High blood sugar is one of the most common diseases whose numbers are surging all over the world.
A research study by Indian researchers concludes that the daily sugar consumption must be less than 10%. It also puts light on how increased sugar consumption has increased the chances of obesity and Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. 1
High blood sugar occurs due to insulin resistance in the body. Also called Hyperglycemia, it is also associated with diabetes. This is divided into type 1 type 2 diabetes and pre-diabetes.
Elevated levels of sugar intake put forward the risk of various chronic conditions and ailments such as obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, fatty liver disease, and cardio-related diseases as well.
Before we move forward to ‘Controlling blood sugar for weight loss, it is important to note the following:
Sugar is of two types:
- Natural Sugars:
This is the naturally occurring organic sugar present in fruits and vegetables. It is completely safe and beneficial for the body.
- Added Sugars:
One of the most unhealthy ingredients present in a regular modern-day diet is added sugars.
Added sugar, as the name suggests is the common sugar that is added to highly processed foods such as cakes, cookies, candy, soft drinks, etc.
The most common added sugars are regular table sugar (sucrose) and high fructose corn syrup.
It is important to limit the consumption of added sugars, as it can contribute to weight gain and various other ailments mentioned above.
Some reports and data presented by the American Heart Association state that the maximum amount of sugar a person can consume per day must be:
- Women: 100 Calories per day (25 grams or 6 teaspoons)
- Men: 150 calories per day (37.5 grams or 9 teaspoons)
It is quite important that you don’t consume excess added sugars as it is detrimental to the body and will not provide any health benefits.
Following listed are 8 ways for Controlling blood sugar for weight loss:
- Stay Hydrated: The importance of drinking water regularly and staying hydrated is essential to maintain vitality and aid in the smooth functioning of the body.
Water can dilute your blood and aid the kidneys in flushing out excess sugar through urine.
It can also prevent dehydration especially caused during those hot summer months.
- Lowering Carb Intake: A patient suffering from high blood sugar levels can benefit even from minor changes in the diet. These dietary changes can be highly beneficial in controlling the condition and aid in the normal and healthy functioning of the body.
One must cut down their carbohydrate intake as carbohydrate molecule breaks down into simple sugar resulting in an increase in blood sugar levels.
The pancreas release insulin that converts glucose into energy which is used by the cells. However, a diabetic patient may fail to release as much insulin as required to break the glucose into energy due to which the blood sugar level keeps on rising. Hence, it is recommended that one must consume a balanced diet that does not include high carbohydrate quantities.
- Increasing Intake Of Fibre: Super important in a regular diet, fibers aid in easy digestion. Along with this, they can also help in lowering blood sugar levels by reducing sugar absorption in the body.
Now, fiber is also of two types- soluble and insoluble.
Both are equally important; however, consumption of soluble fiber has proven to be more beneficial for diabetic patients. A meta-review about fiber intake and Type 2 diabetes mellitus concludes that soluble fiber intake is comparatively more beneficial for diabetic patients. 2
The following food items are recommended for high fiber intake:
- Whole grains
- Fruits like grapes, apples, and blueberries
- Legumes such as beans, peas, chickpeas, and lentils
- Vegetables like garlic, sweet potatoes, and yams
- Regular Exercise & Maintenance Of Weight: Exercising is very important for the body. Exercise can help you maintain a healthy body with better metabolism, and it also reduces the chances of obesity.
A good workout gives the body a burst of energy and bliss that every one of us requires from time to time. So why not engage in a regular workout? It’s your machine, and just like any other one, it needs a little repair and oiling occasionally.
Regular exercise can also help in increasing insulin sensitivity. This will result in better processing of sugars within the body, thereby keeping the blood sugar levels in check.
Try cycling, running, brisk walking, weight lifting, swimming, dancing [aerobics or zumba], etc. Any form of physical activity to cheer yourself up and keep a check on blood sugar.
- Management Of Stress Levels: Those office deadlines, snooze alarms, pending work and assignments, angry colleagues or bosses, etc. aren’t doing any good to you, except by filling your head with so much stress, so much so that you gotta calm the mind down with a pill.
Along with stress, comes a trail of ailments that won’t do any good either. Diabetes is one of the consequences, as stress affects blood sugar levels.
Stress hormones which are cortisol and glucagon get activated once the mind starts taking up a lot of loads. These hormones react by increasing blood sugar levels.
Hence, the management of stress becomes extremely important for balanced blood sugar levels.
One can try some mindful exercises such as yoga and meditation to calm the soul and the mind. It will also help in providing a break from a stressful day and relax the body and fill it with tranquillity and fresh energy.
- Need Of Quality Sleep: 8 hours of sleep is super important as it helps the body to relax and go forward with its nightly functions and helps us, by enabling us to take the day off and spend some time in another world where no worries surround us.
Good sleep can aid in maintaining blood sugar levels and a healthy weight.
People who are sleep-deprived may suffer from critical metabolic hormones as they might get disrupted [due to inadequate sleep], increased levels of cortisol, weight gain, and insulin insensitivity.
Hence, don’t hold yourself back from getting that goodnight buzz as it is essential.
- Reducing Portion Size: This does not refer to starving yourself. Reducing your portion size can help in cutting down excess calories, maintaining a proper weight, and improving blood sugar levels; thereby reducing the risk of diabetes. 3
Portion sizes can be controlled by – using small plates, eating slowly, avoiding the all-you-can-eat buffets, measuring and weighing the portions, etc.
- Try Apple Cider Vinegar: You probably must be aware of the long list of benefits that ACV offers.
Some of the most highly-coveted ones are:
- Can kill harmful bacteria present in the body
- Boost skin health
- Aid in good cardio-health.
- Reduce blood sugar levels by improving insulin sensitivity.
Hence, it is to be noted that ACV is very beneficial for those suffering from diabetes. However, make sure to consult your doctor before including this in your diet, if you’re already consuming blood sugar-lowering medicines.