What To Eat On A Low Blood Sugar Diet
A low blood sugar diet doesnt differ much from other healthy diets, like the Mediterranean, DASH, or plant-based diets. It focuses on filling your plate with fiber-rich foods, protein, and healthy fats.
Fiber, protein, and fat digest more slowly than simple carbohydrates, or sugars, and don’t cause blood sugar to spike. Ideally, meals should include a source of fiber, protein, and healthy fat for the best blood sugar control.
Foods to Eat
- Leafy greens – spinach, kale, lettuce
- Non-starchy vegetables – celery, cucumber, bell peppers, zucchini
- Whole grains – brown rice, rolled oats, quinoa, sprouted bread
- High protein foods
- Fish & shellfish – salmon, tuna, shrimp, crab, oysters
- Plain yogurt and cottage cheese
- Cooking oils – extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, ghee
Foods to Limit or Avoid
- White bread, rice, and pasta
- Pancakes, waffles, and muffins made with refined flours
- Refined snacks – pretzels, crackers, chips
- Table sugar, honey, maple syrup
- Baked goods – cookies, cake, pie, donuts, pastries, cornbread
- Dried fruit – dates, apricots, raisins
- Condiments with added sugar – salad dressings, bbq sauce, ketchup
- Fried foods – french fries, fried chicken, buffalo wings
When you need a quick snack fix, the same guidelines apply. Try reaching for snacks that are a good source of protein for better blood sugar. Some ideas:
- Plain cottage cheese or yogurt
Some More Insights About Low Blood Sugar
Be aware that a hypo can also occur when you are sleeping: you might wake up with some of the symptoms mentioned above, such as confusion, sweating, or fatigue. Do you want to get more insights about this, then take a look at our article about diabetes and sleep.
Once you have become skilled in learning to recognize the early warning signs that you experience personally, you are able to prevent a hypoglycemic attack with a rapid treatment yourself. In this way you can avoid having to get a treatment from a medical professional and have the power to control your diabetes.
We understand that this however, can be difficult at times. Keeping a close eye on your blood glucose levels and planning ahead can be tiring and take up quite a lot of time. Therefore, Hedia can help remind you to keep track of your different readings, such as active insulin on board, blood sugar level and more. Try our diabetes tracker and let go of some of the work and thoughts.
When you do have a low blood sugar level, or if Hedia can see that you have too much insulin on board Hedia will recommend carb intake to keep your blood sugar level in range. Try it yourself for free at the App Store or !
What Foods Can Diabetics Eat Freely
Diet is the cornerstone when it comes to managing blood sugars, which is why its important to know what foods diabetics can eat freely and which ones they cannot. By having a diabetic friendly food list on hand, you will not only understand what constitutes a diabetic diet but it will also help you stay on track.
The best way to use this this list is while grocery shopping or you can pin it to the fridge as a reminder when you go to eat. Additionally, this list of foods can also be used for those who are prediabetic.
Now that we know the basics here is:
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Diabetes: 10 Foods And Drinks To Help Manage Blood Sugar
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Diabetes friendly food options are as close as your kitchen.
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5 MIN. READ
When you have prediabetes or diabetes, a healthy diabetes meal plan is key to managing your blood sugar. Sometimes it can be tricky to know which foods and drinks are good choices, but these 10 picks can help keep your numbers in check.
Whether they’re lentils, kidney, pinto, black or garbanzo, beans are a low-glycemic index food. That means their carbohydrates are gradually released so they’re less likely to cause blood sugar spikes. They’re so beneficial that one study found that eating a daily cup of beans for three months as part of a low-glycemic index diet lowered HbA1c by half a percentage point.
Try it! Swap in beans for half the meat in tacos or your favorite chili recipe.
You might think that there’s no room in a diabetic meal plan for fruit, but apples are also low glycemic. Aiming for foods like apples that are low or medium on the glycemic index is one way to manage blood sugar levels. And eating an apple a day has its benefits they are high in fiber, vitamin C as well as fat-free! Not to mention a portable and easy snack option.
Try it! Toss an apple in your lunch bag or grab one between meals. Bake them and add cinnamon for warm treat.
Try it! For healthy snacking on-the-go, pack one-ounce portions of almonds into single-serve containers.
5. Chia Seeds
6. Glucerna® Shakes and Bars
What Causes Low Blood Sugar
There are different causes of hypoglycemia, such as:
Too much insulin: Injecting insulin lowers blood sugar more quickly than any other diabetes medication. The risk of low blood sugar is highest with short- and rapid-acting insulins. Fast-acting insulin is usually taken around meals because eating raises blood sugar, so it works quickly to counteract the rise in blood sugar. Taking short- and rapid-acting insulins without eating may result in a hypo.
