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5 tips to lower blood sugar

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  • What is blood sugar?
  • What triggers high blood sugar?
  • What are the symptoms of high blood sugar?
  • How do I measure my blood sugar?
  • How do I lower my blood sugar levels naturally without medication?

Do you like snacking? Unfortunately, if you don’t get your sweet tooth under control over a long period of time, it can have bitter consequences: Diabetes can lead to numerous damages such as impotence, kidney failure and blindness. 25 percent of all Germans suffer from diabetes or a precursor to the disease over the course of their lives. But even if you’re not one of them (yet), it’s smart to keep your blood sugar levels in a healthy range. These expert tips will help you.

What is blood sugar?

Blood sugar is the amount of glucose, i.e. the amount of sugar, in the blood. This increases as soon as you eat food. If you eat simple sugars, i.e. glucose or fructose, the proportion increases quickly. With multiple sugars the rise takes a little longer. In order for the sugar in the cells to be converted into energy, the body needs a hormone produced by the pancreas, insulin. It acts like a lock: it docks onto the body cell and transfers the glucose it has absorbed from the blood into the cell.

In people with diabetes, the pancreas does not produce enough insulin, so this process only works to a limited extent or no longer works at all. Then the blood sugar level is usually too high, which can damage your blood vessels and numerous glucose-sensitive organs such as the pancreas, liver, kidneys and eyes in the long term.

What triggers high blood sugar?

All foods that contain carbohydrates increase your blood sugar. The faster the carbohydrates can be broken down, the higher the blood sugar level rises. It is important for your health to eat carbohydrates that slowly raise blood sugar. For this reason, you should eat more grains or whole grain products, because the multiple sugars in them first have to be broken down and therefore only increase blood sugar slowly. On the other hand, sweets, white bread, ready meals and soft drinks contain mainly simple sugar molecules, which quickly cause blood sugar to rise very high.

What are the symptoms of high blood sugar?

These following symptoms indicate elevated blood sugar levels:

  • strong feeling of thirst
  • frequent urination
  • fatigue
  • Weak drive
  • nausea
  • dizziness
  • Disturbance of consciousness or unconsciousness

How do I measure my blood sugar?

Do you like to eat sweets and some of the symptoms mentioned above could apply to you? Then you should have your blood sugar checked.

Diabetics must measure their blood sugar regularly to avoid life-threatening hypoglycemia. There are a variety of blood glucose meters for this purpose. In most cases, a drop of blood from your finger is placed on a test strip, which is then inserted into a measuring device, which then calculates the exact value. If there is someone in your family or friend circle who is diabetic, you can ask if you can have your blood tested in the morning and evening for one day.

To find out how your blood sugar is as a non-diabetic, there are urine test strips that also show the glucose value. This is not quite as accurate as a blood test, but if there are abnormal values ​​that can be easily read using a color scale, it can be a reason to seek medical attention. If left untreated, permanently elevated blood sugar levels can have serious health consequences.

How do I lower my blood sugar levels naturally without medication?

If your doctor diagnoses type 2 diabetes, you will probably be prescribed tablets first. But you can also influence the disease in a natural way or, even better, even prevent it.

It is important that you eat a healthy, low-sugar, wholesome diet, exercise a lot and lose excess weight. A study shows that overweight people have higher insulin levels than people of normal weight, even though they ate the same meal. Other studies also show that overweight and obesity can be factors in insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes. Belly fat in particular has been shown to correlate with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. That’s why it’s important to minimize excess fat through a healthy diet and enough exercise. You should also avoid alcohol and cigarettes. This is how you can stop smoking.

Blood sugar can be reduced naturally, especially with a healthy diet, i.e. lots of fruit and vegetables. Apples, for example, contain pectin, a vegetable polysaccharide. It ensures that glucose is only slowly absorbed into the blood. But the anthocyanin contained in blueberries, a plant pigment, also helps to lower blood sugar levels. In addition, more foods with unsaturated fats, such as olive oil, soy products, fish and nuts, should be on the menu. But also fiber-rich foods such as whole grain products, beans or legumes, as their consumption causes carbohydrates to enter the blood more slowly and thus only moderately increases blood sugar levels. Studies even show that a low-carb diet with few, simple carbohydrates lowers insulin levels.

Professor Gregory Dodell, an endocrinologist from New York, looks after numerous patients with pre-diabetes in his practice. In addition to suggestions for healthy eating and normal weight, he achieves the best success with these 5 tips to combat elevated blood sugar levels:

1. Release your tension

“There are around 40 factors that influence blood sugar levels,” explains Professor Gregory Dodell, “stress is one of them.” Stress leads to the release of the hormone cortisone, which in turn leads to an increase in blood sugar levels. For many people, stress becomes noticeable through tension in certain muscles, such as in the hips. In such situations, it helps to pause, take a deep breath and relax the area in question. Mediation or mindfulness exercises can also help reduce stress.

2. Listen to your body

Often you eat according to a specific plan or what a calorie tracker or app recommends. That’s okay, especially if you want to reach a specific nutritional goal. On the other hand, it can prevent you from feeling what makes you feel good and productive. “Our bodies are the best trackers ever invented,” says Dodell. Use it more!

Simply measuring your body weight does not mean a lifestyle change. “You should focus on real behavioral changes,” advises expert Dodell. You can’t get up in the morning and say: “From now on I will weigh 5 kilos less.” But you can say, “From now on, I’m going to take a walk every day.” Or: “I’ll eat more vegetables from today.” Both help to lower blood sugar levels.

4. Eat what you want and need

If you crave pasta, eat pasta! “Eating healthy doesn’t mean giving up something, but rather choosing what your body needs,” the endocrinologist is convinced. For example, if you make spaghetti, combine it with ingredients that contain proteins (e.g. cheese, eggs, fish), fiber (e.g. vegetables) and fat (e.g. olive oil). All three components ensure that the increase in blood sugar levels caused by the carbohydrate-rich pasta is less severe.

“Sport and other exercise make the body more sensitive to the hormone insulin, so that more sugar from the blood ends up in the cells,” explains endocrinologist Dodell. For example, it is recommended to walk to work or ride a bike. Take the stairs instead of the elevator or take a walk during your lunch break instead of sitting down again. Yoga or Pilates exercises are also suitable. The important thing is that you are motivated. So choose the activities that you enjoy the most.

You can influence high blood sugar levels and your risk of developing type 2 diabetes yourself. Make sure you eat a healthy diet, get enough exercise, maintain a normal weight and relax. All of this is not only good for your body, but also for your well-being. Try it!

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