What Foods Can I Eat To Lower My Blood Sugar?

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20 Foods That Lower Blood Pressure

From long hours at the office to those little annoyances like traffic jams and the fact that The Chainsmokers won a Grammy, day-to-day life provides us a seemingly endless supply of little stresses. While those itty-bitty amounts of stress may seem like no big deal at first, over time, they can send your blood pressure skyrocketing, taking your health along for the ride. According to the CDC, a whopping 75 million Americans—that’s nearly 1/3 of the adult population—are struggling with high blood pressure, increasing their risk of heart attack, stroke, and other life-altering health consequences along the way. Skipping the salt and squeezing in some regular workouts can help keep your blood pressure from reaching dangerous levels, but it takes a more proactive approach to keep your blood pressure under control in the long run. While the words “blood pressure-lowering diet” may conjure images of unseasoned egg whites and limp steamed veggies, getting your blood pressure into a healthy range is more than just doable —it can be downright delicious. Start by adding the Eat This, Not That! approved list of blood pressure-lowering foods into your regular routine and watch your Continue reading >>

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  1. Maddy

    Including as many foods and supplements into the diet which will help with insulin sensitivity must be a good thing for PCOSers.
    Insulin Sensitising Foods
    The types of dietary fiber that appear to be most significant with
    respect to insulin resistance include oat fiber and guar gum
    A recent study confirms earlier research that a high fibre diet can
    effectively help control blood sugar. US researchers studied the
    effect of diet containing differing amounts of fibre in 13 patients
    with adult onset diabetes. For the first six weeks, the study
    participants were put on a diet with only a moderate amount of
    fibre - 24g daily of which 8g was soluble and 16g insoluble fibre -
    the diet recommended by the American Diabetes Association
    For the following six weeks the patients were then put onto a high
    fibre diet - 50g daily with 25g soluble fibre and 25g insoluble. The
    researchers then compared the effects of the diets on glycaemic
    control and blood fat concentrations.
    The results revealed that the high fibre diet lowered blood sugar
    levels by 8.9 per cent more than the ADA’s diet and 24 hour
    plasma insulin levels by further 12 per cent. The high fibre diet
    also lowered bloodlevels of harmful LDL cholesterol levels without
    affecting the more beneficial HDL cholesterol levels.
    Total cholesterol levels were 6.7 per cent lower on a high fibre diet
    and gastrointestinal absorption of cholesterol was 10 per cent
    lower. The researchers stated that the improvements were
    attributable to the high level of soluble fibre in the diet.
    Many nutrition authorities estimate that 20-35 grams of fiber daily
    is a desirable intake for the average individual. Note that the
    amount of nutrients can vary in wheat products since the refining
    of grains remove part of the seed (e.g., bran, endosperm, and
    Here are some fiber-rich sources:
    1 ounce dry-roasted peanuts: 2.2 g
    1/2 cup cooked broccoli: 2.2 g
    1 potato with skin: 2.5 g
    1 slice whole wheat bread: 2.8 g
    1 cup carrots: 3.0 g
    1/2 large grapefruit: 3.1 g
    1 apple: 3.5 g
    1 cup cooked long-grain brown rice: 3.3 g
    1 cup cooked instant oatmeal: 3.5 g
    3 cups air-popped popcorn: 3.7 g
    1 pear: 4.3 g
    1/2 cup raisins: 4.5 g
    1 cup of whole wheat spaghetti cooked: 5 g
    1 cup baked beans: 7.0 g
    1/2 cup of chickpeas: 7 g
    1 cup boiled lentils: 7.9 g
    1 serving bran cereal: 11 g
    Here are different sources of fiber and their uses in the body:
    CELLULOSE: Fruit legumes, nuts, oat bran, seeds, whole grains,
    and vegetables. Adds bulk to stool to reduce constipation; oat
    bran lowers cholesterol; may help control blood sugar; helps
    weight loss by displacing kcalories.
    GUMS: Algae, barley, fruits, legumes, oats, seaweed, seeds, and
    vegetables. Adds bulk to stool to reduce constipation; may lower
    blood cholesterol; helps control blood sugar; helps weight loss by
    displacing kcalories.
    HEMICELLULOSE: Fruits, legumes, nuts, oat bran, seeds, whole
    grains, and vegetables. Adds bulk to stool to reduce constipation;