Long-acting or basal insulin works the slowest out of all of the types of insulin. It is usually injected once or twice a day. Long-acting insulin mimics the bodys natural ability to constantly release a small amount of insulin throughout the day and night.
Intermediate-acting insulin works more slowly than fast-acting but is faster than basal insulin. They are often injected twice per day.
Insulin doses can overlap, which increases the risk of hypoglycemia. For example, taking a morning dose of intermediate-acting insulin as well as a dose of rapid-acting insulin before lunch can cause a stacking up of insulin levels in the body and increase the risk of a hypo.
- Gastroparesis. Gastroparesis is the slowing of stomach emptying, which can occur as a complication of diabetes. When food isnt emptied from the stomach very quickly, it isnt available to be digested and converted into sugar in the bloodstream. Hypoglycemia risk increases in people with gastroparesis who also take insulin.
Read Also: Oral Insulin Pills For Type 1 Diabetes
Diabetes And Dementia Life Expectancy
Diabetes and dementia are both complex conditions, meaning that various factors can affect someones life expectancy. For example, someone with diabetes who does not manage their glucose levels properly or care for themselves will likely have a shorter life expectancy than someone with well-managed diabetes.
People with diabetes and dementia often have other chronic conditions that can further complicate their health.
Having both conditions appears to shorten life expectancy. A 2019 study linked diabetes with a higher dementia and mortality risk. During the 12-year follow-up of 8,328 participants, the researchers associated diabetes with an increased risk of dementia and a lower dementia-free life expectancy. Dementia-free life expectancy for a 70-year-old with diabetes was 13.4 years for females and 16.1 years for males. Among those without the condition, the results were 16.5 years and 19.6 years for females and males, respectively.
People living with diabetes and dementia require special care and management. Therefore, working with a doctor to develop a comprehensive treatment plan is important.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to managing diabetes and dementia . However, caregivers must understand the impact of dementia on a persons understanding of their diabetes. The individual may not undertake self-care tasks, such as managing their medication and monitoring their blood glucose levels.
Treating An Episode Of Hypoglycaemia
The immediate treatment for hypoglycaemia is to have some sugary food or drink to end the attack.
For example, this could be:
- a glass of fruit juice or non-diet soft drink
- between three and five dextrose tablets
- a handful of sweets
At first you should avoid fatty foods and drinks, such as chocolate and milk, because they donât usually contain as much sugar and the sugar they do contain may be absorbed more slowly.
After having something sugary, you should have a longer-acting carbohydrate food, such as a few biscuits, a cereal bar, a piece of fruit or a sandwich.
It will usually take around 15 minutes to recover from a mild episode of hypoglycaemia. If you have a blood glucose meter, measure your blood sugar again after 15 to 20 minutes. If itâs still too low , you should have some more sugary food or a drink before testing your levels again in another 15 to 20 minutes.
When treating someone else with hypoglycaemia, if the above treatment isnât effective, you may be able to help them by applying glucose gel to the inside of their cheeks, and gently massaging the outside of their cheeks.
It may take 10 to 15 minutes before they feel better. This shouldnât be done if the person is drowsy or unconscious because of the risk of choking.
Also Check: Can Type 2 Diabetes Be Cured Naturally
Diabetes Dos And Donts
Diabetes dos will always be whole foods. What does that mean? It means you should be eating foods like:
Cottage Cheese + Peaches
“Cottage cheese, especially low-fat versions, are a great source of protein that, when paired with fruit like a peach, can help increase fiber intake and stabilize blood sugars,” Hembree says.6254a4d1642c605c54bf1cab17d50f1e
Additionally, despite being known for their sweetness, peaches are considered a low-glycemic fruit, scoring a 42 on the glycemic index the system that ranks how carbohydrate-containing foods raise blood sugar levels. Foods that have a rating of 55 or lower are considered low-glycemic.
Packed with potassium, vitamin A, and C, this summertime staple fruit also has a slew of health benefits, including supporting heart health, , and improving digestion.
While they are on the sweeter side, carrots are a low-carb, non-starchy vegetable, which means they don’t have a significant impact on blood sugar levels.
Aside from offering a source of protein, chickpeasthe star ingredient in hummuscontain healthy fats. These fats help slow down the absorption of carbs, allowing sugar to be released into the bloodstream at a steadier rate.
“Using as a dip for a vegetable with good fiber content, like carrots, will help keep blood sugars level,” Hembree says.
In fact, a study published in Nutrition Journal found that white bread released four times more sugar into the blood than hummus diddespite the fact that both foods contain the same amount of carbs.
Not sure which hummus to get? Here are The Best and Worst Hummus BrandsRanked!.
