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Which Type Of Carbohydrate Creates The Lowest Blood Sugar Level Spike?

Carbohydrates And Diabetes

Carbohydrates And Diabetes

Tweet Carbohydrate is one of the body’s main sources of energy. Carbohydrate is broken down into glucose relatively quickly and therefore has a more pronounced effect on blood sugar levels than either fat or protein. This makes awareness of carbohydrate a particular important factor in management of diabetes. Which foods contain carbohydrate? Carbohydrate is found, to varying degrees in a wide variety of food, notably in starchy foods such as rice, pasta and flour (therefore including pastry, bread and other dough based foods). Sugar is also a form of carbohydrate. Carbohydrate is generally found in all fruits and vegetables, however, the amounts of carbohydrate can vary substantially. Carbohydrate is generally found, at least to some degree, in all fruits and vegetables. Tweet Type 2 diabetes mellitus is a metabolic disorder that results in hyperglycemia (high blood glucose levels) due to the body: Being ineffective at using the insulin it has produced; also known as insulin resistance and/or Being unable to produce enough insulin Type 2 diabetes is characterised by the body being unable to metabolise glucose (a simple sugar). This leads to high levels of blood glucose which over time may damage the organs of the body. From this, it can be understood that for someone with diabetes something that is food for ordinary people can become a sort of metabolic poison. This is why people with diabetes are advised to avoid sources of dietary sugar. The good news is for very many people with type 2 diabetes this is all they have to do to stay well. If you can keep your blood sugar lower by avoiding dietary sugar, likely you will never need long-term medication. Type 2 diabetes was formerly known as non-insulin-dependent or adult-onset diabetes due to its occurrence mainly in p Continue reading >>

Balancing Your Blood Sugar Levels On A Vegan Diet

Balancing Your Blood Sugar Levels On A Vegan Diet

Getting your blood sugar levels correct can easily be managed through a vegan diet. Alessandra Felice shows us how it’s done… Glucose (the sugar in our blood) is essential to health because it’s required for the formation of ATP, the energy molecule in our bodies, which is necessary for every organ and cell to function. The two key hormones for blood glucose regulation are insulin and glucagon. When blood sugar is high, such as after a meal, insulin is released and helps to bring glucose circulating in the blood from the breakdown of food into the tissues for use and storage; when blood sugar is low, glucagon is released to break down glycogen (stored form of glucose in the tissues), causing the blood sugar to rise again. The body tries to maintain a constant balance between the two to function properly. But a state of continued elevated blood sugar can have a very negative effect on it as the body must release a consistent stream of insulin into the bloodstream to maintain healthy sugar levels. This will cause the tissues to become what is known as “insulin resistant”, due to the constant exposure to insulin, which causes more and more insulin to be released to remove circulating sugar that keeps rising as tissues are not responding to insulin anymore. Besides potentially contributing to diabetes, heart disease and other chronic metabolic diseases, long-term blood sugar imbalance may contribute to other conditions like increased fat storage in the abdomen, which is also dangerous for heart health and also cause inconsistent and poor energy. Balancing blood sugar is essential for our mental and physical health! Let’s take a quick look at what items or habits are best to reduce or eliminate to avoid blood sugar spikes. Avoid refined sugar and refined carbohyd Continue reading >>

Pasta: To Eat, Or Not To Eat?

Pasta: To Eat, Or Not To Eat?

