What do Insulin Resistance and Summer Have in Common?
Plenty, it turns out, and it has everything to do with what you’re eating this summer. Even though summer brings with it an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables, making it easier to eat healthy, it also brings added risks.
What could taste better during the lazy, hazy days of summer than fruity cocktails and rich ice cream? Unfortunately, these are the foods that can spell danger for your blood sugar level. The few minutes of pleasure that you derive from those cold, sugary treats can pave the way for decades of chronic illness.
Blood Sugar Basics
When you eat sugary treats, your blood sugar levels rise. Your blood sugar level is a measure of how much sugar or glucose is circulating in your bloodstream. Too much glucose in your blood is dangerous, so your body works hard to lower the levels. It does this by releasing insulin, a hormone which enables your cells to absorb the excess glucose.
The danger comes when you continue eating too much sugar, because your body responds by producing more and more insulin. Too much insulin trains your cells to become resistant to insulin, and this is called insulin resistance.
The net effect is that it then takes more and more insulin to make your cells remove the glucose from your blood. When this happens, your blood sugar levels stay elevated, your insulin levels stay elevated and you develop pre-diabetes.
Still want that ice cream? I know, me, too. ;-)
Moderation is the Key
Don’t panic. This doesn’t mean that you can never indulge in a sugary treat again. What it means is that you need to be smart about the amount you eat and how you eat it.
Have you ever heard of the glycemic index? It is simply a way of categorizing foods according to their effects on the level of glucose in your blood. A food with a high glycemic index will cause more glucose to build up than will a food with a low glycemic index.
In order to control your blood sugar levels, it is helpful to eat lots of foods with a low glycemic index. And if you eat foods with a high glycemic index, be sure to pair them with low glycemic foods in order to slow the effect on your blood sugar.
High glycemic foods include white flour, white sugar, white rice, and even big, white potatoes. Low glycemic foods are foods that have lots of fiber and protein. These would include beans, whole grains, lean proteins and nuts.
Simply being aware of the glycemic index will help you eat in a way that reduces the stress on your body. If you are going to have an ice cream treat, make sure you eat it at the end of a meal that contains low glycemic foods.
So this summer, have an occasional treat, but be sure it is occasional...seriously. ;-) Your body will thank you!
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Wishing you health & happiness,
May Anne xo
A common issue that I come across when coaching women is belly bloat and gas, caused by digestive issues. Aside from the inner discomfort, it can be downright embarrassing to walk around looking 5 months pregnant, when you’re not.
Click on the video above for tips to beat embarrassing belly bloat and gas.
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If you’re anything like me, you wish that you had a personal chef, who planned, cooked and shopped for your evening meals. It’s hard when you work all day and have family activities to keep you busy when you get home from work, on top of meal planning, cooking and shopping.
Listen to my vlog here for 5 Tips to Making Grocery Shopping Easier, allowing you to plan your meals and shop with ease, have nutritious meals and enjoy the evening with your family.
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Enjoy your day!
May Anne Jordens-LaFlamme is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and the owner of "Wellness with May Anne." She is truly a lover of all things Natural Health. Her passion is helping women to lose the weight for good, in a practical and sustainable way, so they can stop dieting, feel good about themselves and like what they see in the mirror.