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November 2022

5 Ways to Balance Blood Sugar

With the incidence of diabetes and pre-diabetes rates on the rise, balancing blood sugar becomes even more important.  Healthy eating and an active lifestyle not only support good health, they also play a role in balancing blood sugar levels. 

Begin with a Balanced Plate
When it comes to what’s on your plate, it is not only the type of food but the portion and balance to keep blood sugar in check. Build a balanced plate by:

  • Filling half your plate with non-starchy vegetables including: broccoli, tomatoes, green beans, spinach, asparagus and salad greens.
  • One-quarter lean protein, focus on fish and poultry.
  • One-quarter healthy carbs; a whole grain such as bulgur or quinoa, legumes or a small potato.
  • Garnish with a healthy fat such as avocado or olive oil.

Pair Carbs with Lean Protein and/or a Healthy Fats
Always have lean protein and/or a healthy fat with fruits, grains and starchy vegetables. This can help slow down the digestion of carbs, minimizing spikes in blood sugar.

As a snack try Greek yogurt with berries or an apple with string cheese.

Be Carb Conscious—Know Your Carbs
Carbs are the preferred fuel for the body as they offer a variety of nutrients and play an important part of a balanced diet.  However, they have the biggest impact on blood sugar and need to be chosen wisely. Not all carbs are created equal.

  • Focus on whole minimally processed nutrient dense carbs. They are rich in fiber, vitamins & minerals and no added sugar. The fiber in these carbs slows down absorption of blood sugar.
  • Minimize refined and highly processed carbs including sweets, chips, juices, sweetened beverages and desserts. The carbs in these foods will be absorbed quickly due to minimal fiber content and will raise blood sugar. Check the Nutrition Facts label on packaged foods for added sugar, keeping it as low as possible.
  • Space carbs throughout the day to prevent highs and lows in blood sugar.

Eat at Regular Intervals
Try to have meals/snacks approximately 3-5 hours apart.  Avoid going for long periods without eating, as this may result in low blood sugar. This can lead to cravings for carbs, especially sweets, spiking blood sugar. Get ahead of hunger and maintain blood sugar by having balanced meals & snacks at regular intervals.

Be Physically Active
Physical activity can improve blood sugar and help insulin to work better. Regular activity also aids in achieving or maintaining a healthy body weight.

  • Pick an activity, start slowly and build on it.
  • Try different activities to keep your interest and for maximum benefits.
  • Aim for 30 minutes a day, most days of the week.  This can be split up, it does not need to be all at one time.

Check with your physician before beginning any exercise program.


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