One of my favorite foods is pasta. I think I could eat pasta every day and never tire of it. And when I’ve had a rough day, nothing comforts me as much as a plate of pasta with butter (or trans-fat-free margarine), Parmesan cheese, and freshly ground black pepper. Yet pasta is much maligned in the diabetes world. I’ve noticed that people who have diabetes become very passionate when discussing this food. There’s the camp that is indignant at the idea that pasta even exists — it spikes up blood glucose, causes weight gain, and may just be responsible for global warming (OK, that’s an exaggeration). There’s another camp who still eats pasta, but feels horribly guilty for doing so, and will swear with their right hand in the air that, “I really only ate a half a cup” (and 99% of the time, it’s just not the case). I don’t mean to trivialize the subject. Pasta can be tricky to fit into one’s diabetes eating plan. But not because it sends blood glucose levels to the moon. My belief (and you’re welcome to disagree with me) is that most of us struggle with portion control. It’s been engrained in us that pasta is a main dish: that it should be piled high on the plate and smothered in red sauce, with a crusty, buttery slice of garlic bread resting on the side. This is where the problems come in. Here’s what I mean. Take a look at the calories and carbs in the pasta meal that I just mentioned: 3 cups of pasta: 135 grams of carbohydrate, 663 calories 1 cup of sauce: 30 grams of carbohydrate, 185 calories 1 slice of garlic bread: 24 grams of carbohydrate, 170 calories Total: 189 grams of carbohydrate, 1,018 calories If you dine in an Italian restaurant and manage to clean your plate, you’ll consume even more carbohydrate and calories. When you look at p Continue reading >>

Can People With Type 2 Diabetes Eat Honey?

Can People With Type 2 Diabetes Eat Honey?

People with diabetes are often told they should not eat sweets and other foods that contain sugar because they may cause a spike in blood sugar levels. So, could honey be a healthful alternative to sugar-filled sweets and snacks? Blood sugar (glucose) levels are the amounts of sugar found in the blood. Sugar is the body's primary source of energy. Insulin is secreted from the pancreas to maintain blood sugar. The bodies of people with diabetes do not produce enough insulin or use it correctly. Contents of this article: What are carbohydrates? Carbohydrates, which are broken down into sugar provide the body with most of its needed energy. Carbohydrates make up half of recommended daily caloric intake. Carbohydrates are present in most foods, including: fruits vegetables milk grains beans honey white sugar brown sugar candy desserts The amount and type of carbohydrates consumed affect blood sugar levels. To keep their blood sugar at a safe level, people with diabetes should limit their total carbohydrate intake to between 45 grams (g) and 60 g per meal or less. As such, it is important to choose healthful, non-processed, high-fiber carbohydrates and control portion sizes. What is honey? Raw honey starts out as flower nectar. After being collected by bees, nectar naturally breaks down into simple sugars and is stored in honeycombs. The honeycombs trigger the nectar to evaporate, which creates a thick, sweet liquid known as honey. Honey, like other sugars, is a condensed source of carbohydrates. One tablespoon of honey contains at least 17 g of carbohydrates. While this amount may seem small, it adds up pretty quickly depending on how many carbohydrates a person consumes at a meal sitting. While honey is made up of sugar, it also contains vitamins, minerals, and antioxidant Continue reading >>

Eating Vegetables And Proteins Before Carbs May Impact Blood Sugar

Eating Vegetables And Proteins Before Carbs May Impact Blood Sugar

Overweight and obese people with type 2 diabetes may feel better after a meal if they start it off with vegetables or proteins and end with the carbs, suggests a new study of 11 people. Finishing the broccoli and chicken before tucking into bread and fruit juice was tied to a lower rise in blood sugar levels over the next two hours, compared to eating the same foods in the opposite order, researchers report in Diabetes Care. "When we saw the result, we were really encouraged that this is something that could potentially benefit people," said Dr. Louis Aronne, the study's senior author from Weill Cornell Medical College in New York. Approximately 29 million Americans - about 9 percent of the U.S. population - have diabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. About 30 percent of those people are undiagnosed. Type 2 is the most common form of diabetes and is often linked to obesity. In type 2 diabetes, the body's cells are resistant to the hormone insulin, or the body doesn't make enough of it. Insulin helps the body's cells use glucose in the blood for fuel. Drinking whey protein shakes before meals has been linked to lower blood sugar levels after eating, but little was known about the influence of foods, and the order in which they're consumed, on blood sugar levels following a meal, the researchers write. Blood sugar normally rises after eating, but for people with diabetes it can spike dangerously. Diabetics are often told to avoid foods high on the glycemic index - a measure of how rapidly a food gets converted to glucose in the blood - like white breads and sugary drinks. The new research suggests that people may benefit from timing their consumption of carbohydrates during a meal instead of simply avoiding certain foods. The researchers re Continue reading >>

