[Article updated on 19/09/2023]
Balancing blood sugar is essential to maintaining good health. A stable blood sugar level helps avoid the inconveniences linked to glycemic variations, which can disrupt the body and lead to more or less serious complications. To achieve this, you should follow a few simple recommendations.
Before reading on
I’m not an expert in this field, but I am passionate about nutrition and health.
The articles you’ll find on my site are the result of in-depth research that I’d like to share with you. However, I would like to stress that I am not a health professional and that my advice should in no way replace that of a qualified physician. I’m here to guide you, but it’s important that you consult a professional for specific questions or medical concerns. Your well-being is important. So be sure to consult the appropriate experts and take the best possible care of yourself.
Understanding the role of sugar in the body
Sugar is an essential nutrient: it is the main source of energy for the human body. The carbohydrates we eat are converted into glucose, which is then absorbed into the bloodstream for distribution to cells. This regulation is mainly ensured by insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas.
An imbalance in this process can lead to hyperglycemia (blood sugar level too high) or hypoglycemia (sugar level too low). In the long term, these variations can have harmful effects on health, in particular by promoting the development of diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases or even certain neurological disorders.
Choosing the right foods to control your glycemic index
To maintain a stable blood sugar level, it is essential to look at the glycemic index (GI) of foods. The GI measures the ability of a food to increase blood glucose levels. It is classified on a scale from 0 to 100: the lower the glycemic index, the less quickly the food causes blood sugar to rise.
Low GI foods
Choose foods with a GI of less than 55:
- Green vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, etc.)
- Legumes (lentils, chickpeas, red beans, etc.)
- Fresh fruits with a low sugar content (apples, pears, cherries, etc.)
- Whole grains and their derivatives (whole grain bread, whole grain pasta, brown rice, etc.)
- Unsweetened dairy products (plain yogurt, cottage cheese, etc.)
Foods to avoid
Limit the consumption of foods with a GI greater than 70:
- Fast sugars (white sugar, jam, honey, etc.)
- Sweetened drinks (sodas, industrial fruit juices, etc.)
- Processed industrial products (biscuits, pastries, prepared meals, etc.)
- Refined starchy foods (white rice, white bread, white pasta, etc.)
Adopt good eating habits
In addition to choosing low GI foods, other practices can help stabilize blood sugar levels:
- Promote balanced and varied meals : combine proteins (meat, fish, eggs), green vegetables and complex carbohydrates (whole grains, legumes) to better regulate sugar absorption.
- Eat in moderate quantities : Excessive consumption of carbohydrates, even low GI, can lead to an increase in blood sugar levels. Be sure to stick to the recommended serving sizes.
- Do not skip meals : this promotes glycemic variations and encourages you to snack on unsavory foods.
- Limit saturated fats : they are often present in industrial products and contribute to the imbalance of blood sugar by slowing down the action of insulin.
The importance of physical activity
Finally, the role of exercise in blood sugar management should not be overlooked. Regular physical activity helps:
- Stimulate the absorption of glucose by the muscles, thereby reducing the concentration of sugar in the blood.
- Improve insulin sensitivity, allowing better blood sugar regulation.
- Prevent weight gain and fat storage, aggravating factors for blood sugar problems.
It is recommended to practice at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day, adapted to your abilities and preferences. This may include walking, cycling, swimming or even muscle strengthening exercises.
Maintain regular medical monitoring
Finally, it is essential to regularly consult a health professional to check the balance of your blood sugar and, if necessary, adapt your diet and lifestyle. An annual blood test makes it possible to detect possible abnormalities and to react quickly in the event of an imbalance.
By following these tips, you put all the chances on your side to maintain a stable blood sugar level and thus preserve your well-being and health in the long term.