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How certain foods affect your blood sugar

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According to Everyday Health, there is an article written by Elizabeth Shimer Bowers explaining how certain foods affect blood sugar. She outlines which foods contribute to high blood sugar and which ones can be included in the diet of a diabetic.

For those who are not diabetics, the body is able to regulate blood glucose levels effectively by producing more or less insulin, a hormone that helps to effectively control blood sugar. However, in diabetic patients the body does not produce enough insulin, and high blood sugar must be controlled. One way for diabetics to do this is to pay attention to the foods they eat.

According to the article, many carbohydrates have a high glycemic index. They quickly cause a spike in one's blood sugar. Foods high in protein and fat and carbohydrates such as bread also cause blood sugar to rise but less significantly. These foods have a low glycemic index.

The following information will help keep your blood sugar in control.

Create the right plate. Ann Williams, PhD, RN, a certified diabetes educator and a research associate professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio suggests using half of your plate for non-starchy, low-calorie vegetables, a quarter of your plate with protein, and a quarter of your plate with whole-grain carbohydrates. For example, dinner could be a small piece of grilled fish or chicken for protein, a hearty serving of steamed broccoli and carrots, and a small helping of brown rice for carbohydrates.

Skip starchy vegetables. Eat non-starchy vegetables such as broccoli, green peppers, and mushrooms that are high in nutrients and lower in carbohydrates. Try to avoid starchier vegetables like potatoes, corn, and peas.

Eat fiber-rich carbohydrates. Choose carbohydrates made from whole grains that will go into the blood stream more slowly than white rice or white flour.

Eat large particles of food. Small pieces of food will be absorbed and converted into blood glucose faster than foods with a larger particle size. To control blood sugar, eat cracked wheat cereal that has a larger particle size. Eat potatoes prepared in chunks instead of mashed potatoes.

Do not over cook food. Foods cooked more thoroughly go into the body faster than foods cooked less thoroughly. Therefore, to control blood sugar you can eat pasta and even potatoes cooked firm rather than overcooked and mushy. Certain foods, like poultry and pork, should always be well cooked.

Eat at regular intervals. For most people with diabetes, it’s a good idea to eat approximately every four hours to control blood sugar. Some diabetics find it necessary to eat every two hours to control their blood sugar.

Don’t deprive yourself. If you are craving a certain food that raises blood sugar, you don't have to deprive yourself. Simply have a small serving instead of waiting and then giving in to the craving later and overeating that particular food.

If you follow the above suggestions, you are sure to see a difference in your blood sugar.

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