The 3 Worst Foods For Blood Sugar (& 6 Healthy Foods To Eat Instead)

The 3 Worst Foods For Blood Sugar (& 6 Healthy Foods To Eat Instead)

Blood sugar is a relatively common concept for many Americans. But for those who aren’t actively dealing with diabetes, it can be a bit of a murky subject. Discovering more about blood sugar’s role in the body is key to your health, even if you aren’t currently diabetic. What Is Blood Sugar? Blood sugar, or glucose, is sugar carried through the bloodstream to provide energy to the body. Glucose increases when we eat – particularly foods that contain refined carbohydrates, vegetable oils, and sugar. Protein, but not fat, can be converted to glucose when needed, too. (1) Since organs function best with balance, the body tries to maintain stable blood sugar levels. This internal balance is referred to as homeostasis. When we eat carbohydrates, they are broken down into simple sugars during the digestion process. Glucose is the primary simple sugar that fuels the body. (2) Blood sugar levels rise after eating, but then typically return to homeostatic levels within an hour. Blood sugar is at its lowest levels in the morning after fasting during the night. Are you struggling to lose weight, craving foods you shouldn’t, and finding yourself fatigued and unable to focus? Chances are, your Hormones are out of whack. Get our FREE Guide to fixing your Hormones through the Paleo diet here! After glucose is broken down during digestion, it needs to be received into the cells. Insulin is a hormone that allows glucose to enter the cells for energy. Without insulin, the cells would not be able to receive glucose. Insulin releases when glucose is present. When blood sugar levels are high, like with diabetes, insulin can’t always keep up with glucose absorption. In other cases, the pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin to keep up with demands, as is common with type 1, or Continue reading >>

Are All Carbohydrates Created Equal?

Are All Carbohydrates Created Equal?

twitter summary: All carbs are NOT created equal - 30 g of beans is way different from 30 g of glucose tabs; choose lower glycemic index foods for better BGs A diagnosis of diabetes – type 1 or type 2 – hits everyone very differently. However, one common memory for most of us is learning about food and carbohydrate counts. To this day, I still haven’t forgotten that one cup of milk contains 12 grams of carbs, one cup of rice contains 45 grams of carbs, and a steak doesn’t have any carbs. We also pretty quickly learn the physiology basics: a carbohydrate raises blood sugar, and the more carbs you eat, the larger the blood sugar spike (all else being equal). Those of us on insulin estimate the appropriate amount to cover the carbohydrates and bring our blood glucose back down – e.g., if I eat 30 grams of carbs, I should take three units of insulin (for someone with a 1:10 insulin-to-carb ratio). If I eat 60 grams of carbs, I need six units of insulin. Pretty simple. However, that approach embeds what seems like an illogical assumption - namely, that all foods containing carbohydrates are created equal. In other words, if I eat an equal number of carbs of two very different foods – half a cup of black beans (30 grams of carbs) and 7.5 glucose tablets (30 grams of carbs) – I should still take the same three units of insulin. Is that really true? In a few simple experiments using my CGM, I found that this was not at all the case – at least for me. The same 30 grams of carbs of black beans and glucose tablets yielded strikingly different results in blood glucose. I’ve done two head-to-head trials comparing both foods – one without insulin (a baseline) and one with insulin. Below, you will find the results of my trials, along with a short review of the rese Continue reading >>

