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Employee Wellness: Better Blood Sugar Balance


Low glycemic food with blood sugar testing and lancing devices for diabetics. Meal chart and foods below 55 on the GI index.  Foods with high in antioxidants, omega 3, protein, anthocyanins, vitamins & minerals are pictured.

Maintaining blood sugar balance throughout the day is important for stable energy levels, mood, and brain fuel. Dysregulated blood sugar levels can lead to irritability, sugar cravings, brain fog, poor sleep, weight gain, and diabetes. And for those with diabetes, balancing blood sugar levels is especially important. No matter how long you have been dealing with diabetes, managing blood sugar at work can be difficult. Many factors impact blood sugars including food, exercise, medication, stress, hormones, hydration, illness, and sleep, making it difficult to know where to start. Start by focusing on one factor at a time. For the area of nutrition, these four tips can help.


Tips for Better Blood Sugars


1. Planning and Packing Food

Pick a consistent day to plan what you will eat at work. Choose the food items, make a grocery list, go shopping, and prepare and pack the food. You can even set a reminder on your phone to bring the food to work. Having food with you can prevent skipping meals, which supports more stable blood sugars.


2. Eating at Regular Intervals

Missing meals and snacks can lead to more shifts in blood sugar levels. Try to eat at consistent times, about every 3-4 hours, throughout the day. Consider talking to your doctor if you are having difficulty eating at work. They may give you a doctor’s note explaining your need to take quick breaks to eat throughout the day.


3. Balancing Snacks

Try to balance the food groups in your meals and snacks using the plate method as a guide. For example, your plate or bowl could consist of 1/4 carbohydrates, 1/4 protein, and 1/2 vegetables. Some carbohydrate-rich foods are fruit, milk, yogurt, crackers, bread, corn, pasta, rice, and tortillas. For meals and snacks containing these foods, consider what protein, fiber, or fat you could add for better balance and variety. By balancing carbohydrates and protein and pairing them with fiber-filled foods like vegetables you can achieve better blood sugar balance.


Snacks should contain two different food groups to help balance blood sugar levels. Some balanced snack examples are whole grain crackers and cheese, an apple and peanut butter, cheese and fruit, greek yogurt and a granola bar, a hard-boiled egg and grapes, and a protein shake and nuts. Thinking of snacks as mini-meals can be helpful.


4. Including More Water, More Veggies, and More Fiber

Focus on what you can do more of at work. Can you drink a little more water or eat a little more veggies? Fiber helps keep your blood sugars more stable and vegetables are filled with fiber! Throw a bag of baby carrots in your lunch bag or add some baby bell peppers to your snack. Proper hydration can also help improve blood sugars, too. Pack a water bottle and refill it throughout the day. Drinking from a water bottle with a straw can encourage more water drinking, too. If you find you have to use the restroom more, the extra walking can also support better blood sugars because movement helps get blood sugar into your cells. It is more positive to think about what you can “add-in” to your day than to focus on what foods you think you should eliminate or avoid. Adding-in more more water, vegetables, and fiber is a gentle approach to balancing blood sugars.


Seek Support

If you need extra help balancing your blood sugars, reach out to your medical team. Ask your doctor about Diabetes Self-Management Education Classes (DSME). DSME classes provide skills for managing diabetes, provide nutrition education, and address factors that affect blood sugars like medications, exercise, illness, stress, and sleep. A Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) can provide you with nutrition therapy, and health coaches can help reinforce habit change.


Diabetes is a complex condition, but with patience and perseverance, managing blood sugar is possible. Nutrition can get you started with better blood sugar management.


Learn more about Wellness Workdays and our wellness program offerings by downloading our brochure.


Written by Larissa DePasqua, Wellness Workdays Dietetic Intern


Sources:

1. Mayoclinic

2. Novo Nordisk

3. American Diabetes Association

5. CDC

6. ADCES


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1 Comment


hermanlamb911
Apr 09

Start by focusing on one factor at a time. For the area of nutrition, these four tips can help. geometry dash lite

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