Maintaining blood glucose levels at moderate and stable levels is one of the goals of healthy eating, as it prevents overweight, inflammation, diabetes and many other disorders. Some dietary tips help control your level.
Controlling blood glucose levels is essential for health. If they increase too much after a meal, the chances of the excess being transformed into body fat are high. In addition, levels of insulin (the hormone that controls sugar) are increased and over time cells can become resistant to its action. Glucose spikes favor overweight, inflammation and metabolic disorders such as diabetes.
Jessie In-house is a biochemist and has thoroughly researched the effects of diet on glucose levels. Thanks to her work as a popularizer, she has become the “goddess of glucose”. You will find their findings in the book The Glucose Revolution (Diana editorial). You can also follow her on Instagram (@glucosegoddes). Here are some of his tips for lowering blood glucose quickly or preventing it from rising too high after eating.
THE VINEGAR TRICK (AND 12 MORE IDEAS) TO CONTROL GLUCOSE WHEN EATING
1. TAKE VINEGAR BEFORE EATING
Fill a large glass of water and add a tablespoon of vinegar, preferably apple, organic and unrefined. Take it before the meal and before having any sweets (at a birthday party, for example).
Jessie In-house explains that the impact of this glass of water on blood glucose and insulin levels in the following hours “is overwhelming”.
The effect is not only noticeable if you get a glucose test, but you will notice how cravings and energy drop are reduced. In addition, without you realizing it, you will burn more body fat.
2. A STARTER SALAD
Currently most people eat a single dish. It would not hurt to recover the habit of the two dishes, as long as the first is a fresh salad without carbohydrates (pasta or legumes).
If you eat fiber before carbohydrates, glucose levels will rise less and more slowly. That’s why starting the meal with a good salad is a great idea. In addition, if you season it with vinegar and extra virgin olive oil, the effect will be enhanced.
On the other hand, fiber will feed the beneficial intestinal microbiota, which will favor good digestion and immunity.
3. ADD CINNAMON TO FOOD
Cinnamon can not only replace sugar in many preparations, but also reduces the speed of glucose assimilation and promotes fat burning.
Although it may seem strange, you can merge this advice and the first one we have given you in this article: prepare an infusion of cinnamon and add a tablespoon of vinegar.
However, to achieve truly spectacular effects, it is necessary to take more cinnamon than we use to give flavor. In scientific studies they are taken from 0.5 to 6 g a day.
4. EAT IN THE RIGHT ORDER
In addition to starting with a green starter, you can eat the rest of the dishes in the following order:
If it’s possible and it’s not so mixed that you can’t separate the ingredients, start with vegetables, then fats and proteins, and then starches and sugars. This order of intake has the best effects on glucose levels.
5. HAVE A SALTY BREAKFAST
Breakfast cereal flakes in the morning is too comfortable and unhealthy a habit.
It is also not a good idea to drink the typical coffee with milk and sugar and a doughnut or a croissant. Your glucose will go up and your energy will not last.
It is much better a salty and complete breakfast. It will allow you to keep sugar, insulin and hunger under control.
If you want ideas to prepare savory breakfasts, you can read the following two articles:
- 5 salty breakfasts with fiber and protein
- 7 salty breakfasts you’ll want to prepare every day
6. COCONUT MILK, BETTER THAN OAT MILK
If you don’t want to give up your matcha latte in the morning, choose the right milk.
Oat milk has many followers, but it is one of the ones that contains more carbohydrates. To flatten your glucose curve, coconut milk or soy milk is better (always without added sugars, of course).
7. DON’T EAT IF YOU’RE NERVOUS
Stress causes the body to quickly assimilate glucose. If you’re nervous, calm down before eating.
- Exercise or simply shake your body to release stress.
- If you eat something, it’s better to be salty than sweet.
- If you have no choice but to eat something rich in carbohydrates, take a little fiber, fat or protein first (it can be, for example, a handful of nuts or a Greek yogurt with a tablespoon of crushed flax seeds).
8. CHOOSE FRUITS THAT DON’T TRIGGER GLUCOSE
All fruit taken in moderation is healthy, but its effect on glucose levels varies quite a bit. If you’re making an effort to control them, keep in mind that:
- Tropical fruits (such as pineapple, bananas, and mangoes) are among those that raise glucose levels the most.
- Berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries) are among the fruits with the least impact on glucose.
9. CHOOSE THE BEST TIME TO HAVE SOMETHING SWEET
If you have a treat for something sweet, follow these two tips:
- Take a moderate ration.
- Eat the sweet after you have taken another food rich in fiber and fat, for example, a handful of almonds or walnuts.
10. EXERCISE AFTER EATING
Activating the muscles is the best way to limit the increase in blood glucose and reduce the risk of excess calories being transformed into body fat.
The ideal is to combine aerobic exercise (running, swimming, cycling, jumping) with moments of maximum intensity, demanding strength exercises with the muscles and a final series of stretches.
11. DO NOT TAKE CARBOHYDRATES WITHOUT ACCOMPANIMENT
Eating moderate portions of carbohydrates (bread, pasta, rice) is necessary because they help you get the energy you need throughout the day.
But, first of all, you have to choose foods well: they have to always be whole because they contain fiber and more nutrient density.
But you also don’t have to eat them alone. Surely you have heard more than once that if you take a plate of pasta, what will make you fat is the sauce, because it adds many calories.
It is true that it will have more calories, but the message is not good, because it is advisable to combine pasta with a little fat (and if possible, with fiber and protein).
Therefore, the correct strategy is to reduce the amount of pasta to add a rich homemade fried tomato sauce and a little cheese.
12. TAKE THE FRUIT WITH NUTS
This advice follows the logic of the previous one. It is about accompanying the carbohydrates of the fruit with fat, protein and fiber.
The same amount of fruit, with and without the nut company, produces a different glucose curve. If you take it with nuts, the peak is lower and a slightly elevated level is maintained for longer (your energy will not decline).
If you’re worried about calories, just reduce the amounts of each food. You can take, for example, half an apple and three nuts. If you take this combination twice a day it is better than ingesting it all at once.
13. PASTA, RICE AND POTATOES, ALWAYS COOLED AND REHEATED
When you eat potatoes, rice or pasta from the previous day that you have kept in the fridge, the effect on your glucose levels of this second intake is much healthier.
The reason is that part of the starches, which provide 4 calories per gram, are transformed into resistant starch, which provides only 2 calories and also serves as food for the beneficial intestinal microbiota.
It’s not that all the starch in these foods turns into resistant starch. But the calorie savings and the effects on glucose and microbiota are worth it.
Finally, do not rely solely on one of the tricks we have offered you. It is best to put them all into practice. It can be a simple revolution, but very effective in your diet and your health.