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Feel Drowsy After Meals? Eat These 5 Foods Next Time To Stabilize Your Blood Sugar

Feel Drowsy After Meals? Eat These 5 Foods Next Time To Stabilize Your Blood Sugar

If you don’t have a family history of diabetes, chances are, you must be wondering why this article is of any interest to you. However, the fact is, eating unbalanced meals that cause blood sugar spikes can lead to the development of diabetes in your later years, family history notwithstanding.

A sure sign of your meals causing a blood glucose spike is if you feel particularly tired or drowsy after eating, since a higher than average blood glucose level does not make you more energetic, rather it’s exactly the opposite.

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The reason you should care about that is because the constant high blood sugar level spikes can lead to dysfunction of insulin in your body and eventually lead to diabetes. You cannot change the fact that you will age, but you can change the way you eat. By making sure that your blood sugar remains at a healthy level at all times, you are a step closer to reducing the risk of having diabetes in your later adult years.[1]

Why is a blood sugar spike bad?

As a result of a carbohydrate-rich or unbalanced meal, a blood sugar spike in a non-diabetic person basically sends the pancreas into overdrive. When the sugar (from carbohydrates, sugary drinks, or food) first hits the bloodstream, the pancreas releases the stored insulin to combat it and bring the blood glucose levels down. If you keep consuming a high-carb meal, then the pancreas has to make more insulin from scratch, putting it under stress. Repeated carb-rich meals can basically stress the pancreas to the point where it simply cannot make any more insulin and this is when a healthy person becomes a diabetic.

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High blood sugar can increase the risk of turning into full-blown diabetes over the years and can also cause short-term downsides, such as a general sluggishness, fatigue, excessive thirst, and urination among other side effects.

Eat these to stabilize your blood sugar levels

1. Leafy Greens[2]

Nutrient-dense and packed with the goodness of calcium and vitamins, leafy greens, such as spinach, broccoli, kale, chard, mustard, and fenugreek are a great for the body. You can add them raw to your salads and sandwiches or put them in stews, soups, and curries. You can even lightly sauté them with garlic and pepper. Their slow release of energy keeps you up and running, and your blood sugar at a happy constant level.

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2. Lean Protein[3]

The digestive system has to work hard to break down good, lean proteins, such as fish, eggs, and chicken. High-protein foods get broken down into cell-repairing amino acids and also keeps the insulin production at an optimum level, keeping you energetic throughout the day with a stable blood sugar level.

3. Fiber-Rich Foods[4]

While we can eat fiber, our body cannot break it down or digest it. Eating fiber works in two ways – first, it helps us feel full more quickly, so we end up eating less. Second, fiber adds roughage to the intestine, helping the body with a healthy bowel movement. These, in turn, keep the digestive system healthy and the blood sugar at a stable level.

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4. Whole Grains

Whole grains are complex carbohydrates[5] and have a low glycemic index – meaning that while they do break down into energy aka glucose, the body has to work hard to do so and the process is slow. The slow breakdown of these carbohydrates leads to a slow release of glucose into the bloodstream, thus maintaining the optimum level of blood sugar.

5. Coffee & Cinnamon[6]

Coffee increases the metabolism, which means it makes the body burn through the blood glucose fast. If you’ve had a high-carb meal, it’s a good idea to follow it up with coffee to stabilize the blood glucose levels. Cinnamon, too, has a similar impact to the body, and also helps in reducing triglycerides, as well as, cholesterol levels in the body.

Stay clear of refined carbohydrates, such as white breads and pastas, pastries, crackers, cookies, sugary drinks, juices, sodas, and processed foods with added sugar like flavored yogurt, candies, and desserts. Keep your blood sugar levels at a healthy constant[7] with the tips provided above and your energy will be at an all-time high.

Reference

[1] http://www.diabetesselfmanagement.com/blog/what-is-a-normal-blood-sugar-level/
[2] https://www.sharecare.com/health/type-2-diabetes/article/lower-blood-sugar-green-leafy-vegetables
[3] http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/what-can-i-eat/making-healthy-food-choices/meat-and-plant-based-protein.html
[4] http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/fiber/art-20043983
[5] https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/carbohydrates/carbohydrates-and-blood-sugar/
[6] http://www.lifeextension.com/magazine/2005/12/report_cinnamon/page-01
[7] http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-8042/5-foods-to-balance-blood-sugar.html

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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