Friday, 23 May 2014

Maintaining steady blood sugar reduces those extra pounds

Maintaining stable blood sugar levels has big implications for good health. Blood sugar alterations can cause mood swings, energy dips, fatigue, irritability, headaches, cravings for carbohydrates or coffee, lightheadedness, a shaky feeling if you skip a meal or the feeling that you need a nap after eating.

If you suffer from any of these symptoms, you might want to think about blood sugar and how much better you can feel when you avoid the highs and lows.

The fix for all of these symptoms is blood sugar regulation. Many hormones come into play, such as insulin. After eating a meal containing carbohydrate, our bodies break the this down into simple sugars that are then carried in the bloodstream. The pancreas responds by secreting insulin. Insulin's job is to travel through the bloodstream seeking sugar and transport it into cells for storage in the form of glucose. Glucose levels in the blood then come back down to the proper level.

When blood glucose is chronically high, damage can occur to the liver, pancreas, kidney, blood vessels, brain and nerves. Keeping blood sugars at a reasonable level is important for overall health.

The body's first choice when it goes to store sugar is to put it in the liver and the muscles. The problem arises when these storage sites become full. The body then needs to find another place to put it, storing sugar in the form of triglycerides. Some of the triglycerides remain in the blood, and some get stored as body fat.

The body uses carbohydrates for fuel first. If you eat a steady supply of food rich in carbohydrate, they are readily available to the body, and it doesn't have to take this out of storage when it needs some energy. You never get to tap into the fuel supply stored in the fat cells, so it remains on your body as fat.

Your body is not receiving adequate nutrition from a high-carbohydrate diet, so your body sends you a message to keep eating. What it really needs is the nutrition stored in vegetables and protein sources like meat, dairy and eggs. But if you keep feeding your body with carbohydrate when you feel hungry, you keep experiencing the energy peaks and valleys and lose an opportunity for better nutrition from foods that have more to offer. Also, you can't lose weight until you force your body into fat-burning mode by shifting to a diet that isn't so reliant on carbohydrates.

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