What Everyone Needs to Know
If you’re having trouble losing weight, or sticking to a diet because of uncontrollable sugar cravings, you need look no further than your blood sugar for answers.
Understanding how your blood sugar works isn’t difficult. In fact, it’s essential to learn how to regulate your own blood sugar because once you can do that, you’ll be able to stick to a healthy diet (that YOU control), lose weight, get more sleep and enjoy more stable moods.
In the next three minutes, I’ll tell you why your blood sugar continues to surge and drop – leaving you in a fat building cycle of carb cravings and fatigue… the true cause of those cravings (it really isn’t lack of willpower)… and the simple steps you can take right now to get your blood sugar back in control.
1. Blood Sugar is a Vicious Cycle
Once your blood sugar gets too high, it can be difficult to get it back to normal. In a nutshell, this “boom and bust” cycle of blood sugar levels occurs in three steps as you eat and digest food:
- Your body turns simple and complex carbohydrates into glucose, or sugar. Cells can only use energy from the food you eat if it’s turned into sugar first.
- Your blood sugar rises.
- Your pancreas reacts to the rise in sugar levels and releases a hormone called insulin. Insulin helps the glucose move into your cells to be used as energy. Too much sugar will be stored as fat for later use.
When your body experiences that spike in blood sugar, your pancreas produces insulin in surges. The insulin wave then overdoes its job–it takes more sugar out of your blood than necessary, leaving you “low”. That’s why you can experience sudden fatigue, shakiness, and irritability–making you want to eat something sugary, fast.
More often than not, the optimally balanced meal isn’t in immediate reach–and who can cook when your body is panicking? So you binge on bread, ice cream, or something that your body recognizes as “fast and easy.” That starts the whole cycle over again.
Soon, that excess sugar overwhelms your body. High levels of insulin tell your cells that energy is readily available, so they need to store the sugar as fat instead of burning it–and that’s where those extra pounds come from!
Over time, your cells may slowly become insulin-resistant, making your pancreas work extra hard. It may stop producing as much insulin. Both situations lead to diabetes and other serious diseases down the road.
2. Blood Sugar is Controlled By Hormones–Not Your Willpower!
Some people think that if you could just keep from bingeing during phases of low blood sugar, the cycle would be broken. It’s extremely difficult to control when your body is panicking–so it’s time to stop beating yourself up for those carb binges.
Your blood sugar level is controlled by the hormone insulin, not your carb binges. When insulin doesn’t do its job–or your cells become insulin-resistant–your blood sugar stays high. Your blood becomes thick and syrupy. This is called hyperglycemia.
After the insulin surge, your blood is left with too little sugar and insulin, causing the shakes and that all-too-familiar sugar feast.
3. You CAN Reset the Cycle!
Resetting the vicious cycle will take a little time and willpower, but there are many ways you can help your body reset its blood sugar cycle to a more healthy pattern.
Dr. Brooke Kalanick, a naturopathic practitioner, has several excellent tips for maintaining a steady blood sugar level. She offers the following tips:
- Eat every three to four hours.
- Eat a balanced meal with both protein and fibrous vegetables.
- Avoid sugar and simple carbs like soda, sugary juice, bread, pasta, pastries and so on.
- Don’t let yourself get to the point of shakiness. Be prepared with protein- or healthy fat-based snacks, like nuts.
- Adjust your intake of starchy carbs like whole grains, beans and potatoes. Per meal, you should eat no more than 14 bites of starch. This will keep your energy up without leaving you feeling fatigued after eating.
Nature has also given us another excellent resource for leveling out blood sugar levels and curbing those sugar cravings.
The essential trace mineral chromium helps produce insulin, which as you just learned helps your cells use or store the sugar you eat. At the same time it also helps reduce carb cravings, thereby leveling out both ends of that vicious blood sugar cycle.
Unfortunately, most of us are deficient in chromium because you’re only able to absorb between 0.4% and 2.5% of the chromium you get through your diet. The rest is sloughed away, unused.
The best way to get enough chromium to help reset your insulin, blood sugar levels, and carb cravings is to bypass the intestinal tract altogether, and absorb your chromium sublingually–in other words, beneath your tongue.
By using an oral spray high in chromium you’ll get the full effect of craving-crusher chromium in less than 30 seconds. Weight loss is simply a happy side effect of increased absorption of this important mineral.
Kalanick B. Why Blood Sugar Matters for Fat Loss. Better By Dr. Brooke. 24 May 2013.