Our body needs energy to maintain normal function. We get energy from food, which then breaks down into smaller parts. When we eat carbohydrates, our body breaks them down into glucose, a simple sugar that’s your body’s primary source of fuel. Glucose travels through the body in your bloodstream, and it’s taken up by cells—in the muscles, the brain, nearly everywhere—to be transformed into energy that helps you carry out nearly all your body’s activities, from calculating finances to exercising in the gym. Without enough blood sugar, our bodies wouldn’t work. Too much blood sugar can cause problems, too.
Blood sugar balance is preserved by our hormones. This balance ensures that the body has enough energy available when we need it, and it’s mostly maintained by hormones: insulin and glucagon.
Insulin, which is made and released from the pancreas, lowers blood sugar by initiating cells throughout the body to take in glucose. As glucose enters the cells to be used as energy or stored as glycogen, there is less left in the blood. Here are a few tips on what we can eat to keep a healthy blood sugar:
Eat More Fiber
High-fiber foods, especially soluble fiber, has been proven to help keep blood sugar balanced and in control. You should be able to get enough by eating a diet rich in plant-based foods.
Reduce/Eliminate Refined Sugars
Cutting down on foods made with refined sugars can be a good habit to get into if you’re trying to keep your blood sugar in check.
Consume Food Low on the GI Index
The glycemic index (GI) is a measurement of how food affects our blood sugar. It’s based on how fast the body breaks any carbohydrate-containing food down into glucose. Higher numbers (from about seventy to one hundred) indicate that a food will cause a faster increase in blood sugar levels, while lower ones (under fifty) show foods that cause a bigger rise.
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