Blood sugar is not just something which should be monitored by diabetics, as the way your body feels is quite often determined by these levels. Low blood sugar can leave you feeling dizzy, cold or tired, whereas a high blood sugar level usually means you feel more awake and full of beans.
However, high blood sugar is usually temporary, and caused by eating or drinking something sugary or full of carbohydrates (most likely an unhealthy food), such as fizzy drinks, chocolate or chips. Of course these can be enjoyed in moderation but will most likely cause a blood sugar spike, before crashing later in the day.
Here are 7 foods you should try to incorporate into your diet which don’t affect blood sugar levels, giving you a steady source of energy all day:
These are an ideal food to incorporate into your diet as you can enjoy them as part of a main meal, in a soup or as a snack. Carrot sticks are a great alternative to crisps if you’re looking for something to graze on in between meals.
Another vegetable that should regularly feature in your diet is broccoli, as the leafy green is full of protein and is a great source of calcium and iron which is beneficial for those with problems digesting dairy or who do not eat meat.
If you’re a fan of Mediterranean foods, it should be easy to incorporate peppers into your cooking. Alternatively, pop them in a stir fry alongside the other vegetables mentioned for a healthy, low calorie meal which will keep your blood sugar regular.
It’s not all about the veggies, though they are a great starting point. Foods like peanuts which are high in protein can offer steady release energy whilst at the same time being an easy to access healthy snack you can take on the go.
5. Wholegrain bread
Although foods high in carbohydrates, such as white bread, increase the blood sugar levels, wholegrain versions of these foods tend to have a much lesser effect on blood sugar levels. Switch the white bread for a wholegrain alternative, and enjoy up to 3 slices a day as part of a healthy diet recommended by nutritionists.
Most herbs are great for you all round, with no effect on blood sugar and no fats whilst still adding flavor and variety to your favorite foods. If you have the space, you could grow your own herbs such as parsley, basil and rosemary, and add them to soups, wholegrain pasta dishes or use to season meats. These help keep your diet varied and your palate happy.
It’s not just vegetarian foods which are great for maintaining blood sugar levels, as a lot of white and lean meats such as fish offer a healthy and nutritious source of protein without causing any blood sugar spikes. As an added benefit, most oily fish is rich in Omega 3 which is known to lower the risk of heart disease if 1-2 portions are eaten per week.
These are of course just some of the many examples of foods which can help maintain your blood sugar levels. Try incorporating some of these into your diet and you’ll start feeling the benefits in no time.
[Image: Kyle May]