Do you know how important your A1C levels are? If you have type 1 or 2 diabetes, you should as high levels can be dangerous. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to easily manage your A1C:
You Are What You Eat
When the A1C is showing a consistently high number, doctors will attempt to control the blood sugar through dieting initially. A type 2 diabetic has control over their blood sugars through the food they eat.
One way to combat the sugar issues is by adding a large amount of both fruit and vegetables to the diet. These plant-based foods have a high number of antioxidants, which is known to promote overall better health, and they are high in fiber too. Fiber is a key nutrient that the body needs to manage blood sugars.
Increase Fiber and Decrease Sugar
Beans and legumes are the also superior for increasing your fiber intake. Recently, a study was completed at the Harvard University Health Services. If a person will eat just one-half of a cup of beans each day, it gives them more than one-third of their total daily fiber needs. Beans will help to stabilize blood sugar levels after a meal, and they slow down the digestion process.
Don’t Forget the Dairy Group
The dairy food group is also an essential part of keeping A1C levels in a normal range too. Those who need to stabilize blood sugars need to eat more fat-free milk and yogurt products. Not only are these products rich in vitamin D, but they can also help with weight loss and blood sugar management. Weight loss is one of the biggest contributing factors in reducing A1C levels and decreasing the likelihood of type 2 diabetes.
Lower Carbs – Increase Protein
Proteins are often increased when sugar levels are high. Cutting carbs is known to reduce sugar levels, but a person with fewer carbs should use protein to keep them full. Adding nuts and fish to the diet can make a major difference.
Fish like tuna, salmon, and even mackerel, have omega-3 fatty acids in them. These fatty acids lower insulin resistance and also regulate blood sugar levels. If a diabetic has high cholesterol levels too, nuts can also help with lowering that number.
Raiding the Spice Cabinet
Instead of reaching for sugar to flavor yogurt or other foods, why not use cinnamon? Cinnamon is always thought to be an additive for sweets and desserts, but this spice also has many health properties. Research has shown that if a person consumes just one-half of a teaspoon of cinnamon each day, it can improve their insulin resistance quickly. It tastes great on toast, oatmeal, ice cream, and yogurt.
Reduce High Fat Snacks
If you have a sweet tooth, it is going to be difficult to get that under control. Cut out or reduce potato chips, candy bars, cakes, and fried food consumption. These foods are known to make blood sugar levels peak, and they can impact your overall A1C levels. Try snacking on nuts, berries, cheese, avocados, and other healthy snacks. Fruits can help curb that sweet tooth, and they won’t raise blood sugar levels like other processed sugary foods.
It is important to keep in mind all the foods that help lower A1C levels. However, reducing sugar sodas and consuming water can also help. Don’t opt for that glass of juice when water is refreshing and thirst quenching. Never drink your calories — eat them!
Exercise Is Key
You should be performing at least 30 minutes of physical activity each day. It will not only lower your blood sugar levels, but it will improve your heart too. Your energy will increase, and weight will start to fall off when you exercise properly.
A doctor almost always encourages their diabetic patient to exercise regularly, because they will have better control over their sugar and their A1C level will be within a normal range.
Aerobic and Anaerobic Activity
Aerobic and anaerobic activity can go a long way to control one’s blood sugar levels. Weight training, otherwise known as anaerobic exercise, may cause a temporary spike in blood sugar levels, but they will normalize within minutes. However, aerobic exercise will lower them quickly. Walking and swimming are two popular types of aerobic exercises that prove to be sufficient in helping lower the A1C levels.
Your daily lifestyle may not allow for many exercises, but there are some things you can do to get moving. For instance, rather than taking the elevator at work, why not take the stairs? Instead of driving to the post office, why not walk? There are little modifications that you can make to increase your energy and lower your levels.
Learning to Manage Stress
Stress is a killer. However, what many people don’t know is that it can raise your blood sugar levels too. If your life is stressful, you need to learn how to do relaxation techniques to ease stress and anxiety. Stress can worsen diabetes and cause adverse effects on your health. Try yoga, meditation, or other calming methods to encourage a peaceful existence.
Making lifestyle changes is also important. Get rid of things that cause grief if possible. If you are overworked, then you need to cut back on your hours. Those who are stressed out have higher ratings of obesity, hypertension, and heart disease.
Stay Connected With Your Doctor
If your A1C levels are not where they need to be, it is important to keep your doctor in the loop. You must visit your health care provider as needed. Your doctor will track your A1C levels as well as provide you with management options.
No one likes to take medicine, but if you have been prescribed a medication, it is imperative that it is taken every day. Many people skip a few days or don’t take their prescriptions like they need to. In some cases, when the A1C level is out of whack, hospitalization may be needed.
The body’s blood sugar levels are nothing to mess with. This little number is a big indication that something is not right and you must take action. The great new is that your blood sugar levels, as well as your overall A1C scores, can be controlled by learning to eat healthy.