Just Say No No to the Yo Yo

the latest wisdom in cutting the sugar out

Light-headedness, difficulty concentrating and confusion can strike us all from time to time.

But some individuals struggle with these issues on a regular basis, and it may be directly associated with their diet.

Hypoglycemia occurs when there is too little sugar in our bloodstream. Our body will react in several ways. Initially our adrenal gland will release epinephrine which stimulates a release of sugar from our liver, but this can also bring on symptoms of sweating, nervousness, rapid heartbeat, hunger, faintness and trembling.

If our blood sugar levels continue to fall, then it will affect our brain which can result in headaches, agitation, confusion, blurred vision and difficulty concentrating. If left untreated, it can lead eventually into convulsions and loss of consciousness.

Some people simply wait until symptoms arise, and then they reach for something quick. They grab a chocolate bar, or a can of pop for a quick sugar rush, thinking it is medicinal. Although this can supply a surge of quick sugar for our bloodstream, it may be too much, and too temporary.

It is wiser to be preventive. The most indispensable recommendation is to eat at regular and short intervals. Our blood sugar level normally peaks 45-90 minutes after eating a meal. So if you suffer from hypoglycemia, then you should aim to eat every three hours. But you also want to be particular what you select.

Carbohydrate rich foods such as grains, fruits and dairy products will be broken down into their basic components which include sugar. Some carbohydrates can be absorbed quicker than others, though.

Quickly digested carbohydrates include white breads, instant rice, potatoes and most commercial cereals. The general rule of thumb is, the more processed a food is, the quicker it is to digest.

There is a problem with quick-digesting carbohydrates: if your body is reactive to sugars, a quick-digesting carbohydrate may actually over stimulate your pancreas and cause it to secrete too much insulin. This may result in an initial surge in blood sugar followed by a rebound drop. Not the controlled scenario we're after.

Ideally we want your blood sugar level restored quickly, but we need it to level out and be maintained. Not simply fluctuate up and down like a yo-yo.

A better choice is slowly digested carbohydrates such as whole grains, long grain rice and multi grain pastas. The glycemic index is a useful tool to gauge whether a food is quick or slow and can be found at http://www.glycemicindex.com/.

Soluble fiber is another useful tool. This unique fiber actually forms a gel in our stomach and slows down the digestion process. These foods physically take longer to digest and act as a better-controlled energy source. They are also a good choice for cholesterol reduction and weight loss. Soluble fiber-rich foods include: oats, fruits and vegetables, legumes and nuts.

Protein can also delay digestion. The trick is to spread the protein throughout the day, rather than having the majority of it once a day at the supper meal. We should include small portions throughout the day which could include: eggs, nuts, seeds, cheese, beans, meat, fish or poultry.

This delay technique, whether it is by choosing low glycemic foods, soluble fiber-rich foods or including protein at your meals, can be quite effective for not only preventing hypoglycemic reactions, but also aiding in improving your overall energy level.

Caffeine and alcohol can also be culprits and that can cause our blood sugar levels to crash. But the bottom line is timing. A caffeine drink or alcohol by itself, especially if it has been several hours since you have eaten, may aggravate hypoglycemia. The rule of thumb is to try to limit these beverages, but also have them with food in order to dilute their impact.

Lastly, stay hydrated. Amzingly water is the great stabilizer. Drink water throughout the day. What I suggest is adding the juice of half a lemon or 4 tablespoons of unsweetened cranberry juice to 32 ounces of water with a sprinkle of Steviva Brand Stevia Powder . Aside from being less than 2 carbs, you will get the health benefits that the stevia provides along with the vitamin C and electrolytes that lemon have. You can substitute limes for lemons if you get bored. Click here to order stevia powder.

These approaches can be useful for managing hypoglycemia, and for optimizing our overall energy level for both the mind and body.

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