I’ve always had trouble stabilising my blood sugar. Until maybe 5 years ago I had no idea that it was such a problem for me. I thought the sudden feeling of anger & panic, mixed with a desperate need for food was just a normal part of life!
This is by no means a medical opinion but rather the things that over the years I have found particularly helpful in keeping my blood sugar stable. If I can avoid the sudden spikes & lows that follow I feel happier, more stable & am generally a more pleasant yogi to be around!
Eat frequently & learn to snack well. I’m not talking about a muslie bar coated in honey or even a handful of dried fruit. There is a recipe for good snacking material & it goes like this- protein, carbohydrate, healthy fats– these three things combined make a satisfying, blood sugar stabilising snack.
Protein ideas: Nuts, nut butters, seeds, soaked chia seeds, hummus or bean dips, cheese, yogurt (I like goats milk as this type of milk protein is easier to digest than cows), eggs.
Carbohydrate ideas: Veggies like cucumbers or carrots, good quality bread, fruit, flat breads, oats.
Healthy fats ideas: Cold pressed virgin oils like olive, coconut or flaxseed, avocado, hummus (protein fat combo), nuts & seeds.
Some of my favourites combinations.
- Hummus or boiled egg, cucumber, toast
- Smoothies- banana, berries, almond butter, almond milk OR banana, good quality chocolate powder, avocado, nut butter, coconut milk, water
- Fig paste, cheddar, rye toast
- Soaked chia seed ‘pudding’ with fruit (seasonal) & toasted seeds
- Flat bread with pumpkin, feta & thin apple slices
- Smoothie bowl (like a smoothie but thicker & eaten with a spoon) Fruit, rolled oats & yogurt topped with nuts, seeds & more fruit
- Cooked fruit, yogurt, toasted seeds
Besides choosing intelligent snacking ingredients I’ve become more aware of when I tend to get low blood sugar & I try to eat before it gets too low & becomes more difficult to stabilised. I eat a snack straight after exercise. I eat smaller meals spread out through out the day. I avoid eating sugary deserts just before bed, to avoid surges of blood sugar in the night. I choose more blood sugar friendly desert options like poached pears, yogurt & a touch of coconut sugar.
Stress levels really effect my blood sugar too. When your body flips over into the fight or flight response, which happens when we feel very nervous, stressed, upset or angry, as a normal ‘animal’ response to life. When we have a tendency to low blood sugar it can be hard to keep our levels stable during & after a stressful situation. Although this is more of an ongoing thing it really is just another reason to keep working on ourselves & implement things into our lives that make us feel more balanced, centred & resilient. Yoga, walking, meditation, yoga nidra, guided relaxations & being outside are my favourite ways to bring balance back to my life & reconnect to my centre. What are your favourite ways to relax? Do you have a favourite snack with the three magical ingredients categories in it?