How your blood sugar changes when you eat is a important indicator of your health. In this text please find 5 things you need to know about blood sugar control as well as one "blood sugar spikes" hack that works for everyone.
Everyone’s blood sugar changes after consuming foods/drinks
When you eat, the food makes its way down into your stomach where the digestion process begins. Then the partially digested food passes into your intestines, where enzymes continue to break down the components of your food into smaller building blocks.
Carbohydrates in your food are broken down into sugar (glucose), which passes through the walls of your intestines and into your blood. Once the sugar from your food enters your blood, it is transported around the body to wherever it’s needed.
Maintaining healthy blood sugar levels is vital for health
Long term high blood sugar can be harmful, damaging your cells and causing inflammation processes. Also, very low blood sugar is extremely dangerous too, but even more - moderately unhealthy glucose responses can lead to health problems.
Long term unhealthy blood sugar responses after food consumption have been linked to an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, having a heart attack or stroke, and even developing certain types of cancer. So maintaining your blood sugar levels at optimal values is one of crucial parts of staying healthy.
Unhealthy blood sugar responses after food consumption can damage your health in the long term
We all have increased blood sugar after we eat. It’s the job of a long, flat organ called the pancreas, to sense the amount of sugar in your bloodstream and act if the levels get too high or too low. When your blood sugar levels start to rise, your pancreas produces insulin. Insulin is a hormone that enables your cells to take up more sugar, helping your blood sugar levels return to a level that’s normal for you (sometime known as ‘baseline’).
The differences between a ‘healthy’ or ‘unhealthy’ response are about how high your blood sugar goes after you eat, how long it stays high, and whether your blood sugar dips below baseline before stabilizing.
A one-size-fits-all diet won’t work for everyone (even if it is low-carb)
Several diet patterns designed to combat unhealthy blood sugar responses have been created in recent years. They have been publicized as "the way" to lose weight, avoid chronic diseases, and support your health. But do these blood sugar focused diets work universally?
Most ‘blood sugar diets’ are low-carbohydrate diets. They claim to control your blood sugar by reducing unhealthy responses to food and preventing blood sugar spikes. Some fans of these diets point to studies where low-carbohydrate diets have improved blood sugar control in the majority of the participants. But here’s the catch: you are not the majority of people. You are you. Education is crucial as well as personalized approach on determing which diet suits you the most. In the end, scientifically is proven that everyone reacts differently to identical foods.
To maintain healthy blood sugar levels, you need to understand your own unique responses to food
Research is increasingly showing that different people responds differently on same foods. Even identical twins, who share all their genes, can have very different responses to the same foods.
That means that a diet that helps one person may not be right for you and could even be unhealthy. Improving your nutritional responses is not as simple as eating a particular prescribed diet or sticking to foods labelled as 'good for your blood sugar'. Keeping your blood sugar at healthy levels is all about eating the foods that you respond to best. To do that, you need to understand how your metabolism responds to different food - your ideal diet is the one that works best for you.
One blood sugar spikes hack that works for everyone
The good news is that you can help prevent these spikes in blood sugar by pairing certain foods together. Protein, fat and fiber require a little more work to be broken down than carbohydrates. This means these foods stay in our stomachs longer and take more time to enter the bloodstream. Pairing carbohydrate foods with a source of protein or fat and some fiber helps slow the absorption of the sugars into the bloodstream.
But what if you are in a hurry and stopped in bakery nearby? Protein and fibers are low for sure but you have your ace in the pocket, luckily fermented foods and drinks work the same! Consuming fermented foods and drinks before meal result in significantly less intense glucose spikes!