I decided to start testing my blood sugar. I am non-diabetic but overweight. 1) as a non-scale way of measuring my progress 2) I like to collect data anyway 3) I think seeing the stark numbers will reinforce dietary discipline. When I am good, I am very very good. When I am bad, I am horrid :)
After a month of sliding further and further away from clean-eating, I tested my fasting blood sugar this morning. I actually tested it after several hours of being awake as I need to replace the batteries in a borrowed meter. I had already gone to crossfit.
My result: 95. How long does it typically take to see improvement in this? I am waiting for my 1-hr post breakfast test. I figure I will test a LOT during this first week to establish a pattern, and then maybe once a week or so.
What is the most important number to keep track of, for overall health purposes? My fasting or my time it takes for blood sugar to return to fasting levels?
asked byCatherine_2 (218)
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on December 21, 2012
at 09:14 PM
The things that I think help:
Cut back on fructose. If you must sweeten use a glucose syrup. I posted this article on another thread, fructose does cause more insulin resistance then glucose: http://www.jci.org/articles/view/37385
Fast sometimes. I like the article posted above.
No grains. Grains->gut damage->leaky gut->things in your blood stream that should not be there, and thus are given to your liver to handle->liver (and other) inflammation. Anything else that causes inflammation in you should also be avoided. Some things like grains are common though. Be nice to your liver.
Low carb, not no-carb. Don't stress the insulin-glucose system, but let it get a little work.
No artificial sweeteners. They cause an insulin response in many people, and you want to lower insulin. One of the things behind insulin resistance is that there is too much insulin around. Think of it like background noise, if you live near the train tracks, you stop hearing the train. If your cell always have lots of insulin around, they down-regulate their insulin receptors.
Exercise. Especially if you lift weights. This up-regulates the insulin receptors. Your cells use energy and get hungry.
on December 21, 2012
at 08:02 PM
- exercise: yeah it sucks, but you HAVE to move in order to be healthy. If you really want the full effect, HIIT and resistance training (bodyweight or free weights, whatever) are best for improving insulin sensitivity within the muscle cells. Low intensity cardio (like long, brisk walks) is great for dropping fat, which further improves insulin function.
- eliminate ALL NADS: This means reducing omega-6 LA as much as possible (personally, I think reducing and possibly eliminating all nuts, seeds, avocado, and olive oil is a good idea too). Don't eat grains/beans/legumes, and eat fruit sparingly and only if you are already insulin sensitive and athletic. If you are currently insulin resistant, don't consume alcohol, even the supposedly healthy red wine. I'd eliminate it. If you are lean, athletic, and healthy- then it's your choice but use good judgement.
- eat carbs: But eat them wisely. If you go for too long in a very low carb diet, your body will decrease it's carbohydrate metabolism enzymatic activity, and it is generally accepted that the standard protocol high-fat VLC ketogenic diet produces pathologic (or is it physiologic? I get confused) insulin resistance. kind of like the "use it or lose it" thing, just don't abuse it. Ideally, carb back load or time your carbs within your workout time frame where you are most insulin sensitive. Ideally, do both. Also, favor starches over fruit, as they contain the most natural form of carbohydrate (glucose) that our bodies require (perhaps in significant amounts, depending on your metabolism and activities).
- consume r-ALA: I'm highly insulin sensitive and even I consume 150mg of r-ala with my post workout carbs. It helps with carbohydrate transport without requiring additional insulin production. If you weight train or do HIIT, this means getting glucose into the muscle cells.
- don't get fat AND don't get skinny with no muscle mass Strive to build a lean and athletic physique that is powerful. If you are concerned only with aesthetics, personally I believe aesthetics come secondary to athleticism. It's just athleticism with a good diet that creates a reasonably low body fat percentage.
- Get your beauty sleep Sleep is vital. Get it. I aim for 8-10 hours. And even then, I cat-nap anywhere and as often as possible, practically on command.
That's about all I can think of. That basically narrows it down to a true paleo diet- meat/fish (organs if you can get high quality ones), eggs, roots, vegetables (green ones and starchy roots/tubers), coconut milk/manna/oil. I guess palm oil and butter are fine too, but I don't use them. From what I understand palm oil is fairly low in o-6 and high in certain tocopherols. But palm oil is hard for our bodies to burn for energy at rest, at least, according to some studies. MCTs are very easy to use for energy, and apparently omega 3s from fish oil are as well...but I don't recommend supplementing. Rather, eat some seafood now and again.
on December 21, 2012
at 09:03 PM
To answer your last question your number should be involved with time of day/time since last meal/what kind of meal.
on December 07, 2012
at 06:50 PM
Fasting is useful. My blood sugar climbs until I eat in the morning, which is kind of interesting. When my FBGs creep up either I'm not eating well or not getting enough sleep.
I tested in 15 minute increments after eating for a few days to identify when I typically peak--everyone is different. Now I know when to test to see if a particular food causes a spike in BG--that's what I'm looking for. Normally my post meal BG's run 90 to 110 or so. If higher, something I ate is too carby for me.
I follow a LCHF Paleo diet. So 98% of the time my BGs are boringly good--that means I only have to test if trying out something I don't usually eat, or I'm not feeling "right". Occasionally I'll have hypoglycemia, either waiting too long to eat (10+ hours) or because some carby thing spiked and then dropped my blood sugar. At that point the meter is useful to tell me that I messed up (eg, husband forgot to tell me he put wheat flour in zucchini fritters) and that my BG is low but not seriously low (I have symptoms around 70 mg/DL).