    oat bran lowers cholesterol; may help control blood sugar; helps
    weight loss by displacing kcalories.
    LIGNINS: Woody parts of bran, fruit skins, nuts, seeds, whole
    grains and vegetables. Adds bulk to stool to reduce constipation;
    may lower blood cholesterol; may help control blood sugar; helps
    weight loss by displacing kcalories.
    MUCILAGES: Plant seeds and secretions. Adds bulk to stool to
    reduce constipation; may lower blood cholesterol; helps control
    blood sugar; helps weight loss by displacing kcalories.
    PECTINS: Algae, barley, fruits, legumes, oats, seaweed, seeds,
    and vegetables. Adds bulk to stool to reduce constipation; may
    lower blood cholesterol; helps control blood sugar; helps weight
    loss by displacing kcalories.
    Evidence shows that a diet rich in fish oils and monounsatured fats
    are of particular benefit for insulin resistance. There is one study
    of 12 overweight men and women who had insulin resistance.
    They were given DHA (a component of fish oil) for 12 weeks. 70%
    of the participants showed a decrease in insulin resistance
    There is also evidence that the amount and range of carotenoidlike
    pigments in an individual’s blood is inversely related to fasting
    serum insulin levels, suggesting a diet low in vegetables might
    contribute to insulin resistance
    Studies indicate that 2 tablespoons of vinegar before a meal perhaps, as part of a vinaigrette salad dressing will dramatically reduce the spike in blood concentrations of insulin and glucose that come after a meal.
    The active chemical in Cinnamon is MHCP or methylhydroxychalcone polymer. This has been shown to lower blood glucose levels. ¼ to 1 teaspoon per day is recommended
    Whey Protein Powder
    Wheys effects on bodyfat, insulin sensitivity, and fat burning.
    Although higher protein diets have been found to improve insulin sensitivity, and may be superior for weight loss , its unclear if all proteins have the same effects.
    One study compared whey to beef (Damien P. Belobrajdic,,Graeme H. McIntosh, and Julie A. Owens. A High-Whey-Protein Diet Reduces Body Weight Gain and Alters Insulin Sensitivity Relative to Red Meat in Wistar Rats. J. Nutr. 134:1454-1458, June 2004) and found whey reduced body weight and tissue lipid levels and increased insulin sensitivity compared to red meat.
    Rats were fed a high-fat diet for nine weeks, then switched to a diet containing either whey or beef for an additional six weeks. As has generally been found in other studies, the move to a high dietary protein reduced energy intake (due to the known satiating effects of protein compared to carbs or fat), as well as reductions in visceral and subcutaneous bodyfat.
    However, the rats getting the whey, there was a 40% reduction in
    plasma insulin concentrations and increased insulin sensitivity
    compared to the red meat.
    Not surprisingly, the researchers concluded these findings support the conclusions that a highprotein diet reduces energy intake and adiposity and that whey protein is more effective than red meat in reducing body
    weight gain and increasing insulin sensitivity.
    Other studies suggest taking whey before a workout is superior for preserving/gaining lean body mass (LBM) and maintaining fat burning (beta oxidation) during exercise over other foods taken prior to a workout.
    Studies are also being conducted on the ability of blueberries to control type II diabetes. Type II diabetes causes a decrease in sensitivity to insulin, making it difficult for the body to properly use the insulin it produces. Preliminary data suggests that blueberries may increase sensitivity to insulin.
    Sugar Free Red Bull – or Taurine Supplements
    There have been a lot of anecdotes that sugar free red bull has helped people to lose weight.... why would this be? It contains quite a hefty allowance of B-Vitamins which helps with energy but also 500mg of taurine per can. Taurine is an insulin sensitiser. If you can tolerate artificial sweeteners (I can) then adding a sugar free red bull daily or even twice daily may help you with your weight loss efforts
    Taurine and weight loss
    For years L-carnitine has been promoted as a beneficial weight
    loss supplement. While anecdotal evidence and research support the efficacy of L-carnitine for this purpose, the focus on L-carnitine has caused some to overlook Taurine as a supplement for weight loss.
    Japanese researchers conducted a study on thirty healthy collegeage
