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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 July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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