When you eat starchy/sweet foods or alcohol they are broken down in the body into a sugar called glucose. This is carried around in the bloodstream and taken to cells which use it for energy.
For proper functioning, the ideal amount of glucose to have in the blood is about 2 teaspoons, at any given time.
The level of glucose in the blood is carefully controlled by a hormone called insulin. After we eat, the amount of glucose in the blood rises. Insulin is released to allow glucose into our cells for energy. However, if blood sugar rises too rapidly, the body can end up releasing too much insulin. This causes the blood sugar to swing low again, affecting our mood and bringing on the ‘hangry’ effect. This is sometimes referred to as the “blood sugar rollercoaster” [I] [ii] [iii].
Prolonged, repeated intake of high Glycaemia Index (GI) foods. These are starchy, sweet foods which release their glucose into the bloodstream quickly, causing excess production of insulin. This excess load triggers bodily systems to convert surplus glucose into fat.
If this happens too frequently, the body starts to ignore the insulin message, a condition called insulin resistance. This can lead to permanently high blood sugar levels and more and more insulin being released, further increasing weight gain, a process which can eventually result in type 2 diabetes and a greater risk of heart disease [v] .
Timing of Meals - When you eat is as important as what you eat. To balance blood sugar levels, eat three well-balanced main meals a day.
GI Ratings - Carbohydrates with a GI over 70 are usually considered to be High GI and are best avoided. Those with a rating under 50-55 are considered Low GI and should make up about a ¼ of your plate. Those in between can be eaten occasionally in place of low GI foods[iv].
Hidden Sugars in Drinks - Avoid all fizzy drinks, squashes and fruit drinks as they contain high levels of sugar.
Protein - Protein slows glucose release from carbohydrates so try to include some with each meal. The best protein choices are: organic chicken or turkey, fish, eggs, live natural yogurt, raw activated nuts and seeds, quinoa, beans and lentils, organic tofu & tempeh, goat’s cheese and cottage cheese. Red meat can be consumed in moderation [v].
Stimulants - Coffee, tea, energy drinks and alcohol disrupt blood sugar levels and are best avoided or at least reduced.
Sun Warrior Warrior Blend Protein Berry - Organic, plant based protein
Pure Encapsulations Inositol Powder - has been studied for its potential benefits in managing blood sugar levels by improving insulin sensitivity and helping to regulate glucose metabolism[vi].
Pure Encapsulations Resveratrol - Some research suggests that resveratrol may help improve insulin sensitivity, enhance glucose uptake by cells, and reduce blood sugar levels [vii].
Pure Encapsulations Metabolic Xtra - Metabolic Xtra is a powerful combination of chromium, green coffee bean extract, alpha lipoic acid and resveratrol.
Viridian Nac+ - NAC has been studied for various health benefits, including its potential effects on blood sugar regulation [viii].
Viridian Chromium & Cinnamon Complex - Some research suggests that chromium supplementation may improve insulin sensitivity and help regulate blood sugar levels, whilst cinnamon is a spice that has also been studied for its potential effects on blood sugar regulation [ix] [x].
Health Factory Nano Magnesium Sensitive - Supplementing with magnesium may help improve insulin sensitivity and promote stable blood sugar levels [xi].
Enzymedica Berberine - Berberine is a compound derived from various plants and has been studied for its potential effects on blood sugar regulation [xii].
Healthy Cooked Breakfast - Traditional cooked breakfasts are low GI. Grill organic bacon rashers and serve with low sugar beans, grilled tomatoes & mushrooms for a meal that will sustain your energy through to the afternoon. Limit this breakfast to just twice a week
Soaked Muesli - Soak overnight in a little water to produce a soft & digestible breakfast. Make sure your muesli is sugar and wheat free. Serve with natural live, organic yogurt and a spoon of blackberries/blueberries/raspberries a grated apple or other low GI fruit and a scoop of whey protein to ensure adequate protein
Sardines on Toast - Top a thin slice of rye or pumpernickel bread with a small tin of sardines or mackerel in tomato sauce. Alternatively serve the fish with some oatcakes
[I] Basturk B, Koc Ozerson Z, Yuksel A. Evaluation of the Effect of Macronutrients Combination on Blood Sugar Levels in Healthy Individuals. Iran J Public Health. 2021 Feb;50(2):280-287.
[ii] Mathew TK, Zubair M, Tadi P. Blood Glucose Monitoring. [Updated 2023 Apr 23]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-.
[iii] Sami W, Ansari T, Butt NS, Hamid MRA. Effect of diet on type 2 diabetes mellitus: A review. Int J Health Sci (Qassim). 2017 Apr-Jun;11(2):65-71.
[iv] Witek K, Wydra K, Filip M. A High-Sugar Diet Consumption, Metabolism and Health Impacts with a Focus on the Development of Substance Use Disorder: A Narrative Review. Nutrients. 2022 Jul 18;14(14):2940.
[v] Franz MJ. Protein: metabolism and effect on blood glucose levels. Diabetes Educ. 1997 Nov-Dec;23(6):643-6, 648, 650-1.
[vi] Pintaudi B, Di Vieste G, Bonomo M. The Effectiveness of Myo-Inositol and D-Chiro Inositol Treatment in Type 2 Diabetes. Int J Endocrinol. 2016;2016:9132052.
[vii] Zhu X, Wu C, Qiu S, Yuan X, Li L. Effects of resveratrol on glucose control and insulin sensitivity in subjects with type 2 diabetes: systematic review and meta-analysis. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2017 Sep 22;14:60
[viii] Falach-Malik A, Rozenfeld H, Chetboun M, Rozenberg K, Elyasiyan U, Sampson SR, Rosenzweig T. N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine inhibits the development of glucose intolerance and hepatic steatosis in diabetes-prone mice. Am J Transl Res. 2016 Sep 15;8(9):3744-3756.
[ix] Havel PJ. A scientific review: the role of chromium in insulin resistance. Diabetes Educ. 2004;Suppl:2-14. PMID: 15208835.
[x] Kizilaslan N, Erdem NZ. The Effect of Different Amounts of Cinnamon Consumption on Blood Glucose in Healthy Adult Individuals. Int J Food Sci. 2019 Mar 4;2019:4138534
[xi] ELDerawi WA, Naser IA, Taleb MH, Abutair AS. The Effects of Oral Magnesium Supplementation on Glycemic Response among Type 2 Diabetes Patients. Nutrients. 2018 Dec 26;11(1):44.
[xii] Yin J, Xing H, Ye J. Efficacy of berberine in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Metabolism. 2008 May;57(5):712-7
Please note that the information contained within this website does not and should not replace medical advice, and is not intended to treat or diagnose. We always recommend you consult with your doctor. Our Nutritional Therapy team is highly trained and we offer one to one Nutritional Therapy Consultations, which are designed to be complementary to any medical treatment from a functional medicine approach, as well as offering a preventative & optimal health focus.