What Are Blood Sugar Targets
A blood sugar target is the range you try to reach as much as possible. These are typical targets:
- Before a meal: 80 to 130 mg/dL.
- Two hours after the start of a meal: Less than 180 mg/dL.
Your blood sugar targets may be different depending on your age, any additional health problems you have, and other factors. Be sure to talk to your health care team about which targets are best for you.
Treating Low Blood Sugar
You are at risk of having a low blood sugar reaction if you:
- Skip or delay a meal or snack
- Take too much insulin or eat too few carbohydrates
- Drink alcohol, especially without eating carbohydrates
Check your blood sugar if you have any of these symptoms:
- Weakness and/or fatigue
If your blood sugar is less than 70 milligrams per deciliter :
- Eat 15 to 30 grams of carbohydrate
- Wait 15 minutes and then recheck your blood sugar
- If your blood sugar is still less than 100 mg/dl, take another 15 grams of carbohydrate and retest your blood sugar in another 15 minutes. Repeat if necessary.
Important: If you have frequent low blood sugars speak to your doctor. You may need changes in your medication and/or meal plan.
Normal Blood Sugar Values
The closer your blood sugar stays in the normal range throughout the day, the easier it is for your immune system to do its job. Heres what to aim for:
- If you have prediabetes, try to keep your fasting sugar below 100 mg/dL, and your A1c below 5.7%. Those numbers are considered normal no diabetes.
- If you have diabetes, the American Diabetes Association recommends working to keep your fasting or premeal blood sugar under 130 mg/dL, and your A1c under 7.0%.
- If you check your glucose during the day, youll see that it goes up after you eat. Thats called a postprandial glucose. Ideally, it shouldnt go over 140 mg/dL 2 hours after you eat. Thats still considered normal.
Luckily, there are a few natural ways to improve your blood sugar and support your immune system at the same time. And hey, anything that kills two birds with one stone is good in my book!
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Eat More Fruit And Veg
We know eating fruit and veg is good for you. Its always a good thing aim to eat more at meal times and have them as snacks if youre hungry. This can help you get the vitamins, minerals and fibre your body needs every day to help keep you healthy.
You might be wondering about fruit and if you should avoid it because its sugary? The answer is no. Whole fruit is good for everyone and if you have diabetes, its no different. Fruits do contain sugar, but its natural sugar. This is different to the added sugar that are in things like chocolate, biscuits and cakes.
Products like fruit juices also count as added sugar, so go for whole fruit instead. This can be fresh, frozen, dried or tinned . And its best to eat it throughout the day instead of one bigger portion in one go.
How To Lower Your Too High Glucose Levels
High blood sugar, also known as hyperglycemia, is closely linked to diabetes and should never be left untreated. “Keeping your blood glucose levels in the recommended ranges throughout the day will help you avoid long-term complications of diabetes, such as eye damage, heart attack , kidney damage, nerve damage, stroke, problems with healing wounds By maintaining your blood glucose levelsand avoiding hyperglycemiayou can reduce your risk of all these complications,” says Amy Hess-Fischl, MS, RD, LDN, BC-ADM, CDCES. Here are five expert-backed methods of lowering your blood sugar. Read onand to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure Signs You’ve Already Had COVID.
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Manage Your Carb Intake
Your carb intake strongly influences your blood sugar levels .
Your body breaks carbs down into sugars, mainly glucose. Then, insulin helps your body use and store it for energy.
When you eat too many carbs or have insulin-function problems, this process fails, and blood glucose levels can rise.
Thats why the American Diabetes Association recommends that people with diabetes manage their carb intake by counting carbs and being aware of how many they need .
Some studies find that this can help you plan your meals appropriately, further improving blood sugar management (
Foods that are high in fiber include:
- whole grains
The recommended daily intake of fiber is about 25 grams for women and 35 grams for men. Thats about 14 grams for every 1,000 calories .
Eating plenty of fiber can aid blood sugar management. Soluble dietary fiber appears to be more effective than insoluble fiber for this purpose.
Eat More Protein And Fat
Lean sources of protein like eggs, egg whites, chicken breast, turkey breast, extra-lean ground beef, bison, etc. are all filling food options that have no sugar. These lean options will not cause a spike in blood sugar, and they provide high satiety so you wont snack on sugary options later in the day.
If you elect to have these high-protein options in a sandwich form, pick a whole-grain bun, because it wont elicit the same metabolic response that white bread will, keeping blood sugar levels from spiking too high. Including some dietary fat with your meal or as a snack can also improve insulin response. Instead of reaching for a sugary snack or plate of fries as a side, opt for nuts and fruit or a salad with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Ramp Up Your Movement Each Day
Exercise helps improve blood glucose in people with type 2 diabetes by increasing insulin sensitivity and the bodys ability to use glucose as energy, according to the American Diabetes Association. In type 2, exercise helps improve insulin resistance, says James G. Beckerman, MD, a cardiologist in Portland, Oregon. The end result is lower blood sugars.
