5 Top Diabetes Management Tips!

The entire month of November marks Diabetes Awareness Month, so in 5 Top Diabetes Management Tips we’re aiming to raise awareness for diabetes, a term which refers to two very serious, yet different, types of condition- type 1 and type 2.  Managing to control blood sugar levels is an essential part of both types of diabetes, and also a useful tool for non-diabetics to get the most out of their health and fitness regimes, making it important to know which types of foods can raise your blood sugar and in what way. 

When eating foods which have carbohydrates in them insulin is needed in order to bring blood sugars back to normal again. Excess insulin in the body can lead to weight gain and big swings in blood sugar level can make you feel lethargic, both of which can ultimately ruin your health and fitness goals. These tips below will help diabetics and non-diabetics alike to be aware of how food can keep blood sugars stable in order to avoid unnecessary insulin spikes, which will make you feel great!

1. Go Carb free
Foods without carbohydrates will not require insulin as they have no effect on blood sugar levels, and so avoid the big rise and fall of blood sugar that comes with more carb heavy foods. Opt for an omelette for lunch instead of a sandwich, or a handful of nuts instead of biscuits around snack time. Foods high in fats are also thought to slow the uptake of sugar into the bloodstream so an overall winner!

2. Eat Low GI foods
Glycaemic Index is used to measure the effect foods have on blood sugar after eating. Foods such as peas, beans, lentils, whole wheat pasta, apples, yoghurt and milk spike blood sugar less than bananas, raisins, rice, oats or sweet potatoes.

3. Eat little and often
Eating smaller amounts of carbohydrates more frequently will stop big swings in blood sugar, however it won’t decrease the total amount of carbohydrate you’ll be eating, so be mindful!

4. Eat your juices – fibre
As much as we all love a good smoothie or OJ, they’re not great for maintaining a steady blood sugar level because the sugar in the fruit gets easily absorbed into your blood. Step away from the blender and choose to eat your fruit instead – the higher fibre content means they are digested more slowly so you’ll get less of a sugar rush.

5. Spice it up!
Some studies suggest that adding cinnamon into your diet can lead to lower fasting blood sugar because it stimulates insulin production. More research is needed in this area, but it can’t hurt to spice things up a bit every once in awhile!

It is important to keep in mind that these foods will not replace medication or insulin regimes which will be prescribed to diabetics by their doctor. However, being in better control of your blood sugar is beneficial to everyone and can have brilliant effects on your general wellbeing.   

Helena Cooper

Helena is a History graduate with a passion for all things health and fitness. After running for many years, injury forced her to look for new forms of exercise which opened her eyes to the fitness world. Helena takes a keen interest in social media in all forms and uses it to learn about and share developments in nutrition and fitness. Having been diagnosed with Type One Diabetes at the age of 6, Helena strongly believes in the power of food and fitness to optimise happiness and wellbeing.

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