10 Ways To Balance Blood Sugar Naturally

10 Ways To Balance Blood Sugar Naturally

Blood Sugar Balance in Plain English Before we get started with tips to balance your blood sugar, I want to cover some basic blood sugar terms that I will be using in this discussion. Blood sugar/blood glucose – Glucose is the form of sugar that is in our bloodstream. Glucose is the body’s preferred source of fuel. Insulin – the pancreas secretes insulin, a hormone that shuttles glucose from the blood into body cells. It knocks on the cell and says, “Open up, I’ve got some glucose that I need to get out of the bloodstream so take it and use it for energy.” Insulin resistance – When we consume a large amount of refined carbs with very little fat and protein, our blood sugar spikes very high and the pancreas frantically overcompensates with insulin release. This overcompensation of insulin eventually causes insulin resistance, which leads to Type 2 Diabetes if poor dietary practices are continued. The good news, however, is that it can an be reversed through a healthy diet that balances your blood sugar. Glycogen – Glucose that doesn’t enter body cells is taken to the liver where it is converted to glycogen. This is a form of stored sugar that is broken down to stabilize low blood sugar levels between meals and during the night. It is healthful for the body store of glycogen, but stress and hormone dysfunction deplete our ability to store glycogen and this can contribute to blood sugar imbalance. Hyperglycemia – Hyperglycemia is another term for high blood sugar. It is normal to have a spike in blood sugar after a meal, but chronically high blood sugar causes severe health issues. Hypoglycemia – Hypoglycemia is low blood sugar. Glycogen, the sugar stored in the liver, is responsible for raising blood sugar in-between meals and should prevent hypoglyc Continue reading >>

Carbs – Simple Vs Complex, High Glycemic Vs Low Glycemic, Good Vs Bad

Carbs – Simple Vs Complex, High Glycemic Vs Low Glycemic, Good Vs Bad

Aside from misinformed and/or dumb people spreading myths about your daily carb intake, I think the main reason carbs confuse people so much is because there are so many different ways to describe and categorize them. For example… Good vs bad. Healthy vs unhealthy. Slow vs fast. Simple vs complex. High glycemic vs low glycemic. I guess the potential for confusion is pretty high when you’re trying to keep track of all of these different classifications. So, to help clear up this confusion once and for all, let’s take a quick look at the various different “types” of carbs and find out the real truth behind them. Simple Carbs vs Complex Carbs High carb foods are defined as simple or complex based on their chemical structure. The “simpler” that structure is, the faster your body will digest and absorb that food (think sugar, candy, soda, etc.). The more “complex” that structure is, the slower the digestion and absorption process will be (think vegetables, beans, grains, etc.). And this digestion/absorption rate stuff is important because, the faster this process takes place within your body, the more it spikes your blood insulin levels. For this reason, diets high in simple carbs have been shown to increase our risk of diabetes and heart disease, while diets high in complex carbs have actually been shown to help do the opposite. Simple carbs also tend to be highly processed junk that lacks any nutritional value of any kind, while complex carbs are typically unprocessed, high in fiber, and high in various other important nutrients, vitamins and minerals. And overall health and nutrition aside, simple carbs are also less filling, which means you’ll be hungrier sooner after eating them. Not to mention, that large spike in blood sugar will result in a crash Continue reading >>

Glycemic Index

Glycemic Index

The glycemic index or glycaemic index (GI) (/ɡlaɪˌsiːmɪkˈɪndɛks/)[1] is a number associated with the carbohydrates in a particular type of food that indicates the effect of these carbohydrates on a person's blood glucose (also called blood sugar) level. A value of 100 represents the standard, an equivalent amount of pure glucose.[2] The GI represents the rise in a person's blood sugar level two hours after consumption of the food. The glycemic effects of foods depends on a number of factors, such as the type of carbohydrate, physical entrapment of the carbohydrate molecules within the food, fat and protein content of the food and organic acids or their salts in the meal. The GI is useful for understanding how the body breaks down carbohydrates[3] and takes into account only the available carbohydrate (total carbohydrate minus fiber) in a food. Glycemic index does not predict an individual's glycemic response to a food, but can be used as a tool to assess the insulin response burden of a food, averaged across a studied population. Individual responses vary greatly.[4] The glycemic index is usually applied in the context of the quantity of the food and the amount of carbohydrate in the food that is actually consumed. A related measure, the glycemic load (GL),[5] factors this in by multiplying the glycemic index of the food in question by the carbohydrate content of the actual serving. Watermelon has a high glycemic index, but a low glycemic load for the quantity typically consumed.[6] Fructose, by contrast, has a low glycemic index, but can have a high glycemic load if a large quantity is consumed. GI tables are available that list many types of foods and their GIs. Some tables also include the serving size and the glycemic load of the food per serving.[3] Graph d Continue reading >>