Crandall Snyder tells patients that exercise is like spring cleaning for the body. It takes the stored form of glucose and uses it for energy so the next time you eat carbohydrates there’s a place to put it, she says.
Because exercise can immediately reduce blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes, work with your healthcare team to determine the right amount of activity and timing for you. A study published in September 2017 in Frontiers in Endocrinology found exercising 30 minutes after the start of a meal is usually best for maintaining blood sugar controls.
Learn more about managing your blood sugar in Diabetes Daily’s article “HbA1C: Everything You Need to Know.”
Control How Much Sugar You Eat
While this one may seem obvious to some, donât scroll past just yet. How closely do you read ingredient labels? You likely buy and eat some processed foods unless you make all foods including sauces, dressings, and condiments, from scratch.
Thatâs OK youâre a modern-day human and convenience and cost matter. But, most packaged or pre-made foods contain added sugar or artificial sweeteners. Select carefully and, as an example, buy big tubs of steel-cut oats or quick-cooking oats over the flavored, sugary oatmeal in a box or cup.
Dr. Robert Lustig, a pediatric endocrinologist, professor, and specialist in childhood obesity, believes that sugar is so toxic to health that he recommends federal regulation against marketing sugar-laden products to children and even adding taxes to processed foods that contain added sugar.
These ideas may seem radical but are similar to rules that govern marketing alcohol to minors, and similar to the extra taxes consumers pay to purchase alcohol and tobacco products. Just as booze and cigarettes can be addictive for some, sugar can hook you and make you want more .
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Strategies Proven To Lower Blood Sugar
If youre consistently struggling with high blood glucose, either as a result of insulin resistance like in prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, or due to insufficient insulin production from type 1 diabetes or type 1.5 diabetes, there are some consistent, evidence-based strategies you can implement to help.
How To Treat Someone Who’s Having A Seizure Or Fit
Follow these steps if someone has a seizure or fit caused by a low blood sugar level:
Tell your diabetes care team if you ever have a severe hypo that caused you to have a seizure or fit.
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What Is Diabetic Ketoacidosis
If you think you may have low blood sugar, check it even if you dont have symptoms.
When too many ketones are produced too fast, they can build up in your body and cause diabetic ketoacidosis, or DKA. DKA is very serious and can cause a coma or even death. Common symptoms of DKA include:
- Fast, deep breathing.
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Stomach pain.
If you think you may have DKA, test your urine for ketones. Follow the test kit directions, checking the color of the test strip against the color chart in the kit to see your ketone level. If your ketones are high, . DKA requires treatment in a hospital.
DKA happens most in people with type 1 diabetes and is sometimes the first sign of type 1 in people who havent yet been diagnosed. People with type 2 diabetes can also develop DKA, but its less common.
Foods That Lower Blood Sugar
Managing blood sugar levels with better food choices can sometimes seem more like an art than a science, and for good reason: everyones bodies are different, and we all react to food in different ways.
One thing is for certain, however: certain foods are inflammatory and promote high blood sugars, while other foods are anti-inflammatory and help the body regulate blood sugar levels better .
Eating anti-inflammatory foods that help regular blood sugar levels is helpful for people who dont have diabetes, too!
This article will examine the top 10 foods that help lower and regulate your blood sugar levels better.
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How To Reduce Your Blood Sugar Level Naturally
Its possible to reduce your blood sugar level naturally without medication. However, you will need to make one or more significant lifestyle changes that promote better overall health and decrease insulin resistance or increase insulin sensitivity. Follow the below steps to lower your blood sugar naturally.
Dr. Raja gives her five tips that can help reduce your blood sugar, The first thing is to eat a low carb diet, low in starchy foods, highly processed foods or concentrated sugars. Second is to regularly exercise, a minimum of 30 minutes five days a week. The third way is to incorporate some form of strength conditioning, simple body weight exercises that help build muscle, since muscle decreases insulin sensitivity. The fourth way is intermittent fasting and the fifth is weight loss, even a few pounds. All these should help patients lower their insulin resistance, and lower their blood sugar naturally.
Agave Syrup And Nectar
Produced in South America and Mexico from agave plants, agave nectar is sweeter than honey, though less viscous, whilst agave syrup is thicker and darker. Agave nectars are typically sold in light, amber, dark, and raw varieties. The light nectar is mild in flavour and is therefore ideal for delicate dishes or beverages, whereas the amber and dark varieties have a stronger, caramel taste, making them lovely as a honey or sugar substitute on pancakes, in desserts, for use in baking and even in sauces with poultry, meat and seafood dishes.
