“Unstable blood sugars are a modern day phenomenon.”
Unstable blood sugars are a modern day phenomenon. Sugar has infiltrated the modern world, sending our blood sugar levels on a rampant roller coaster ride.
You might experience sugar cravings or feeling ravenous not long after eating, brain fog or even have trouble losing weight. You might also notice around 3pm that your energy slumps and your hand reaches for chocolate or coffee get you through the afternoon. These are all classic signs that your blood sugar levels are unstable.
Let’s take a closer look at how blood sugar levels impact your hormones, energy and weight.
How do unbalanced blood sugars impact your hormones?
When your blood sugar levels are out of balance it means your body is using sugars and proteins as a fuel source, rather than fats. This gives your body quick, emergency energy. The body actually interprets high blood sugar levels as a stressor which stimulates the release of cortisol. When too much cortisol is released, your body is in flight or fight mode.
For women, the long-term effect of stress is often hormone imbalance. This is because our sex and stress hormones share the same precursors, which means when your body is constantly in flight or fight mode, it is prioritising survival and not reproduction.
The short of it is, if you can’t stabilise your blood sugar levels over a day, it's very difficult to stabilising your monthly hormones and cycle.
“If you can’t stabilise your blood sugar levels over a day, it's very difficult to stabilising your monthly hormones and cycle.”
How do our blood sugar levels impact energy?
Carbs break down to their simpler forms; glucose, fructose or lactose, proteins break down to amino acids and fats become lipids or essential fatty acids.
“Insulin lowers blood sugar levels by increasing the rate at which glucose is taken up by cells throughout the body, essentially turning into energy.”
Our clever bodies release the hormone insulin in response to this incoming food. Insulin lowers blood sugar levels by increasing the rate at which glucose is taken up by cells throughout the body, essentially turning into energy.
Carbs require a lot of insulin to deal with the glucose in the blood. Protein can also trigger a slight insulin response, while fats may only require a very small amount. If our body is producing too much insulin we find ourselves lacking in energy.
How do unbalanced blood sugars impact our weight?
If you eat food that your body can’t use or ‘find a home for’ in your cells or glycogen stores, it will be stored as body fat. Essentially when the body can’t find a home for it, this requires more insulin to be released. The more insulin your body needs to produce, the more body fat you will store.
“The more insulin your body needs to produce, the more body fat you will store.”
Here are some natural ways that you can balance your blood sugar levels:
1. Eating right for you
Eating right for you will naturally balance your blood sugar levels. It all boils down to nourishing your metabolism so that it can function optimally. Meaning it can produce insulin effectively - but not more than you need - and the rest of the time reverts back to burning stores of fat and glycogen within your body. Getting the right ratio of protein, fats and carbs for you is vital for hormonal harmony, energy and weight.
“Getting the right ratio of protein, fats and carbs for you is vital for hormonal harmony, energy and weight.”
To find out what right for you take the BePure Macronutrient Profile Test. Ultimately, the right diet for you is the one that keeps you the fullest the longest.
2. Avoid processed sugar
Eating foods high in sugar contributes to blood sugar spikes, hormone imbalances, gut issues and insulin resistance. This is because when you reach for that block of chocolate or sugary snack, you push your body to burn sugar for energy, rather than fat leading to an increase in insulin.
The combination of high sugar and high fat is like an insulin bomb. The sugar triggers an insulin response, while the fat rushes into your cells leaving you with extra fat to store. Cutting back on sugar can be hard at first, so we’ve put together these 6 tips to help you lower your sugar intake one step at a time.
3. Increasing protein
Protein is the most important macronutrient for stabilising blood sugar. It’s also vital as it provides you with important raw materials for body rebuilding.
This is especially important for Protein Types who will need to include good quality, animal protein at every meal. Carb types and mixed types will benefit from ensuring they have protein at breakfast to set themselves up for the day.
4. Increasing fat
Moving your diet away from sugars and processed carbohydrates towards eating a diet higher in healthy fats will provide much better long-term stable energy, unlike the sugary roller coaster you might be on.
Including good quality olive oil, avocado, coconut oil and nuts and seeds at every meal is a great idea.
Chocolate Craving Tip: Next time you reach out for a block of chocolate, try going for a dark chocolate block above 70% cocoa. Dark chocolate is lower in sugar, but is high fat making it a far better option than 30% milk chocolate. Think about it like this, whatever percentage is not cocoa, is sugar. This means you can still enjoy chocolate without a massive sugar hit. Try this Nourishing Chocolate Bites recipe to satisfy your chocolate cravings.
5. Eat leafy greens
As always, the star of the show is an abundance of leafy green vegetables! In one go they help with gut health, detoxification and provide B Vitamins and key nutrients for cellular energy production. B vitamins are especially important for glucose metabolism, so making sure you have enough of these in your diet will help keep your blood sugar levels stable.
“As always, the star of the show is an abundance of leafy green vegetables!”
Blood sugar, just like so many other part of your body, need to be balanced to you to live life with hormonal harmony, an abundance of energy and body confidence. Understanding how to balance your blood sugar levels is the most critical thing you can do for balancing your hormones long-term.
To understand your current hormone levels and how they could be impacting your health, a good place to start is to take the BePure Hormone Health Questionnaire.