Having diabetes means your body has trouble controlling blood sugar. You are at higher risk for complications if blood sugar is too high too often, and the key to staying healthy is managing blood sugar in smart ways.
A lot of the day-to-day responsibilities for monitoring blood sugar fall upon your shoulders rather than those of your healthcare provider. You might do your own testing, medication administration, and meal planning, for example. These are some ways to manage blood sugar, including choosing good foods to prevent sharp spikes in blood sugar.
Monitoring Blood Sugar
To know how your blood sugar management program is working, it is important to monitor blood sugar as often as your healthcare provider suggests. For many patients with diabetes, you might test blood sugar in the morning and once or twice during the day, often before a meal.
These are target levels for many patients.
- Before a meal: 80 to 130 mg/dl
- 2 hours after a meal: less than 180 mg/dl
Your own targets may vary, so talk to your healthcare provider about individual blood sugar targets while fasting and after a meal. Also be sure you know how to use your blood glucose machine, since taking samples properly and calibrating the machine can help you get accurate results.
Preventing and Treating Low Blood Sugar
Low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, is just as dangerous as high blood sugar. It can land you in the emergency room if it is severe. Moderate hypoglycemia is something you may be able to treat yourself with fast-acting carbohydrates or glucagon, but it is best to limit hypoglycemic episodes. Luckily, keeping blood sugar stable, by preventing extreme highs and lows, can help prevent hypoglycemia as well as hyperglycemia.
Diet and Exercise for Managing Blood Sugar
Some healthcare providers suggest following a low-carb or moderately low-carbohydrate diet to keep blood sugar in check. Losing weight if you are overweight and have prediabetes or type 2 diabetes can also lower blood sugar and improve your body’s ability to control blood sugar.
These are some dietary strategies for managing blood sugar.
- Eating a high-fiber diet, such as lots of non-starchy vegetables and beans.
- Choosing small amounts of whole grains, nuts, and beans.
- Limiting sweets and sugar-sweetened beverages.
- Limiting refined grains and fried foods.
Being physically active is something else you can do to improve blood sugar levels in your body. It’s actually a great way to lower blood sugar if yours is high, and exercising regularly can keep insulin sensitivity up. Ask your doctor before starting an exercise program.
Delicious Foods on a Diabetes Diet
Eating right does not mean avoiding great-tasting foods. Netrition has a range of convenient and delicious products that you can enjoy from breakfast time through dinner and dessert, and everything in between. In particular, limiting added sugars can help.
These are a few of our sugar-free foods.
- Chocolate Bars, Jelly Beans, and other Candies
- Salad Dressings, Fruit Spreads, Syrups, and Barbecue Sauces
- Soda, Hot Cocoa, and Cappuccino
- Pudding and Gelatin Mixes
- Cookies and Cake Mixes
Managing diabetes is a big task, but Netrition can help shoulder it. We are with you when it comes to managing blood sugar and choosing sugar-free foods to keep deliciousness in your diet without spiking blood sugar.