Eight Easy Hacks to Balance your Blood Sugar

Today’s article is based on the work of Jessie Inchausp√©, a French biochemist and bestselling author who is passionate about educating people on how to better manage their blood sugars. She takes the science behind what and how to eat accessible for people to understand in everyday terms.

Why are balanced blood sugars so important?

  1. These strategies will help prevent you from developing prediabetes or type 2 diabetes. Insulin resistance increases as we age, which is why people tend to get diagnosed as they get older.
  2. If you are the 1 in 8 people in the world who has been diagnosed with prediabetes or Type 2 diabetes, balancing your blood sugars will help to prevent your condition from getting worse and will help you go into remission.
  3. Science shows that balanced glucose levels help:
    • cravings/hunger
    • fatigue
    • brain fog/focus
    • fertility
    • hormonal disorders such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), menopause
    • skin disorders/wrinkles
    • sleep
    • mental health
    • immune function
    • and ultimately, aging

4. Steady glucose levels also reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, fatty liver disease, and cancer

Food is such an important element to how we relate to one another, how we celebrate and how we choose to nourish ourselves. This approach isn’t about introducing even more food rules – on the contrary, they are guidelines that can be easily incorporated into your daily life and habits so that you can enjoy food! So without further ado, here they are:

  1. Eat a savoury breakfast, not a sweet one – this is probably the most important hack as it will determine how much you will crave sugar for the rest of the day. The first step to a day of steady glucose is to choose a savoury breakfast over a sweet one. Build it around protein, add fat, optional starch, and nothing sweet except whole fruit for taste. If it doesn’t keep you full for at least 4 hours, increase the protein or eat more. It’s always better to eat 2-3 square meals/day and eliminate snacks. If you find yourself getting hungry between meals, you aren’t eating enough.

2. Start your meals with a veggie starter – the fibre in non-starchy vegetables slows down the absorption of the sugars in the rest of the meal. So whenever possible, eat your salad first (and try to eat your starches at the end of your meal).

3. Try to eat your carbs last – just by changing the order of the food on your plate, you can reduce your blood sugar spikes by 75%. Start with eating your veggies first, followed by protein and fats, saving starches and sugars for last. The fibre in the vegetables, the protein and the fat all work synergistically help to slow down the release of the sugars in the carbohydrates in the tail end of the meal.

4. Add vinegar to your routine – Consume either vinegar or lemon juice before a meal to help reduce your blood sugar spike by 45%! Any type of vinegar will do (except for reduced balsamic vinegar syrups) and you need 3x as much lemon juice to get the same effect. You can have it in water before meals, or simply use a vinaigrette on your veggie starter for added benefit.

5. Eat sugar as your dessert, not on an empty stomach – if you know you are going to consume sugar, time it to eat it at the end of a meal or snack. If you must snack, have a savoury snack over a sweet one. Here are some examples of snacks that don’t cause sugar spikes:

  • A handful of baby carrots and a spoonful of hummus
  • A handful of macadamia nuts and a square of 90% dark chocolate
  • A hunk of cheese apple slices smeared with nut butter
  • Bell pepper slices dipped in a spoonful of guacamole
  • A hard-boiled egg with a dash of hot sauce
  • Lightly salted coconut slivers
  • Seeded crackers with a slice of cheese
  • A slice of ham
  • A soft-boiled egg with a dash of salt and pepper

6. Eat fruit whole. The fibre content of the fruit helps to blunt the impact of the fruit sugars on blood glucose. When we blend fruit into a smoothie, the fibre gets pulverized and is less effective in reducing blood sugars. When fruit is juiced, the fibre is removed entirely, and all you are left with is a glass of fruit sugars.

7. Move for 10 minutes after eating – Walking (or any type of movement) after a meal helps reduce the glucose spike of the meal – within 90 minutes after the end of the meal is ideal. If you’re out for dinner, even doing calf lifts in your chair can reduce your glucose levels by 30%.

8. Don’t eat your carbs naked – when you do choose to eat sugars or starches, combine them with fiber, fat and/or protein: any vegetables, avocado, pulses, butter, cheese, eggs, fish, Greek yogurt, meat, nuts, seeds to lower the glucose spike.

Of course, it isn’t possible to do all of these hacks, all of the time. By implementing some of them consistently, you will definitely notice the difference, without cutting calories or the foods you love. I do hope they empower you to fully enjoy the upcoming holiday season. For more information, visit www.glucosegoddess.com

Tasleem Kassam