What To Eat To Stabilise Your Blood Sugar Levels

What To Eat To Stabilise Your Blood Sugar Levels

If you’re on a mission to strip processed sugars and carbs from your life – or just to reduce your risk of diabetes and stablise your blood sugar levels – here’s the good news: you don’t have to be limited to a lack-lustre diet of expensive “health” products that might taste more like cardboard than food. While sugar and carbohydrates have been controversial topics over the past few years, acccording to the experts, there’s plenty of ways to inject colour, texture, flavor and creativity into a low-GI diet as you stabilise your blood sugar levels. What will work for you can depend on your cultural background, your diabetes risk and what you like to eat. Dieticians warn against anyone totally eliminating carbohydrates from their diet for weight loss or blood sugar control. That’s because our blood sugar (glucose) – sourced mostly from foods containing starches and sugars – provides us with a gradual, continuous supply of energy, which keeps us going from one meal to the next. “It’s important not to cut this food group from your diet as carbohydrates are our main energy filler and provide lots of essential vitamins and minerals,” says Accredited Practising Dietitian and spokesperson for the Dietitians Association of Australia, Charlene Grosse. Grosse explains that minimally processed, nutrient-dense low-GI foods work to lower your blood sugar levels and avoid spikes while other foods containing added sugars (such as junk food and sugar-sweetened soft drinks) can heighten glucose levels, and should be limited or avoided altogether. Consultant dietitian and nutritionist and University of Sydney lecturer, Dr Alan Barclay, recommends a diet featuring basmati or Doongara rice and soluble fibre-rich foods like beans, lentils and chickpeas to control b Continue reading >>

10 Foods That Lower Blood Sugars In Diabetics

10 Foods That Lower Blood Sugars In Diabetics

While a low carb diet appears to be useful on the whole, there are also many foods shown to help. Either by lowering blood sugars and/or improving insulin sensitivity. This articles looks at 10 of the best foods and supplements for lowering blood sugars, based on current research. Just know they should never be used in place of your diabetes medication, but rather alongside. 1. Resistant Starch Lowers Sugars After Meals Starches are long chains of glucose (sugar) found in oats, grains, bananas, potatoes and various other foods. Some varieties pass through digestion unchanged and are not absorbed as sugar into the blood. These are known as resistant starch. Many studies show resistant starch can greatly improve insulin sensitivity. That is, how well the body can move sugar out of the blood and into cells for energy. This is why it’s so useful for lowering blood sugar levels after meals (1, 2). The effect is so great that having resistant starch at lunch will reduce blood sugar spikes at dinner, known as the “second meal effect” (3). Problem is many foods high in resistant starch, such as potatoes, are also high in digestible carbs that can spike blood sugar. Therefore resistant starch in supplement form – without the extra carbs – is recommended. Summary: Supplemental resistant starch is a fantastic option for those struggling to control sugars or have hit a plateau. 2. Ceylon Cinnamon Several cinnamon compounds appear to prevent the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, minimising blood sugar spikes. It may also dramatically improve insulin sensitivity (4, 5). In a recent clinical trial, 25 poorly-controlled type 2 diabetics received either 1 gram per day of cinnamon or placebo (dummy supplement) for 12 weeks. Fasting blood sugar levels in the cinnamon gro Continue reading >>

Understanding Our Bodies: Insulin

Understanding Our Bodies: Insulin

Almost everyone has heard of Insulin. You probably know that people with type 1 diabetes need to inject themselves with insulin to survive, and must constantly monitor the amount of sugar they eat. But what do you really know about insulin? What is its purpose in the body, and why do we need it? How does it relate to our diets? What happens when things go wrong with it? And why should anyone who doesn’t have diabetes give a hoot? Insulin is one of the most important hormones in the human body, and yet most people don’t really understand why our bodies make it or how what we eat affects the levels of insulin we produce. More so than any other hormone, our diet is key in regulating insulin levels, and thus a number of biological processes. As you’ll soon see, everyone should think about how what they eat impacts their body’s insulin release to be at their happiest and healthiest. Why We Need Insulin Every living thing requires energy to survive. In cells, energy is stored and shuttled around using a molecule called Adenosine Tri-Phosphate, or ATP. Whenever the cell then has an energy-requiring reaction, enzymes can use the energy stored in ATP’s phosphate bonds to fuel it. Cells rely on ATP to survive, and to create ATP, they rely on glucose. All cells, from bacteria and fungi to us, take glucose and use it to generate ATP by a process called Oxidative Phosphorylation. First, glucose is converted to an intermediate molecule called pyruvate via a process called glycolosis. As long as there is oxygen around, this pyruvate is further converted to Acetyl CoA, which enters a cycle of reactions called the Citric Acid Cycle. This takes the carbon to carbon bonds and uses them to create high energy electrons, which are then passed down a chain of enzymes which use the e Continue reading >>

