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Strategies for Maintaining Normal Blood Glucose Levels
For people with diabetes, there are times when you feel like you’re on a boat. It can be smooth sailing for a while, with normal blood glucose level readings at each finger prick test.
Then suddenly, it can feel as though you’ve hit some choppy water as blood glucose levels begin to rise too high or crash too low.
Whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, eating well and counting carbs are some of the easiest ways to help promote normal glucose levels. Taking insulin as prescribed, if that’s part of your diabetes management plan, is also helpful, since insulin is the hormone that gets the sugars out of the blood and into the cells to use as energy.
If you haven’t already, meet with your dietitian or diabetes educator to map out a plan for how many carbs to eat at each meal and snack, and how to choose smart carbs such as those higher in fiber.
Even if you carb count like a pro, other sometimes surprising factors can upset your otherwise normal glucose levels. Not getting enough sleep, drinking alcohol, going through menopause and starting new medications can wreak havoc on hormones, including insulin.
Maintaining normal blood glucose levels requires some vigilance. You need to check your blood sugars regularly, throughout the day, and consider keeping a log to note when they are high and what might’ve led to that.
If you have diabetes, normal blood glucose levels after eating should be less than 180 mg/dL. If your blood glucose meter reading is above 180 mg/dL, it’s time to steer that ship toward calmer waters!
To help maintain normal blood sugar levels, make sure you’re following these seven smart strategies:
If the blood glucose reading you just took is higher than it ought to be, there are some things you can do immediately to help bring you back to normal glucose levels. Before you try any of these, though, be sure you and your doctor agree on these courses of action, and when you might need to get outside medical help.
Keeping your blood glucose levels within normal limits isn’t just good for diabetes management, it also helps reduce your risk for other serious complications. If your blood sugar levels get too high, it can lead to diabetic ketoacidosis, a serious and sometimes deadly condition.
Just think – sailing a ship on a steady course is not only safer, it makes for a more delightful ride!
Talk to your healthcare provider for questions or concerns about any diet or lifestyle changes and to find a plan that's right for you.
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