    students, using double-blind randomization to assign the students to a control or placebo group. Prior to the study researchers measured TC, HDL-C and plasma glucose levels in all subjects. Both groups had similar readings.
    Subjects in the control group were then administered 3g of taurine
    per day for a period of seven weeks.
    Significant changes in triacylglycerol and total cholesterol levels were noted in the control group, as well as significant losses of fat body mass.
    This suggests that taurine administration has a marked effect on lipid metabolism, and can therefore be beneficial to persons looking to lose body fat.
    Contain potential anti-cancer agent ellagic acid. Are rich in vitamin C.
    Are a source of soluble fibers and may lower high blood
    cholesterol levels and slow release of carbohydrates into the blood
    stream of diabetics.
    is a potent insulin sensitizing fatty acid with strong anticarcinogenic and cardiovascular health promoting properties. One of the "pillars" of the Mediterranean Diet is, the high consumption of whole milk cheese from range/grass-fed animals. the CLA in the cheese that hallmarked that culture played a crucial role in the supreme cardiovascular health evident in the
    subjects studied.
    Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) Supplements May Speed Weight Loss
    A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study, published in the December 2000 issue of the Journal of Nutrition found that CLA reduces fat and preserves muscle tissue. According to the research project manager, an average reduction of six pounds of body fat was found in the group that took CLA, compared to a placebo group. The study found that approximately 3.4 grams of CLA per day is the level needed to obtain the beneficial effects of
    CLA on body fat.
    Dr. Michael Pariza, who conducted research on CLA with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, reported in August 2000 to the American Chemical Society that "It doesn’t make a big fat cell get little. What it rather does is keep a little fat cell from getting big."
    Pariza’s research did not find weight loss in his group of 71 overweight people, but what he did find was that when the dieters stopped dieting, and gained back weight, those taking CLA "were more likely to gain muscle and not fat.’’ In a separate study conducted at Purdue University in Indiana, CLA was found to improve insulin levels in about two-thirds of diabetic patients, and moderately reduced the blood glucose level and triglyceride levels.
    Increases metabolic rate -- This would obviously be a positive
    benefit for thyroid patients, as hypothyroidism -- even when
    treated -- can reduce the metabolic rate in some people.
    Decreases abdominal fat -- Adrenal imbalances and hormonal
    shifts that are common in thyroid patients frequently cause rapid
    accumulation of abdominal fat, so this benefit could be quite
    Enhances muscle growth -- Muscle burns fat, which also
    contributes to increased metabolism, which is useful in weight loss
    and management.
    Lowers cholesterol and triglycerides -- Since many thyroid patients
    have elevated cholesterol and triglyceride levels, even with
    treatment, this benefit can have an impact on a thyroid patient’s
    Lowers insulin resistance -- Insulin resistance is a risk for some
    hypothyroid patients, and lowering it can also help prevent adultonset
    diabetes and make it easier to control weight.
    Reduces food-induced allergic reactions -- Since food allergies can
    be at play when weight loss becomes difficult, this can be of help
    to thyroid patients.
    Enhances immune system -- Since most cases of thyroid disease
    are autoimmune in nature, enhancing the immune system’s ability
    to function properly is a positive benefit.
    CLA is a supplement, and does not require a prescription. It is
    available at health food stores, and at online outlets. Experts recommend that you use a patented name brand, as some brands have inconsistent or insufficient amounts of CLA contained in them.
    The brand used in testing was "Tonalin" brand CLA, which comes
    in 1000 mg capsules. To obtain the level determined to be effective in the testing -- 3.4 g, or 3400 mg, per day -- you would need to take 4 of these capsules a day, with meals.
    Dr. Cefalu reported on an animal study, in which he found that chromium picolinate supplements given to obese rats resulted in a 50% improvement in insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance, compared to controls.
