Living with diabetes isn’t a life sentence. In fact, it is possible to reverse diabetes. Sure, it’s going to take a lifestyle adjustment, including getting regular exercise and diet modification. But with these 2 easy hacks, you’ll be on your way to managing your diabetes.
Hack #1: take a walk
A simple way to have your blood sugar return to normal after a meal is by taking a walk. It doesn’t have to be a super vigorous hike, but getting enough exercise is important for managing diabetes and this is especially true if you’re sedentary for most of the day.
Even more important than the advice to exercise is learning when to exercise. And if you only have time (or the motivation) to move your body once per day, research strongly suggests you should do it after dinner.
Most people eat their heaviest meal at night. And the biggest spike in blood sugar occurs after eating a large meal, especially if it contains lots of carbohydrates that have the potential of converting into sugar. (Think: pasta, bread, rice and other starchy carbohydrates.) Walking after a heavy meal is a proven way to improve blood sugar levels.
Consider this study from New Zealand. Two groups of people, most of whom had type II diabetes for 10 years, were compared. One group walked for 30 minutes a day for two weeks. The other group went for a 10-minute walk after each main meal. The results: blood sugar levels were significantly lower when participants walked after meals compared with the group who only went for one walk a day.
Meanwhile a different study compares exercising before a meal and after. The group with the lower blood sugar levels exercised after their meal, not before. This supports the first study that it’s vital to move around after eating a meal.
Hacks 1.1 and 1.2: When weather is bad, Use an App and watch lots of TV (while moving)
Hack 1.1 within this hack is to either set a timer or use an app to alert you to move and remind you to be more active. It’s important to emphasize that you just need to go for a walk. Not a power walk. And not a steep hike, or a jog. Or, God forbid, wind sprints. Just a casual stroll after each meal is all it takes to lower blood sugar. The problem with this solution of post-meal walks is that many of us are so busy that we often forget to go for a walk. The gravitational pull of the couch is so strong when you’re tired at the end of a long day. All you want to do is binge watch your favorite Netflix show.
Hack 1.2 is to beat the weather with a treadmill, or just walking in place. Weather can prevent some people from walking after a meal. If it’s -30 degrees outside, the last thing you’re going to want to do is go outside. The easy hack: walk in place while you watch TV. If you can make it a habit to just walk in place (or if you have a treadmill at home) while you watch TV, before you know it, you’ll have walked 30 minutes or even an hour. And you don’t need to be drenched in sweat to reap the benefits of a post-meal walk.
To reiterate, just move. Walk at a comfortable but not laborious clip. That’s all it takes to normalize your blood sugar level after a meal.
(Suggested reading: “Blunting post-meal glucose surges in people with diabetes”)
Hack #2: Eat Healthy Cereal – Easy Way to Lower Blood Sugar
Breakfast cereal is one of the most popular meals in the morning for people who need to quickly wolf something down before school or work. But most breakfast cereals are loaded with heavily processed grains (which are carbohydrates.) In fact, using as an example, Kellogg’s Raisin Bran, just one cup (and who eats just one cup?) contains almost 50 grams of carbs. That means if you pour yourself a big bowl of cereal in the morning, and add some banana slices you’ll start your day with over 100 grams of carbs. And that’s not even counting the sugar from milk.
It’s no wonder that many people by 10:30 or 11 in the morning need their third cup of coffee just to stay awake and be productive until it’s time for lunch. That’s because high carb breakfasts such as cereal and bagels, toast, muffins, danishes, donuts, etc. contain too many quick-burning carbs. These carbs quickly spike blood sugar levels. And what quickly goes up must come crashing back to Earth. It’s these blood-sugar fluctuations that produce mood swings, not to mention chronic metabolic disorders such as type II diabetes.
So what’s a cereal lover to do? You can’t paint stripes on a donkey and call it a tiger. Telling someone to stop eating cereal who has been eating it for decades may not be the best coaching advice. Instead, try Chef V’s Recipe for Healthy Cereal.
We’ll be offering more easy blood sugar lowering hacks and recipes in the future. But for now, enjoy a bowl of this yummy low-carb cereal. The recipe comes from the cookbook, Making Cleansing Easier by Chef V, aka Veronica Wheat Kress, the first entrepreneur to offer nationwide overnight delivery of 100% certified organic, cold-blended Green Drinks.
Healthy Cereal Recipe With Chef V’s Raw Almond Milk
- ½ cup Chef V’s Raw Almond Milk – recipe below – or use coconut milk
- ¼ cup crushed raw almonds
- ¼ cup crushed raw walnuts
- 1/4 cup fresh blueberries
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened shredded coconut
- 3 cups raw almonds
- 3 cups filtered water
- High power blender (I prefer Vitamix)
- Nut Milk Bag or Cheesecloth
To make the almond milk, process 3 cups of raw almonds and 3 cups filtered water in a Vitamix until liquefied. Strain through a cheesecloth into a mason jar and seal. Will keep for up to 3-5 days refrigerated.