20 years ago, I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. After I was diagnosed my parents weighed everything I ate, counted carbs, and decided on how much insulin I needed. For every single meal.
As I grew up, I began to understand what foods were good for my blood sugar levels and what foods were bad. Blood sugar levels are tested in millimoles (mmol), which is a tiny tiny unit. Regardless of how big or small a millimole is, a typical blood sugar reading is between 4.0 and 8.0 mmol.
When I was first diagnosed my blood sugar was (roughly) 45mmol.
When you have high blood sugar you feel slow and sluggish. You feel like there’s too much in you and you can’t get it out. You feel terrible. Mood swings. Frequent urination. Sick, flushed, full of energy that can’t be used.
Type 1 diabetes means you’re insulin dependent. Type 2 diabetes means you’re insulin resistant. Pre-diabetes means your body is becoming more insulin resistant. There are steps to take to protect yourself from becoming pre-diabetic, mostly exercise and diet.
Here’s a list of foods that help control and maintain good blood sugar levels:
Avocados have monounsaturated fats that slow distribution of sugars into your bloodstream. This prevents blood sugar spikes because, while the carbs will still break down into sugar, they are broken down and distributed more slowly.
Olive oil also contains monounsaturated fats, so it basically does the same thing as avocados. It is just more applicable than avocados; you can use olive oil for a lot of cooking and baking.
Blueberries (as well as avocados) are a great source of anthrocyanins, a common pigment in colorful plants, which increases insulin sensitivity and inhibits certain digestive enzymes.
Cherries have the same attributes as blueberries. Both are good pre-meal ideas because they help your body react to insulin and slow digestion.
Apple Cider Vinegar
ACV is high in acetic acid, which lowers certain enzymes that help digest food. Drink a glass of apple cider vinegar and water before eating, or start dinner with a vinaigrette-based salad dressing to help digest more slowly and prevent high blood sugar.
Most spices increase your body’s receptivity to insulin. The best spices? Cinnamon and garlic. Cinnamon readies your muscles for when they come into contact with insulin. Raw garlic is shown to reduce glucose, as well as cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
A good natural source of protein and fats, nuts like almonds, pistachios, walnuts, pecans, and cashews are more than just delicious – they help control your blood sugar levels.
Start your day with a nice glass of ACV/ water, have yogurt with cinnamon and blueberries, snack on almonds, eat guacamole with lunch, grill fish with olive oil and garlic for dinner, and have a cherry-based dessert to manage and maintain good blood sugar levels all day.
Take this from someone who needs to count his carbs and manually inject insulin – it’s better when your pancreas does it for you. You just have to know how to help it.
And now you know.