Do you feel in the dark with your diabetes diagnosis, or elevated blood sugar? That’s not your fault. Those 15 minute appointments with your general practitioner aren’t enough to make big change. That’s why I’m here. I work closely with patients to ensure they understand the things that actually matter to see CHANGE and not just band-aid it with medication.
This post is just to scratch the surface. To make you aware and empowered to make small changes but big results.
Be Aware. Take action early!
You can reverse diabetes and decrease insulin resistance. But, your insulin reserves aren’t unlimited and early action matters. Work with a dietitian or practitioner who specialized in diabetes. DO NOT JUST TAKE METFORMIN AND GET YOUR A1C DONE EVERY SIX MONTHS WITH YOUR GP. I mean that. These patients are the ones who come to me in the worst shape with the least amount of knowledge.
- Get your labs done. Check a fasting blood sugar, c-peptide or insulin, Hgb A1C and lipid panel.
- Meet with a trusted provider who focuses on lifestyle change.
- Assess what causes your blood sugar to rise. Get a continuous glucose monitor or meter to check fasting blood sugar on the regular.
Don’t fall for the fad diets and billion dollar supplement industry. Remember, inflammation presents in the form of stress, sedentary lifestyle and lack of sleep, too. Start at the root.
Know the factors that increase your risk!
- High blood pressure
- Triglyceride (fat) levels > 150
- Low HDL <40 mg/dL.
- Excessive alcohol intake; more than 1 daily drink per woman, 2 drinks per male.
- Elevated BMI >25
- Fasting blood sugar greater than 100, this is done on every basic CMP at your doctor’s office.
- A fasting insulin levels >10, 4 is ideal. This value is NOT routinely checked.
- An A1C >5.5 defines pre-diabetes. This is a 3 month average of your blood sugar.
- Sedentary lifestyle (less than 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week, by my watch)
Remember: your genes do not dictate your reality. Although genes dispose you to a higher risk, they do NOT pull the trigger. I see patients who defy those norms, regularly!
Actions you can take today
Avoid inflammatory foods
- Fast food
- Shelf stable “forever food”
- Fake sugar/diet foods/sugar alcohols
- Industrial oils – vegetable, canola, soybean, seed oils
- Excessive Alcohol (4 for women, 6 for men, weekly)
Do not drink diet soda. DO not consume fake sugar.
The research says it all, “Consumers of sugar substitutes may also be at increased risk of excessive weight gain, metabolic syndrome… frequent consumption of high-intensity sweeteners may have the counter-intuitive effect of inducing metabolic derangement. Consumption of calorie-free beverages sweetened with artificial and natural non-nutritive sweeteners have minimal influences on total daily energy intake, postprandial glucose and insulin compared with a sucrose-sweetened beverage.”
“One study in the journal Diabetes Care found sucralose (Splenda) could raise glucose and insulin levels. This included stevia, aspartame, sucralose, sugar alcohols like xylitol and maltitol, and all of the other heavily used and marketed sweeteners”.
You can drink hint water, sound tea, unsweetened tea, iced coffee, Chameleon cold brew & lemon water!
Vegetable Oil isn’t healthful
Use olive oil for low heat and avocado oil for high heat cooking. Add in even more anti-inflammatory foods daily! Think Mediterranean style dining with wild-caught fish salmon and tuna, freshly ground flax seed, dark leafy greens, berries, raw sprouts nuts and seeds. I love cooking from Primal Gourmet and Defined Dish for these types of meals.
Get enough sleep (7+ hours, at a consistent time)
Even a partial night of poor sleep contributes to insulin resistance. Make sleep a top priority to normalize insulin levels. And, avoid eating 2 hours before bed. Break your 12-14 hour fast in the morning with 20-35g protein. Fasting for health intermittent fasting resulted in beneficial effects that met or exceeded those of caloric restriction including reduced serum glucose and insulin levels.
Sweat for 30 minutes each day. NOT JUST CARDIO.
Incorporate the right type of exercise. A study in the Journal of Obesity found among its other benefits,burst training helped decrease fasting insulin and reduce insulin resistance. HIIT + weights/resistance training provides the most efficient way to normalize blood sugar and insulin levels. I use TMAC HIIT workouts when I’m on the go to make it possible to move, anywhere!
Avoid endocrine disruptors – fragrances, plastics, cookware, BPA bottles, NSAIDs
- Avoid plastics marked with a “PC”
- Substitute fresh, frozen, or dried food for canned.
- Never heat food in the can or plastic – transfer to a glass container for microwaving.
- Use a reverse osmosis filter for water
- Pop popcorn on a stovetop. Microwaveable popcorn bags are usually coated with PFAS chemicals on the inside.
- Do not use nonstick pans and kitchen utensils that are manufactured with PFAS chemicals.
- More swaps for these, here
Don’t be scared! Feel empowered by the knowledge you learn! I am here to help.