Blood sugar levels are something most of us don’t think about, unless we’re concerned about diabetes (or already know we have it). But even if you aren’t diabetic, blood sugar levels should concern you. If your blood sugar levels run consistently high, over time you are at increased risk for insulin resistance and diabetes. Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) can also damage your blood vessels, nerves and organs.
You might suspect high blood sugar if you have frequent headaches, feel thirsty a lot, experience fatigue, or need to urinate frequently. You might also have trouble concentrating or notice that your vision seems blurry. Oddly enough, hyperglycemia can even lead to unexplained weight loss.
The first step is to see your physician and get tested. If your blood sugar is running high, you can also try these methods to lower it. Do keep in mind that for actual diabetes, you will need to work with your doctor, monitor your blood sugar, and possibly also use insulin to lower your blood sugar. The tips shared here are aimed at people whose blood sugar is just a little bit on the high side.
Exercise. Exercise causes the muscles to take in more glucose from the blood, therefore lowering blood sugar.
Opt for complex carbs over simple carbs. Complex carbs from whole grains, veggies, and legumes are digested more slowly, helping to keep your blood sugar from spiking. Opt for those instead of simple carbs like refined sugar and white flour.
Pair those carbs with protein. Protein further reduces blood sugar spikes. So, pair fruit with cheese or lean meat, try sandwich meat with your pita or bagel, and so on.
Eat more fiber. Fiber intake has been shown to reduce the risk of diabetes, heart disease, some cancers, and other serious health conditions. You should be eating between 25 and 38 grams of fiber daily, from sources like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Get plenty of quality sleep. Poor sleep habits can alter your hormones that regulate appetite and metabolism. You might also release more cortisol, the stress hormone, which has been directly correlated with diabetes risk. So make sure you’re getting enough sleep, at regular intervals, and that you’re not waking frequently throughout the night.
Again, do not try these methods in place of visiting a physician. Have your blood sugar tested, and maintain regular check-ups. In the meantime, these methods are good for everyone to try, and if you know your blood sugar runs high you should definitely make them a regular part of your lifestyle.