    200 micrograms of chromium as chromium picolinate per day, may not be enough to see an effect on insulin sensitivity. The ideal amount would be 1,000 micrograms per day.
    If you give chromium to people with high blood glucose, then blood glucose will go down. If you give it to people with low blood sugar, both insulin and blood glucose improve.
    N-Acetyl Cysteine Improves Insulin Resistance in Women with
    Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
    Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and associated
    elevations of insulin levels may benefit from taking supplemental
    N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), according to a study in Fertility and
    Sterility (2002;77:1128–35).
    In this preliminary study, 31 women with PCOS were given 1.8 to
    3 grams per day of NAC for five to six weeks. Blood measurements
    for glucose and insulin were taken before and after a glucose
    tolerance test, both at the start of the study and at the end of the
    treatment period. No dietary modifications were made during the
    Initial measurements showed that 14 of the 31 women had normal
    insulin levels, while the remaining 17 had abnormally high levels of
    Women with high initial insulin levels who took NAC had a
    significant reduction in insulin levels following the glucose
    tolerance test and also showed improved insulin sensitivity. On the
    other hand, those with initially normal insulin levels had no
    improvement in any measurement.
    This suggests the benefit of NAC in women with PCOS may be restricted to only those women who already have high insulin levels to begin with.
    NAC is an amino acid that has commonly been used as a treatment to break up mucus in the lungs. It is also a precursor to glutathione, a powerful antioxidant in the body, which has been shown in other studies to improve insulin sensitivity.
    Some physicians recommend taking NAC on an empty stomach, so
    it does not compete with other amino acids in food for absorption.
    People taking single amino acids should also make sure they eat
    adequate amounts of protein, to prevent upsetting the balance of
    amino acids in the body. In addition, some doctors recommend
    that long-term supplementation of NAC (more than a few weeks)
    be accompanied by 15 mg of zinc per day, because preliminary
    evidence suggests that NAC might deplete these minerals.
    A lack of calcium has often been attributed to PCOS. In fact, future research suggests that calcium may soon form part of a treatment for PCOSers.
    Calcium is involved in egg production in the ovaries. Calcium is also important to weight loss.
    Calcium may become a dieter’s best friend
    The Tennessee team used mice that model human patterns of
    obesity. The animals had been genetically engineered to express in
    their fat cells a gene called agouti, which normally operates in
    human but not mouse fat cells. This gene strongly influences
    whether a fat cell burns energy-containing molecules or converts
    them to fat.
    Michael B. Zemel, who directs the university’s Nutrition Institute,
    and his colleagues put these mice onto a low-calorie diet for 6
    weeks. Their meals contained just 70 percent as much energy as
    the rodents would normally choose to eat. One group received a
    diet that was also deficient in calcium. Its calcium content,
    adjusting for species differences, is "almost exactly what American
    women are consuming," Zemel notes, "about 500 milligrams per
    day." That’s well below the recommended daily allowance of 1,300
    mg calcium.
    The calorie-restricted mice lost 8 percent of their body fat and 11
    percent of their weight.
    Zemel’s group again restricted the food but boosted calcium intake
    of another two groups of the mice. Each received the mouse
    equivalent of a human dose of 1,600 mg calcium per day. Mice
    getting this as a carbonate supplement lost 42 percent of their
    body fat and 19 percent of their weight. Those that consumed the
    extra calcium as nonfat dry milk—substituted for an equal amount
    of dietary protein—lost 60 percent of their body fat and 25 percent
    of their weight.
    A fourth group, receiving twice as much dairy-derived calcium,
    showed little extra benefit, Zemel notes.
    These differences occurred even though all of the low-calorie
    groups got the same exercise and mix of dietary fat, protein, and
    carbohydrates. The results show that varying dietary calcium alters
    the animals’ metabolism, says Zemel. Among the dieting animals,
