3 Surefire Ways Blood Sugar Control Will Drive Your Business Into the Ground
Getting enough sleep, exercising regularly and managing stress are all important for keeping blood sugar levels within the target range. (Check with your doctor to set a target range.)
Try to get at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week. Exercise helps prevent prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, and it can also help manage high blood sugar levels.
1. Stay Active
The amount of sugar in your bloodstream is called your blood glucose level. Your body uses insulin to keep it healthy, but you also need physical activity to help with blood sugar control. Exercise reduces your risk of developing pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes, and it can help keep your blood sugar in a healthier range. But before you start hitting the gym, check with your doctor. They can help you set goals, and offer suggestions about the best exercises for your body type and condition.
Getting at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day can improve blood sugar control. And it doesn’t have to be a hard workout. Even a slow walk can make a difference. Start small and work your way up to 30 minutes on most days.
Regular physical activity can lower your long-term blood sugar levels as measured by your A1C. It also helps you lose weight, which improves your insulin sensitivity. And it can help you manage the stress hormones that raise your blood sugar.
In addition to daily activity, make sure to get two days of strength training each week. This can include exercises that use your own body weight, such as pushups and lunges. And try to do a variety of exercises that target different muscle groups on each day.
Some types of exercise can cause a temporary drop in your blood sugar, known as delayed-onset hypoglycemia. This happens because your body draws on the reserve sugar in your liver and muscles for energy during exercise, leaving little to spare. You can avoid this by having a carbohydrate snack on hand, such as a granola bar or trail mix. And you should always check your blood sugar before and after exercise, and retest 15 minutes later.
2. Eat Healthy
When you eat, the carbohydrates and sugars in your food turn into glucose, which enters your bloodstream. Insulin helps your body use glucose for energy, and keeping your blood sugar in a target range reduces your risk of complications from diabetes, including vision problems (retinopathy), kidney disease (nephropathy) and nerve issues (neuropathy).
One thing that can lead to a spike in blood sugar is eating carbs without protein or fat, such as grabbing a piece of fruit (carb) with a hard-boiled egg (protein). Protein and fat slow down digestion, so they help buffer any rise in blood sugar after you eat.
Instead, eat whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and dairy. In addition to helping you maintain a healthy weight, these foods provide the vitamins and minerals your body needs for good health.
Limit foods with added sugar, such as pies and cakes, candy, cookies and soda. And if you’re going to drink a sweetened beverage, choose water. Also, beware that some drinks contain more calories than you might think. For example, fruit juice and smoothies and some sports drinks are high in calories and sugar.
Stress levels can have an impact on your blood sugar, too. The hormones your body produces in response to long-term stress may prevent insulin from working properly, which can raise your blood sugar. Try to minimize your stress levels by learning relaxation techniques, getting enough sleep and setting limits for yourself.
Getting regular physical activity is another important step toward better blood sugar control. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity most days of the week, such as brisk walking, biking or dancing. Combining aerobic exercise with strength training exercises a few times per week improves blood sugar control even more than either type of exercise alone.