Managing diabetes can be complicated, but not always. Here’s a simple mealtime trick that can minimize blood sugar spikes after eating.
Hi everyone…..Toby Smithson at DiabetesEveryDay coming to you today with credible and practical nutrition advice to help better manage your diabetes. Please subscribe to my channel and leave comments….I want to hear what you have to say.
Last week’s video was about the importance of what’s called “time in range”…..maybe more important than A1C. The concept is to keep your blood sugar level in the range between 70 and 180 milligrams per deciliter 70% of the time….all day, every day….and to limit your time below 70, which is a low blood sugar, to less than 4% of the time. I’ll link you back to that video at the end of this one if you missed it.
“Time in range” is easy to track if you wear a continuous blood glucose monitor….you can look at a line graph or just pull up a screen where you can read “time in range.” But for most people tracking “time in range” requires a lot of blood sugar checking with your meter, especially before meals and again 2 hours after meals. After meals is so important because food affects blood sugar….that’s when our blood sugar levels likely go out of range. So, the most significant way to improve your “time in range” is getting blood sugar levels back in range after a meal. And getting them back in range after eating is easiest if blood sugar levels don’t go too high out of range in the first place….right?
Last week I promised I would share a super easy “trick” to better manage blood sugar spikes after eating. I’m looking at a study from 2013 which compared the effect on blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes and in people with normal glucose tolerance…people without diabetes…. of simply eating vegetables before carbohydrate at your meal. This study was the same people eating exactly the same meal, except in reverse order on different days……carbohydrates first or vegetables first. Here’s the chart of daily blood glucose track in both groups….those with diabetes a solid line, those without a dotted line. You can see that the after- meal blood sugar spike when eating vegetables first, shown in green, was considerably less than when eating carbohydrates first, shown in red. In fact, the peak blood sugar levels after meals was consistently 40 mg/dl lower. And notice the same effect on those without diabetes….the dotted line. Vegetables first is “time in range” made easy…..a super simple habit that results in better health.
By the way, in case it hasn’t occurred to you yet, one more reason you have to be “on your toes” when eating out, where a basket of bread of tortilla chips sometimes beats you to your table. Eat that side salad first…..see you next time.