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Benefits And Drawbacks Of A Low Blood Sugar Diet
Other health benefits of a blood sugar lowering diet include:
- Help you feel fuller for longer
- Reduces food and sugar cravings
- Supports weight loss
- May reduce cholesterol and triglycerides
- Lowered inflammation
- Reduce the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes
There arent too many risks associated with a low blood sugar diet. One potential drawback is unnecessarily eliminating healthy foods, like some fruits, if youre using the glycemic index to plan meals and snacks.
Cottage Cheese With Tomatoes
Top 1/2 cup of cottage cheese with a whole sliced tomato for a healthy dose of protein, fat, and calcium. Since its so low in carbs and hydrating, it will not raise blood sugar levels, she says. Whats more, tomatoes contain lycopene, a disease-fighting phytonutrient that gives red tomatoes their vibrant red pigment.
Whisps Parmesan & Cheddar Cheese Snacks
Whisps Parmesan & Cheddar Cheese Snacks
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What You Can Do
Most of the sugar or glucose in your blood comes from carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are the sugars and starches in grains, beans, vegetables, fruit, milk and milk products, honey, and sugar. If you dont have diabetes and youre feeling the unpleasant effects of a drop in blood sugar, eat or drink something with carbohydrates. Good choices are a piece of fruit, a few whole wheat crackers, a glass of milk, or a carton of yogurt.
In people with diabetes, hypoglycemia can come on suddenly and needs to be treated right away so it doesnt get worse. Eat or drink a quickly digested carbohydrate food, such as:
½ cup fruit juice
½ cup of a regular soft drink
5 or 6 hard candies
4 or 5 saltine crackers
2 tablespoons of raisins
3 to 4 teaspoons of sugar or honey
3 or 4 glucose tablets or a serving of glucose gel
Each of these choices provides about 15 grams of carbohydrate. Wait for 15 or 20 minutes, then check your blood sugar with a blood glucose meter. If your blood sugar is still low, have another portion of carbohydrates.
Add Legumes To Your Meals
Beans, lentils, and peas make a high-fiber, high-protein addition to your diet. Legumes are also a very low-glycemic food, helping to prevent blood sugar and insulin spikes.
They have been shown to decrease blood pressure and lower LDL cholesterol levels. And, In one small 2014 study, participants with Type 2 diabetes who replaced red meat for legumes in their diets for eight weeks had decreased blood glucose, insulin, and LDL cholesterol compared to those not on a legume-based diet.
Working legumes into your diet, especially if you’re adhering to a Mediterranean diet, can also help bolster your cardiovascular health, provide antioxidants, and is associated with a lower risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
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Things That Can Help To Balance Your Blood Sugar
- Daily Exercise: Regular exercise can help increase insulin sensitivity and help your muscles use glucose effectively. This is great for those trying to lose weight, as this way you can guide the carbs and sugar toward providing energy for your workouts instead of letting that sugar float around your bloodstream.
- Low carb/High fat diet: Im not suggesting everyone hop on the Keto train. Keto is definitely not for everyone! I tried it in the past and found I was still eating too many calories. I have found a healthy medium by simply minimizing my carbs and eating a bit more satiating fat. Those are things like avocado or extra virgin olive oil. Carbs break down into sugars . If your body cant store this sugar for energy, your blood sugar levels tend to rise. Studies* show that a low carb diet helps reduce blood sugar levels and prevent blood sugar spikes. That is why it is commonly prescribed to those who are already diabetic.
Lastly, if you can, monitor your blood sugar levels. I know this is not possible for everyone. Unless you have health coverage like I do, this can be extremely pricey.
Diabetes Sugar Levels Too Low
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Best Foods For Low Blood Sugar
For patients with diabetes, monitoring blood sugar levels is a part of daily life.
Low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, can occur for many people with diabetes who are on certain medications, including insulin and sulfonylureas. It can occur for a variety of reasons including skipping a meal, exercising strenuously, taking too much insulin or consuming alcohol, especially on an empty stomach.
Low blood sugar can be as minor as a slight inconvenience or as serious as a life-threatening emergency. Thats why it is important to boost blood sugar before it becomes problematic.
Angela Norton, a diabetes educator at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center, has diabetes herself, so she knows firsthand the tips and tricks of keeping blood sugar on track. Although blood glucose is considered normal if above 70 mg/dL, Norton says patients with diabetes should not wait until they reach below that threshold to take action.
Treat when you feel the symptoms, even if your blood sugar is not below 70, because as long as it is less than 100, it may be dropping fast, she says.
When it comes to treatment, Norton shares these five foods to help boost low blood sugar.
1. CandyWhen hypoglycemia occurs, patients should follow the 15-15 rule. Consume 15 grams of carbohydrates to raise blood glucose and check your levels again after 15 minutes. When the numbers return to normal, eat a snack to stay on track.
Gummy candies contain carbohydrates, which have a large impact on blood sugar levels.