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Foods Minerals & Spices That May Help Control Blood Sugar
When it comes to managing blood sugar, the types of foods and drinks you consume plus what you sprinkle on top to add zest and a pop of color can help to stabilize your glucose.
Higher doses of spices are available in pill form. Check with your doctor before taking any supplements, and for advice on specific dosage recommendations.
Here are some foods, spices, and minerals that may help you control blood sugar:
Diabetes And Your Immune System
When your blood sugar is higher than it should be, that defense system starts to break down. One effect is increased inflammation throughout your body and especially in your blood vessels, which can lead to cardiovascular disease.
A weakened immune system also means you have an increased risk of contracting common infections like colds, flu, skin infections or pneumonia, and more serious ones like bone, joint, or heart infections. In fact, a study published in the journal Diabetes Care, found that people with diabetes are twice as likely to be hospitalized or die from a serious infection compared to those without diabetes. Thats an important reason to manage your blood sugar.
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Healthy Eating For Blood Sugar Control
If you have diabetes, a healthy eating plan for you is not that different from a healthy eating plan for people without diabetes. The American Diabetes Association echoes the dietary guidelines recommended for the general public that is, a diet centered on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes , and low-fat dairy products.
However, you’ll want to pay special attention to your carbohydrate intake.
Vegetables, fruits, and whole grains provide more nutrition per calorie than refined carbohydrates and tend to be rich in fiber. Your body digests high-fiber foods more slowly which means a more moderate rise in blood sugar.
For most people with diabetes, carbohydrates should account for about 45% to 55% of the total calories you eat each day. Choose your carbohydrates wisely ideally, from vegetables, whole grains, and fruits. Avoid highly refined carbohydrates such as white bread, pasta, and rice, as well as candy, sugary soft drinks, and sweets. Refined carbohydrates tend to cause sharp spikes in blood sugar, and can boost blood triglyceride levels.
Make Sure You Are Taking Your Medications As Prescribed
If you are diabetic, it is important to take your insulin or other diabetes medications as prescribed.
Missing doses or not taking enough of your medication can cause your blood sugar levels to rise.
Be sure to talk to your doctor about how much of your medication you are to take and when to take it.
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Ways To Lower Your Blood Sugar Without Medications
Type 2 diabetes has become a global epidemic. But did you know that its not just preventable but also reversible? If you have Diabetes Type 2, we have for you a bunch of helpful tips on how to bring down blood sugar.
While some of us are genetically at a risk of diabetes Type 2, it is largely a lifestyle disorder today. By changing your lifestyle, you can learn how to lower blood sugar levels naturally without the need for medication. Most diabetes medications are nothing more than a temporary-fix. They dont address the underlying reason behind high blood sugar, which is driven by the environment. Diet and lifestyle changes can reverse diabetes, unlike medications which only treat the symptoms.
The key: Make a positive change to the way you eat, sleep, stay active, and manage stress. So, lets learn how to bring down blood sugar through 15 easy, natural ways.
How To Lower Blood Sugar Naturally
Blood sugar, also known as glucose, is the main sugar in your blood and your bodys main source of energy. Blood sugars vary all day. A normal fasting blood sugar is less than 100 mg/dl. Blood sugars anytime of day regardless of when or what the last meal was should always be under 200 mg/dl. Blood sugars exceeding these two levels could signal prediabetes or Type 1 diabetes or Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes is a condition where the body cannot produce enough insulin or use insulin properly to correct blood sugars to safe levels.
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Tips For Healthy Eating With Diabetes
There are different types of diabetes, and no two people with diabetes are the same. So there isnt a one-size-fits-all ‘diabetes diet’ for everyone with diabetes. But weve come up with tips that you can use to help you make healthier food choices.
These healthy eating tips are general and can help you manage your blood glucose , blood pressure and cholesterol levels. They can also help you manage your weight and reduce the risk of diabetes complications, such as heart problems and strokes, and other health conditions including certain types of cancers.
Making healthier food choices is important to manage your diabetes and to reduce your risk of diabetes complications. We know that not everyone agrees on what is the best diet.
This is why weve reviewed all the evidence to put these tips together. Weve focused on specific foods, to make it easier for you to put these tips into practice and to complement whatever diet you decide to follow.
– Douglas Twenefour, Specialist Dietitian and Deputy Head of Care
We’ve based our tips on research involving people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. If you have a different type of diabetes, like gestational, cystic fibrosis-related diabetes or MODY, some of these tips are relevant to you. Its important, whatever kind of diabetes you have, to see your dietitian for specific advice.