    core body temperature a measure of basal energy use fell
    during the low-calcium diet but climbed with the high-calcium
    Under low-calcium conditions, the Tennessee scientists find, the
    agouti gene directs calcium channels to open. "That turns out to
    be a bad thing," Zemel says, because it activates fat synthesis
    while suppressing fat breakdown.
    Zemel’s group is now testing whether a 6-month augmentation of
    dietary calcium will offer similar weight-loss benefits to obese
    When endocrinologist Robert P. Heaney of Creighton University in
    Omaha, Neb., first learned of preliminary data by Zemel’s group
    last year, "I thought they made sense but I still had a degree of
    skepticism," he says. So, he reanalyzed data from five calciumsupplement
    trials he had conducted in people over the years.
    "And in all five," he says, "we found a significant weight effect that
    we had ignored." These data, to be published soon, show that
    women consuming the least calcium weighed the most.
    Ironically, Zemel says, among weight-conscious teens, "the first
    thing they jettison from their diet is dairy." This choice, he
    suspects, is "moving them farther from their goal, not closer."
    Vitamin D
    Over the past 30 years, numerous studies have established a role
    for calcium in egg maturation and normal follicular development.
    PCOS is characterized by hyperandrogenic chronic anovulation
    (lack of ovulation) due to excess androgens (masculinizing
    hormones), ovarian theca cell overgrowth, and arrested follicular
    Vitamin D plays a crucial role in calcium absorption and regulation.
    A study conducted at Columbia University investigated whether
    vitamin D and calcium dysregulation contribute to the
    development of follicular arrest in women with PCOS, resulting in
    reproductive and menstrual dysfunction.
    They studied 13 women who had chronic anovulation,
    hyperandrogenism and vitamin D insufficiency. Nine had abnormal
    pelvic sonograms with multiple ovarian follicular cysts. All were
    hirsute, two had hair loss, and five had acanthosis nigricans.
    Vitamin D combined with calcium supplementation resulted in
    normalized menstrual cycles within 2 months for seven women.
    Two became pregnant and the others maintained normal
    menstrual cycles.
    These data suggest that abnormalities in calcium
    balance may be responsible, in part, for the arrested follicular
    development in women with PCOS and may contribute to the
    pathogenesis of PCOS.
    Two other recent studies have shown that vitamin D deficiency
    may be a contributing factor to insulin resistance and diabetes,
    both of which are problems for women with PCOS. These and
    other studies suggest that vitamin D plays a role in the secretion,
    and possibly the action, of insulin. People with diabetes tend to
    have lower vitamin D levels
    Magnesium May Help PCOS
    Women with PCOS are known to have a high incidence of insulin
    resistance and glucose intolerance, and tend to be at eventual
    high risk for hypertension, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
    Optimal intake of magnesium has been shown to be helpful for all
    of these health problems. In addition, magnesium is needed for
    more than 300 biochemical reactions in your body. So you can
    imagine how important it is.
    Magnesium is found in green vegetables, nuts, seeds and some
    grains. Although it is present in many foods, it usually occurs in
    small amounts. As with most nutrients, daily needs for magnesium
    cannot be met from a single food.
    Eating a wide variety of foods, including at least 3-5 servings of vegetables daily, helps to ensure an adequate intake of magnesium. If you find yourself relying on processed foods, you may need to take supplemental magnesium
    To assist with insulin sensitivity the following could be included in
    the diet:
    • Magnesium
    • 1,000iu Vitamin D
    • 1,600mg calcium per day by a mixture of supplements and
    full fat dairy products
    • 2g NAC per day plus Zinc
    • 1,000mcg Chromium GTF per day
    • 500mg taurine
    • 1,000mg tonalin
    • 50g fibre per day
    • 100-120g protein per day

  2. christyz

    Great stuff Maddy, thanks! I enjoyed this.
    One note for PCOS'ers on metformin though:
    Metformin patients should avoid Guar Gum since studies show it may decrease the absorption and/or activity of met in the body.

  3. cysterof2miracles

    Great info!

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