Strategies for Incorporating Glucose Management intoYour Lifestyle
As the brain’s primary energy source, it’s not surprising that blood sugar plays a critical role in many of your body’s essential functions. For example, glucose drives your body’s ability to metabolize food and produce hormones. If you’ve skipped a meal, becoming “hangry” (hungry and angry), you’re familiar with the impact of glucose levels on your mood. Maintaining glucose awareness can add additional insight to your health, regardless of your lifestyle.
We understand the importance of maintaining a stable glucose level. The next question is, “How do we manage it daily?” Like most things in life, consistency is the key. We’ve compiled some strategies to help you adopt habits that support your glucose stabilization. With the new year around the corner, there is no better time to start making these habits part of your normal routine.
- Establish your baseline glucose level. Use your annual wellness check as an opportunity to test your fasting glucose and Hemoglobin A1C levels. A fasting glucose test will provide a snapshot, while the A1C will provide an average of your glucose levels over the past three months. Both assessments will provide insight into whether there are potential issues with your body’s ability to produce or respond to insulin.
- Monitor your body’s response to different foods. Use a glucose monitoring technique (a CGM or a finger prick test) to monitor your body’s reaction after eating certain foods. Note how you feel within a few hours of eating different types of food. A drastic spike or dip in glucose levels can cause irritability, difficulty concentrating, and fluctuations in mood.
- Pair protein with fiber-rich carbohydrates. Eating high fiber carbohydrates found in raw, uncooked fruits and vegetables with protein help dampen the body’s response to glucose. The inclusion of protein helps slow digestion, delays the absorption of carbohydrates into the bloodstream, and prevents a spike in blood glucose.
- Eat carbohydrates after exercising. After working out, your body has an increased carbohydrate tolerance. It’s ready to use the body’s stored glucose. This makes it a great time to enjoy those high-quality, carbohydrate-rich foods.\
- Pay attention to your meal timing. Instead of a few large meals, eating small meals throughout the day helps manage your body’s ongoing response to glucose. Aim to eat dinner three hours before bedtime at night, and if possible, opt for a low-carbohydrate, high-protein meal. This approach helps minimize glucose level fluctuations throughout the night and enhance your sleep quality.
- Take a walk after eating. If you occasionally indulge in heavy meals during the holidays, take a walk afterward. Walking helps your body dispose of excess glucose and return to its baseline blood sugar level more quickly. Even a quick 20-30 minute walk can be beneficial.
- Keep reading our newsletter. We will update you on changes in glucose monitoring technology. Wearable CGMs are just one of many options for those who want to track their glucose levels continuously. For people with Diabetes, the t: slim X2 phone app is the first FDA-approved smartphone app to program insulin delivery. Similarly, the Omnipod 5 Automated Insulin Delivery System is approved to integrate the Dexcom G6 CGM with smartphones to adjust insulin levels automatically.