High blood sugar is an indicator that the body is unable to transport sugar from the blood to the cells that require it to produce energy. Prolonged high blood sugar can lead to diabetes.
Diabetes is a chronic condition that requires constant management and regular testing. High blood sugar can worsen the condition, as it leads to severe complications. While taking medicines and injections is one way to go, especially in the case of type 1 diabetes, some lifestyle changes can help with proper management.
Here are a few lifestyle-related changes you can try:
- Regular exercise
Exercise can increase insulin sensitivity through the loss of body weight. An increase in insulin sensitivity means that your body cells are able to better utilize the glucose available in the blood. It also helps your muscles use up the available glucose.
This also means that you will have to check your glucose levels after each session to ensure that the sugar level does not drop too low. An exercise routine may include biking, brisk walking, running, dancing, weight lifting, swimming, etc.
- Eat fewer carbs
Eating more carbs can hamper insulin function and increase blood glucose levels. Counting the number of carbs can have a positive impact on your diabetes. Meal plans and a low-carb diet can go a long way in blood sugar management.
- Eat more fiber
Fiber not only helps with regular bowel movement but also slows down the absorption of carbohydrates. Thus, it slows down the rise of glucose in the blood. Also, the type of fiber you eat is also very important.
Of insoluble and soluble fibers, the latter plays an important role in lowering blood sugar. Including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and legumes can add more fiber to the diet. In a day, at least 25 gm and 38 gm is the recommended fiber intake for women and men, respectively.
- Look for foods low Glycemic Index
Glycemic index is the ranking given to carbohydrate-rich foods on the basis of how much they raise your blood sugar levels. Eating foods with a low glycemic index can help maintain low blood sugar. Examples of such food can be meats, barley, beans, sweet potatoes, yams, corn, seafood, oats, and non-starchy vegetables.
- Control stress levels
Stress can have adverse effects on your blood sugar levels. The stress hormones, such as cortisol and adrenaline, make the blood sugar level spike. You can practice stress management through yoga, mindfulness exercises, and meditation.
- Get Quality Sleep
Getting ample sleep is good not only for your overall health but also for diabetes. Poor sleep can induce stress and a lack of routine can lead to prolonged high blood sugar levels. In fact, studies show that poor sleep leads to an increase in appetite and weight gain.
It may mean more complications, as sleep deprivation can disrupt the function of important metabolic hormones. Thus, a daily routine with 7 to 9 hours of high-quality sleep can help decrease stress levels and maintain optimal hormone levels.
Millions of people around the world are already suffering from diabetes while millions more are considered pre diabetics. It is very important to know how to keep the blood sugar within the recommended range.
Making suitable changes to your lifestyle can help manage diabetes better. Talk to your doctor before adopting any lifestyle changes. If you have type 1 diabetes and are taking medicines and injections, then adjusting them according to the lifestyle changes is something you might want to discuss with your healthcare professional.