How Does Eating Affect Your Blood Sugar?

How Does Eating Affect Your Blood Sugar?

Part 1 of 8 What is blood sugar? Blood sugar, also known as blood glucose, comes from the food you eat. Your body creates blood sugar by digesting some food into a sugar that circulates in your bloodstream. Blood sugar is used for energy. The sugar that isn’t needed to fuel your body right away gets stored in cells for later use. Too much sugar in your blood can be harmful. Type 2 diabetes is a disease that is characterized by having higher levels of blood sugar than what is considered within normal limits. Unmanaged diabetes can lead to problems with your heart, kidneys, eyes, and blood vessels. The more you know about how eating affects blood sugar, the better you can protect yourself against diabetes. If you already have diabetes, it’s important to know how eating affects blood sugar. Part 2 of 8 Your body breaks down everything you eat and absorbs the food in its different parts. These parts include: carbohydrates proteins fats vitamins and other nutrients The carbohydrates you consume turn into blood sugar. The more carbohydrates you eat, the higher the levels of sugar you will have released as you digest and absorb your food. Carbohydrates in liquid form consumed by themselves are absorbed more quickly than those in solid food. So having a soda will cause a faster rise in your blood sugar levels than eating a slice of pizza. Fiber is one component of carbohydrates that isn’t converted into sugar. This is because it can’t be digested. Fiber is important for health, though. Protein, fat, water, vitamins, and minerals don’t contain carbohydrates. These components won’t affect your blood sugar levels. If you have diabetes, your carbohydrate intake is the most important part of your diet to consider when it comes to managing your blood sugar levels. Part 3 Continue reading >>

Eat Proteins Before Carbohydrates To Avoid Blood Sugar (glucose) Level Spikes In Type 2 Diabetes

Eat Proteins Before Carbohydrates To Avoid Blood Sugar (glucose) Level Spikes In Type 2 Diabetes

Home » Diabetes » Eat proteins before carbohydrates to avoid blood sugar (glucose) level spikes in type 2 diabetes Protein and carbohydrates play an important role in influencing blood sugar levels and type 2 diabetes. Having control over diabetes is an important part of maintaining your health. Roughly 29-million Americans have diabetes. Specifically, the prevalence of diabetes in seniors remains high, with those over 65 years of age representing 25.9% of that statistic. We are aware of ways to prevent diabetes and even manage it with exercise, diet and other healthy living practices. Yet, the numbers remain high. As the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S., further steps need to be taken to better prevent diabetes. One tip focuses on sugar intake. Sugar intake should be kept to a minimum and diabetics should make healthy foods choices while avoiding processed food. But there are new findings that suggest eating in a certain order can help stop blood-sugar spikes after a meal. These spike are a common problem for diabetics. Protein before carbohydrates for better blood sugar levels in type 2 diabetics The new method of eating was published in Diabetic Care. Eleven obese patients with type 2 diabetes, who also took medication to control their glucose levels, were told to eat a set meal in different orders. The meal consisted of ciabatta bread, orange juice, chicken breast, lettuce and tomato salad with a low-fat dressing, and steamed broccoli with butter. Glucose levels were measured in the early morning, with 12 hours after their last meal as a control. Following that they were measured 30, 60 and 120 minutes after eating to see how the order of food affected their glucose levels. The participants were told to consume the carbohydrates first (ciabatta bread and Continue reading >>

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