Monday, June 15, 2015

10 Natural Ways to Lower Blood Sugar

High blood sugar, or hyperglycemia, is something that many people living with diabetes face regularly. You may feel nauseous, lethargic, and irritable, and find yourself extremely thirsty and having to go to the bathroom nearly constantly.  There are a lot of natural ways to lower your blood sugar levels, and many lifestyle behaviors that can make them consistently lower.

1. Exercise can be a fast and natural way to lower your blood sugar, instead of using insulin or other glucose-lowering medications. Engaging in physical activity increases your body’s sensitivity to insulin and makes your muscles take in more glucose so less is left circulating in the bloodstream.

2. When you relax, your body releases chemicals that lower your blood sugar. Conversely, when you’re stressed, your body releases hormones that make your blood sugar spike. A body under stress releases glucose-raising hormones like adrenaline and cortisol because it activates the fight-or-flight mode we use for survival.

3. The more you drink when you are experiencing high blood sugar, the better. Drink at least two glasses of water, with one right after the other. Water helps your body flush glucose out of your system and stabilize sugars in the bloodstream. 

4. Negative emotions such as anxiety, fear and sorrow can raise blood glucose levels. On the other hand, positive emotions like gratitude and wholesome behaviors like laughter may positively affect blood sugar. So laugh a little more, and stop taking life so seriously.

5. Protein can be a good blood stabilizer because it slows the absorption rate of glucose. Examples of healthy proteins to reduce high blood sugar include turkey lunchmeat, yogurt without added sugar, or an ounce of cheese. Ask your diabetes healthcare professional, such as your CDE or dietitian, for small protein snacks they recommend to lower blood sugar.

6. If you have diabetes you may experience a low blood sugar reaction called hypoglycemia every now and then. You need to treat these lows effectively without over-treating them. Over-treating can lead to high blood sugar, putting you on the blood sugar rollercoaster. Plan ahead for hypoglycemia with a set amount of carbohydrates to raise your blood sugar levels, like glucose tablets, hard candies, 1 tablespoon of honey, 2 tablespoons of raisins, or ½ cup of juice or non-diet soda.

7. The amount of sleep you get affects the release of glucagon and insulin, hormones that regulate your blood sugar levels. Blood glucose increases with the secretion of glucagon and decreases with the secretion of insulin. Getting enough sleep allows your body to keep your blood sugar levels within healthy parameters during your waking hours.

8. Recent research suggests that 20 to 30 minutes of exercise before a meal can help prevent post-dinner blood sugars from rising. A study published in the July 2014 issue of Diabetologia found that “exercise snacks” before main meals may help improve glycemic control in people with insulin resistance.

9. Your body breaks down white grain and sugar products very fast. You need foods that digest slower and are full of nutritious components your body needs. When your blood sugars are high, stay away from processed foods.

10. Supplements can be an excellent, natural way to provide your body with the extra nutrients it needs to successfully balance blood glucose levels. There are several supplements that are suggested to help regulate blood sugars, and you should discuss them with your healthcare provider before implementing any into your diabetes treatment plan. Research around diabetes supplements is somewhat limited and/or of questionable quality, so you should proceed with the advice of your doctor and with your own caution.

Source: Diabetic Connect

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