This article originally appeared on Live in the Now.
The human body did not evolve to metabolize the large amount of carbohydrate calories consumed by even the most health-conscious individuals today. High levels of blood glucose are a significant underlying factor that leads to the development and proliferation of many age-related diseases. Diabetes, heart disease, stroke, cancer and dementia are all accelerated by slowly increasing fasting and post-meal blood sugar levels that cause needless suffering and death for millions of unsuspecting people each year. However, taking the necessary dietary and nutritional steps today can prevent the current explosion of new diabetes cases in the future and lengthen natural lifespan.
Redefining Healthy Blood Sugar
Normal blood sugar levels have been continually revised downward over the past several decades as it’s determined that current levels cause cellular damage. Presently, a fasting reading over 126 mg/dl repeated twice is considered cause for a diagnosis of diabetes.
A reading of 110 mg/dl or above is classified as impaired by the American Diabetes Association. Information published in the journal Diabetes Care indicates that a fasting blood glucose level above the range of 70-85 mg/dl dramatically increases the risk of developing heart disease and death from a heart attack. The researchers conclude, “fasting blood glucose values in the upper normal range appears to be an important independent predictor of cardiovascular death in non-diabetic apparently healthy men.“
Excess Sugar Damages Vessel Walls, Leads to Insulin Resistance
Excess blood sugar triggers a cascade of potentially deadly processes that contribute to diabetes, hardening of the coronary arteries and neuropathic complications. High glucose levels from dietary sugar and excess carbohydrate consumption provokes the release of chemical cytokines that promote arterial wall inflammation, endothelial dysfunction and atherosclerosis. Eventually the pancreas is no longer able to secrete enough insulin, and the insulin that is produced is no longer able to efficiently escort sugar to the cells and muscles.
Naturally Lowering Blood Sugar with Diet
Nutrients such as cinnamon and vinegar taken before eating can help lower post meal blood sugar spikes and can complement proper diet. The most dependable way to naturally cut blood sugar levels is to dramatically lower calories from carbohydrate sources at each meal. Totally eliminate all processed and refined carb foods including bread, pasta, corn and rice.
Depending on carbohydrate sensitivity, some individuals may also need to limit fruits and starchy vegetables as well. The results of a study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition shows that a diet rich in monounsaturated fats such as the Mediterranean diet improves post meal blood glucose levels and moderates healthy insulin response.
High-Protein, Low-Carbohydrate Breakfast Regulates Blood Sugar
The result of research published in the journal Diabetes Care demonstrates the importance of including protein as part of a low carbohydrate breakfast. Participants were given a high protein food shortly before eating a low carb breakfast. Post-meal blood sugar readings were 40% lower than the same meal eaten without the protein source in advance. This underscores the importance of combining proteins and monounsaturated fat sources with each meal to slow down the release of potentially damaging sugar surges.
The best way to prevent out-of-control blood sugar spikes is to monitor your blood glucose at 1- and 2-hour intervals after eating. Avoid any reading above 140 mg/dl as tissue damage has been observed with sustained levels above this threshold. Research provides extensive evidence that controlling fasting and post-meal blood sugar results in lower disease risk and lengthened lifespan.