In the past several months, we’ve been trying to flatten the curves of COVID 19, while keeping our immunity optimal. Think every time you drink Green Tea, you are strengthening your immunity. Another curve you would like to pay attention to is “blood sugar spikes.” We will discuss how to flatten the curve of blood sugar spikes naturally.
Insulin Resistance Creeps Up Despite Good Blood Sugar Test Results
If you are thinking blood sugar becomes an issue only when your blood sugar test shows higher than 120, or when you are diagnosed with diabetes, you may be fooled. The fact is insulin health may be compromised while the blood sugar test results appear still “normal.”
Living in a culture abundant with ready-to-eat food, we tend to keep eating all day long. Every time you eat, blood sugar spike happens and the pancreas releases more insulin more often and your body cells may be gradually developing “insulin resistance.”
“Insulin resistance” is called when the cells in your body don’t respond well to insulin and can’t easily take up enough blood sugar from your blood, resulting in more insulin released.
While your blood sugar tests show “normal” results, your pancreas may be working twice, three times, or even five times harder to keep up as insulin resistance gets worse.
“MedlinePlus,” a subdivision of U.S. National Library of Medicine, explains, “At first, insulin resistance causes the body to make extra insulin, to make up for ineffective insulin. Extra insulin in the bloodstream can cause hypoglycemia. But insulin resistance tends to get worse over time. Eventually, it decreases your body’s ability to make insulin. As insulin levels drop, blood sugar levels rise.”
Insulin sensitivity is likely taxed for over the years if you do not keep the blood sugar spike slow, flattened, and infrequent.
Why Flatten Blood Sugar Spikes
Here are more reasons why we would like to keep the curve low:
– The higher blood sugar creates more free radicals, which cause oxidative damage and inflammation.
– The higher insulin makes you feel hungrier because it blocks leptin, the satiety hormone that signals to the brain to stop eating. Thus, the more we eat, the hungrier we get.
– A higher level of insulin also prevents fat from being broken down for energy.
5 Things We Can Do to Make Profound and Immediate Favorable Changes on Blood Sugar Spikes
Avoiding sugars, refined grains, and overly processed foods is fundamental. At the same time, increasing whole foods and fiber in the diet is also a big part of the battle plan. What else can we do? Fortunately, some holistic, natural approaches make immediate positive impacts on the system.
1. Choose the Right Drink to Go with Meals
What you drink along with your meal makes a difference in your blood sugar spikes. Which one do you think is the best to lower the blood sugar spikes?
a) White bread and water
b) White bread and red wine
c) White bread and red wine without alcohol
The result is as follows:
a) The blue line shows the case of eating white bread with water. The curve starts slower than b) and peaks out lower than b).
b) White bread and red wine is the red line–it skyrockets.
c) White bread and red wine with no alcohol is shown by the purple line. This is the slowest blood sugar spike but the peak is higher and lasts longer than a).
The above screenshot was taken from Dr. Greger’s video: How to Prevent Blood Sugar and Triglyceride Spikes after Meals
Green Tea: Better than Water?
The phytochemical compounds and antioxidants in wine helped the spike of blood sugar in the case of c). Then, what would happen if you drink Green Tea instead of wine?
There are scientific studies that show Green Tea antioxidants help reduce blood sugar spikes. A different study shows Green Tea antioxidants helped to delay “gastric emptying” to a small, but statistically significant extent.
But, what about Caffeine? Caffeine may make you less sensitive to insulin. That means your cells don’t absorb as much sugar from your blood after you eat. Consequently, your body has to make more insulin.
As Green Tea is much lower in caffeine than coffee, Green Tea makes a more “blood sugar friendly” drink. While I was growing up in Japan, we always had a warm cup of tea or a cold glass of tea with meals. Thanks to the powder form, it is now easy to make a real Sencha, Genmaicha, and even Hojicha instantly. But I also love to brew loose leaf tea, hot or cold, and enjoy the process and the distinctive flavor.
2. Use Healthier “Condiments”
If you are not a hardcore vegetarian and would like to enjoy animal protein from time to time while minimizing the negative impact, you can top it with superfood.
Studies show avocado, nuts, berries, or leafy greens added to the hamburger reduces the free radicals and oxidative damage. Green Tea Powder is also a handy “super condiment.” We enjoy Green Tea Powder in our cooking. “Just sprinkle here and there,” as many of our customers say.
3. Choose The Best Time to Exercise
Studies show that consuming dietary Polyphenols with a meal AND completing physical activity after a meal may mitigate postprandial metabolic dysfunction in adults with features of metabolic syndrome. According to the report, the walking speed does not have to be strenuous to cause blood sugar to decrease. Excitingly, adults may extend this benefit to improve their overall daily glycemic load by walking after multiple meals.
4. Secure Quality Sleep
Lack of sleep and stress also increase the blood sugar level. Sleep deprivation also increases the production of cortisol, which can cause insulin resistance. Lack of sleep also triggers changes to other hormones, including thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) and testosterone, which can lead to decreased insulin sensitivity and higher blood sugar.
5. Rest Mind
When you are stressed out, you tend to go looking for food and begin a vicious cycle. Meditation activates your parasympathetic nervous system and reduces the stress, the cortisol, the insulin, and the hunger. The parasympathetic system is also called “the rest and digest system”, as it slows the heart rate, increases intestinal and gland activity, and relaxes sphincter muscles in the gastrointestinal tract.
We hope you will enjoy exploring new ways to empower your meal and flatten the curve of blood sugar spikes using Green Tea. Herbal Tea is also a great choice if you are practicing intermittent fasting.
It’s been 7 months since the first case of COVID 19 was confirmed on January 20, 2020 in the U.S. “New normal”, which came with a sense of deep uncertainty, has started to sink into our mind and lifestyle. Although the familiarity is always comforting, there are some “normals” we can choose not to go back to. Stay safe and well, and keep moving on!
Meet the Author: Kiyomi
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