Blood sugar lowering foods can be consumed for someone who has diabetes. Their body can’t produce enough insulin or can’t use insulin properly so glucose accumulates in the blood.
High glucose levels can cause a variety of symptoms, from fatigue to heart disease.
One way to control blood sugar is to eat healthy foods. Generally, foods and drinks that your body absorbs slowly are best because they don’t cause spikes or drops in blood sugar.
The glycemic index is a benchmark for measuring the effect of certain foods on blood sugar levels. People who want to control their blood sugar levels should naturally choose foods with a low or moderate GI score.
One can also pair foods with low and high GI scores to ensure that they are balanced.
1. Whole wheat bread
Many types of bread are high in carbohydrates and quickly raise blood sugar levels. As a result, there are many types of bread that must be avoided. However, 100 percent ground whole wheat bread has a low GI score of 55 or less on the GI scale.
Processing removes the fibrous outer shell from grains and cereals to reduce fiber content. Though fiber can slow down digestion and help stabilize blood sugar levels.
In a 2014 study, researchers reported that wheat caused a low initial glycemic response in mice. They also found that this ancient type of wheat increased glucose metabolism.
2. Expand the fruit
With the exception of pineapples and melons, most fruits have a glycemic index score of 55 or less. This is because most fruits contain lots of water and fiber to balance their natural sugar which is fructose.
However, when the fruit ripens, the GI score increases. Fruit juice also has a very high GI score because juicing requires removing the fibrous skin and seeds.
A large 2013 study found that people who ate whole fruit, especially blueberries, grapes and apples had a significantly lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
3. Sweet potatoes
Ordinary potato has a high GI score, but sweet potato has a low score and is high in nutrients.
Several studies have shown that sweet potato flesh contains more fiber than the skin, suggesting that whole vegetables can be beneficial for diabetics.
Oats have a GI of 55 or lower, so they are less likely to cause spikes and drops in blood sugar levels. Oats also contain B-glucans which can help reduce glucose and insulin responses after meals.
In addition, it can also increase insulin sensitivity and also reduce blood lipids (fat).
Nuts are very high in dietary fiber and have a GI score of 55 or less. Nuts also contain high levels of vegetable protein, unsaturated fatty acids and several other nutrients such as vitamins, antioxidants, phytochemicals such as flavonoids to minerals such as magnesium and potassium.
A 2014 systemic review concluded that eating legumes may benefit diabetics.
Garlic is a popular herb in traditional medicine for diabetes.
Garlic contains compounds that can help reduce blood sugar by increasing insulin sensitivity and secretion.
In a 2013 study, 60 people with type 2 diabetes and obesity took metformin alone or a combination of metformin and garlic twice daily after meals for 12 weeks. People who took metformin and garlic experienced a more significant reduction in fasting and post-meal blood sugar levels.
It is common to eat raw garlic by adding it to salads or using it in cooked food.
Foods to lower blood sugar naturally with fresh fish. A 2014 study included data taken from 33,704 Norwegian women over a 5-year period. Researchers found that eating 75-100 grams of cod, saithe haddock or pollock every day can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
But the researchers weren’t sure whether the reduced risk was a direct result of eating fish or whether other healthy lifestyle factors, such as exercise, could have influenced the findings.
Eating plain yogurt every day can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. Plain yogurt is generally a low GI food. Most unsweetened yogurts have a GI score of 50 or less.
It is best to avoid sweetened or flavored yogurt which usually contains too much sugar for people looking to lower their blood sugar levels. Greek yogurt can be a healthy alternative.
9. Consume enough water
Drinking enough water can help keep blood sugar levels within healthy limits.
Apart from preventing dehydration, drinking enough water can also help the kidneys get rid of excess sugar through urine.
One observational study showed that those who drank more water had a lower risk of developing high blood sugar levels.
Drinking water regularly can help rehydrate blood, lower blood sugar levels and can reduce the risk of diabetes.
10. Foods high in chromoime and magnesium
High blood sugar levels and diabetes have also been linked to micronutrient deficiencies. Chromium is involved in the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats. It also helps regulate blood sugar levels. Chromium deficiency can lead to carbohydrate intolerance.
Several studies on diabetics have shown that cormium has benefits for long-term blood sugar management. Foods high in chromium include meat, fruit, vegetables and whole grains.
Magnesium has also been shown to benefit blood sugar levels, while magnesium deficiency has been linked to a higher risk of diabetes.
Research has linked individuals with the highest magnesium intake to a 47 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Blood sugar-lowering or diabetes foods that contain magnesium include dark leafy vegetables, tuna, bananas, avocados and legumes.