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How to Avoid Blood Sugar Highs and Lows if You Have Type 2 Diabetes?
One of the primary concerns of those with type 2 diabetes is maintaining stable blood sugar levels. Long-term effects of high blood sugar include nerve damage, cardiovascular disease, and impaired eyesight. More acute symptoms, such as dizziness, disorientation, and even loss of consciousness, may occur at even trace concentrations.
The key to avoiding problems and enjoying a good quality of life with type 2 diabetes is maintaining blood sugar levels as near the feasible goal.
Swings in Blood Sugar
Your food and the liver might contribute to your blood glucose levels. The main function of blood sugar is to fuel the body's cells. She cites the brain as an example, noting that this highly prized organ relies only on glucose.
Energy cells take up glucose through insulin. People with type 2 diabetes either don't create enough insulin or cannot properly use the insulin they make. When insulin is lacking, glucose in the bloodstream increases, producing hyperglycemia. Eating a meal heavy in carbohydrates, not taking enough insulin or another diabetic medicine, or being under a lot of mental or physical stress may all cause your blood sugar to spike.
Too much insulin or other diabetic medicine, skipping meals, eating fewer carbs than usual, or increasing physical activity may all lead to dangerously low blood sugar levels.
If you have type 2 diabetes, monitoring your blood sugar levels to prevent dangerous swings is crucial.
And you may begin by studying the symptoms of hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia, as well as the measures you can take to restore normal blood sugar levels −
Hypoglycemia − Symptoms of low blood sugar include disorientation, sweating, anxiousness, nausea, and dizziness, and often occur when blood sugar levels drop below 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl). You may faint.
Hyperglycemia − High blood sugar manifests through several symptoms, including an inability to concentrate, frequent bathroom trips, and extreme weariness and thirst. There are two potential causes of high blood sugar. Insidiously, over time, high blood sugar destroys the tiny blood vessels in the eyes, kidneys, and nerves, which may cause blindness, renal failure, and other catastrophic consequences. Short-term effects include decreased appetite and increased urination. Coma or death is another possible outcome. Suppose your blood sugar is above 240 mg/dL. In that case, you need emergency treatment because you might develop ketoacidosis (high amounts of blood acids called ketones) if your body cannot process sugar quickly enough.
Tips for People with Type 2 Diabetes to Control Their Blood Sugar
1. Avoid Skipping Meals At Any Cost
Always eat what you normally would. You don't have to consume everything at once if you're concerned about maintaining your calorie consumption. Instead, it suggests dividing your meals into smaller portions throughout the day. Breakfast should be the first meal of the day if you're spacing out your meals.
Want to know why it's so crucial to have a diverse diet? Simply put, more food intake during a single or double meal time leads to more extreme swings in blood sugar. Maintaining steady blood sugar levels may be accomplished by eating healthily three times a day with two nourishing snacks in between.
If you want to control your sugar levels or avoid developing diabetes, developing healthy eating habits is an important first step.
Fat is used for fuel when you have a metabolic imbalance, which may exacerbate other health problems, including renal stress, exhaustion, low blood pressure, nausea, and constipation. For this reason, start eating more evenly spaced meals to accomplish two goals at once.
2. Watch Your Carbohydrate Consumption
The amount of carbohydrates you eat greatly impacts your blood sugar. When digested, carbohydrates are metabolized into simple sugars, mostly glucose. The hormone insulin then facilitates its use and storage in the body for later use.
If you consume excessive carbohydrates or your insulin does not work properly, your blood sugar levels may increase.
According to the results of several research, this may aid in meal planning and thus improve control of blood sugar levels. In several studies, eating a low-carbohydrate diet has been shown to lower blood sugar and avoid glucose spikes.
If you're watching your blood sugar levels, you can still consume some carbohydrates. Whole grains are more nutritional and may help lower blood sugar levels than processed grains and refined carbohydrates.
Insulin sensitivity is improved with exercise, which may aid in glucose management. Do moderate activity for at least 30 minutes on at least five days of the week. When is it reasonable to expect modest effort? You should be able to carry on a conversation yet not become winded or have to yell.
Therefore, it's recommended that you include both cardio and strength training in your weekly routine. In addition to your weekly aerobic activity of 150 minutes, experts advise you to do strength training at least twice weekly.
Since physical activity has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels, it is always important to be prepared to address hypoglycemia by having a supply of fast-acting carbohydrates. Always ensure your blood sugar is within a healthy level before and after exercise.
4. Eat Plenty Of Whole Grains
Foods rich in fibre and beta-glucan include oat bran, rye, and barley. This dietary fibre helps keep food in the stomach for a longer period, which reduces the likelihood of rapid increases in blood sugar after eating.
Try to bear in mind that despite their apparent lack of fat or protein, many meals nevertheless contain carbs. Compared to processed meals, whole grains take a little longer to prepare. Because of this, they don't cause a spike in blood sugar as processed meals do.
5. Hydrate Yourself
Water intake has been linked to maintaining normal blood sugar levels. In addition to keeping you from passing out from lack of fluids, this also aids your kidneys in excreting any extra sugar. According to a meta-analysis of observational research, high blood sugar is more likely among those who don't drink enough water.
6. Eat Nuts
Almonds, pistachios, and walnuts are all examples of nuts that contain beneficial fats that reduce the rate at which the body absorbs sugar. A word of caution: even good fats have calories, so watch how many nuts you consume at once. Six almonds or three-quarters of an ounce of pecans provide the same calories as a teaspoon of butter. To this end, think about how you may include nuts in your diet in a manner that will benefit you and not cause any negative side effects.
Easy dietary modifications like following a low-carb, high-fibre diet and avoiding added sweets and processed grains may help you control your blood sugar levels. Apart from aiding in blood sugar regulation, frequent exercise, keeping a healthy weight, and drinking lots of water might have other positive effects on your health.
But, before making any dietary changes, you should consult with your doctor, especially if you have a preexisting medical condition or are on any drugs. The risk of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes may be greatly reduced by adopting the above diet and lifestyle habits.
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