starch foods like potatoes, rice, and oats (you can reheat after cooling)
  • Eat leafy greens first, fats and protein second, and carbs last during your meal
  • Eat no more than one grain item daily
  • Grill, bake, or boil rather than fry/pan fry
  • Eat bitters with sweets and proteins with fats (i.e. Celery and Peanut Butter, not Apples and Peanut Butter. Beef and butter, not bread and butter)
  • Eat at least 30 grams of protein for breakfast (within 30 minutes of waking), and 20 grams protein for your other meals
  • Eat bitters (like broccoli sprouts or bitter herbs) 10-20 minutes before every meal. Taste bitter flavors for this to be helpful
  • Rarely eat treats or breads; but if you do, use nut/seed flour instead of grain flours
  • 2 Tblsp Apple Cider Vinegar before meals
  • Supplement with Cinnamon, Garlic, Biotin, and Chromium
  • Walk at least 10 minutes immediately after every meal and get more active so your body uses the carbs and sugar you eat

 

How do you intentionally prevent blood sugar spikes and dips?