3 steps for good blood sugar balance
- Eat at the same times every day
- Get to bed at the same times every day
- Move every day in ways that are fun for you
Let’s talk about insulin first before we expand on the three steps
Insulin and glycogen… all these fancy biological terms. You may be overwhelmed by all the information and advice. I hope to make this article simple for you, to really break it down, so it will stick in your head!
I found this really cool graphic explanation of what insulin does. I mean that is pretty smart isn’t it!? How cool is the human body? So clever.
Sugar spikes and sugar lows
When you eat a meal, the carbohydrates will be converted to a sugar called glucose. This happens in the stomach and small intestines, it then gets absorbed into the bloodstream. This is a good thing because the glucose enters the cells and is available to be used as energy, and we need energy right!?
Our bodies are so amazing that it is constantly monitoring the blood sugar levels in our blood, too much glucose and it releases more insulin. What a balancing act!
Three main areas that energy is stored up
- Bloodstream – (super available energy) this is the first place that insulin stores or converts the sugars into energy, in the way of getting this glucose into the cells of the blood. We can use this energy immediately
- Liver and muscles – (quickly available energy) any energy that is not used up in the bloodstream will be stored in the liver and muscles as glycogen
- Fat cells – (only accessible when the other two don’t have!) this is long term storage of your energy, and to get it out of your fat cells you will need to go into a state of ketogenesis
1. Eat at the same times every day
Eating at very different times of the day can create stress within the body. If you are very inconsistent with your meal sizes and you vary them throughout the week this does not do your body any favours.
Rather, eat until you are only 80% full.
Don’t have large meals and very small meals, rather have similar portion sizes throughout the day.
Try to eat only 3 times a day (especially if you are over 30 years old). Eating too often throughout the day can cause insulin resistance in your body.
Meal timing can help your body regulate and helps your pancreas and your insulin have a break so that they don’t have to work so hard.
Our bodies operate in this circadian rhythm, and it is shown in the Doshas that our bodies are in the Pitta stage from 10 pm at night, this is a great time to go to bed.
If you can get to bed at the same time every night, or at least Monday to Friday, and get 7 hours in at least, you will be doing your body so many favours!
It will decrease your hunger pangs (not so much hunger hormone). Hoorah for those of you trying to eat less!
Try the power-down hour. Here is how it goes – if you plan to go to bed at 10pm, what you should try is go to your bedroom, don’t take your cell phone and don’t watch TV in your bedroom either, rather write a journal, do a brain dump, give thanks for what has happened today. Clean the room if it’s messy, put some cream on your feet and face, light a candle. Make it look like a spa in there!
This will set the atmosphere for a great nights sleep. Sleep quality is just as important as getting enough sleep. So make sure your room is cool, not hot, dark and not light and quiet… lie down and relax, and feel sleep coming upon you!
3. Move in ways that you love
Movement of any kind increases your mood, your health and helps balance your blood sugar levels.
If I said to you that you must exercise every day, there may be some negative emotions that stir up. Emotions like “I am not good enough because I can’t motivate myself to get to the gym” or something like that.
But if I said, just move a little every day and as often as you can. Stand up from your desk at work every hour for a few minutes. Play wrestle with your kids when you get home. Jump in a muddy puddle, jump on the trampoline when your kids are doing it too. Play catch or tag with your kids.
These are all simple movements we can do which will promote health and help balance blood sugar levels. So it is not all about intense and rigorous exercise. Just move, and do a movement that you enjoy, whatever it may be.
This week, be more childlike and less staid and boring. Live a little, be young again, have fun and play like a child
Get fit at home
Our sponsor for lifeshot podcast is Phoenix Fitness, these guys have some great equipment you can buy for doing exercise or movement at home (these recommendations are affiliate links)
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