KOMPAS.com – Blood sugar High blood pressure or what is known as hyperglycemia can cause diabetes and prediabetes.
Prediabetes is a condition in which blood sugar we are tall, but not tall enough to be classified as diabetic.
Our bodies will usually manage blood sugar levels by producing insulin, a hormone that allows cells to use the sugar circulating in the blood.
As such, insulin is the most important regulator of blood sugar levels.
However, several factors can interfere with blood sugar management and cause hyperglycemia.
Therefore, keep blood sugar up staying stable is very important for everyone (whether diabetic or not) because chronically high blood sugar levels can lead to complications and are life-threatening.
Well, as reported by the Healthline page, here are some of the easiest ways to maintain our blood sugar levels naturally.
1. Exercise regularly
Regular exercise can help us achieve and maintain a moderate weight which improves insulin sensitivity.
Increased insulin sensitivity means cells can more effectively use the sugar available in our bloodstream.
In addition, exercise can also help muscles use blood sugar for energy and muscle contraction.
If you have problems with blood sugar management, consider getting regular checkups before and after exercise.
This will help us learn how we can respond to various activities and keep blood sugar levels from getting too high or low.
Some recommended exercises include walking and simple resistance exercises such as squats or leg lifts.
Other useful forms of exercise include weightlifting, brisk walking, running, cycling, dancing, hiking, swimming, and more.
In fact, any regular activity that gets us up and moving — regardless of intensity — can help maintain blood sugar levels.
Try to start a 10 minute training session 3 times a day for 5 days, aiming for 150 minutes per week.
2. Manage carbohydrate intake
Carbohydrate intake greatly affects blood sugar levels.
This is because our bodies break down carbohydrates into sugars, especially glucose. Then, insulin helps the body use and store it for energy.
When we eat too many carbohydrates or have insulin function problems, this process fails and blood glucose levels can rise.
Therefore, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends that people with diabetes regulate their carbohydrate intake by counting carbohydrates and being aware of how much they need.
Several studies have found that it can help us plan meals more precisely and help reduce blood sugar levels.
It’s also important to note that a low-carb diet and a no-carb diet are not the same thing.
We can still eat some carbohydrates while monitoring blood sugar. However, prioritizing whole grains over processed and refined carbohydrates provides greater nutritional value while helping lower blood sugar levels.
3. Eat more fiber
Fiber can slow down the digestion of carbohydrates and absorption of sugar, thereby increasing blood sugar levels gradually.
There are two types of fiber namely insoluble and soluble. While both are important, soluble fiber has been explicitly shown to improve blood sugar management, whereas insoluble fiber has not been shown to have this effect.
A high-fiber diet is also known to increase the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar and minimize blood sugar drops. This can help better manage type 1 diabetes.
There are also foods that are high in fiber such as vegetables, fruits, nuts, and whole grains.
The recommended daily fiber intake is about 25 grams for women and 35 grams for men. That’s about 14 grams for every 1,000 calories.
Read also: 5 Good Habits to Control Blood Sugar Levels
4. Drink water and stay hydrated
Drinking enough water can help us keep our blood sugar levels in a healthy range.
Apart from preventing dehydration, staying hydrated can also help the kidneys get rid of excess sugar through urine.
One review of observational studies showed that those who drank more water had a lower risk of developing high blood sugar levels.
Drinking water regularly can also rehydrate the blood, lower blood sugar levels, and reduce the risk of diabetes.
Remember that water and other zero-calorie drinks are best.
Avoid sugar-sweetened options, as these can increase blood glucose, promote weight gain, and increase the risk of diabetes.
5. Control the portion of food
Portion control can help you regulate your calorie intake while maintaining a moderate weight.
This is because weight management promotes healthy blood sugar levels and has been shown to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
In addition, monitoring the size of food portions also helps prevent spikes in blood sugar.
So before eating, we should measure the portion of the meal or use a smaller plate.
Also, read food labels and check serving sizes, keep a food journal, and eat slowly.
Read also: Effective Diet Lowers Blood Sugar
6. Choose foods with a low glycemic index
The glycemic index (GI) measures how quickly carbohydrates break down during digestion and how quickly our bodies absorb them.
It also affects how quickly our blood sugar levels rise.
The glycemic index divides foods into low, medium, and high, and ranks them on a scale of 0-100.
Foods with a low glycemic index usually have a rating of 55 or less.
The amount and type of carbohydrates you eat largely determines how food affects blood sugar levels.
In particular, eating foods with a low glycemic index has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.
Some examples of foods with a low to moderate glycemic index include Greek yogurt, oats, nuts, whole grain pasta, and non-starchy vegetables.
Furthermore, adding protein or healthy fats can also help minimize post-meal spikes in blood sugar.
7. Try to manage stress levels
Stress can affect our blood sugar levels.
When stressed, the body releases hormones called glucagon and cortisol, which cause blood sugar levels to rise.
One study in a group of students showed that exercise, relaxation, and meditation can significantly reduce stress and lower blood sugar levels.
Relaxation methods such as yoga can also be a stress reliever that can help improve insulin secretion problems among people with chronic diabetes.
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