When was the last time you thought about your blood glucose level?
Unless you have diabetes or your doctor said you're pre-diabetic, probably never. Right? There are several reasons why you should pay attention to your blood glucose level to ensure you are in a normal range.
In this article, we are going to dive deeper into understanding your blood glucose level, what that is, what constitutes a normal level, health complications from not managing your blood glucose level, as well as things you can do to help keep your levels normalized.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not meant to treat or diagnose any condition. It is recommended that you speak with your doctor if you feel you may have diabetes or are having issues managing your blood glucose level. Never use a supplement in place of a medical prescription or doctor's recommendation. Speak with your doctor if you have diabetes and are looking to include blood glucose management supplements into your regimen.
What is Blood Glucose?
If the terminology is a little confusing, you may have heard of something called blood sugar. Blood sugar and blood glucose are the same thing, just different terminology.
Blood glucose is a type of sugar that is found in your bloodstream. Glucose is a source of energy your body needs and uses to function properly. These sugars come from the food you eat, especially carbohydrates, which are broken down into glucose during digestion.
When you eat a meal, glucose is absorbed into your bloodstream, and your body produces a hormone called insulin, which helps your cells take up that glucose and use it for energy. This process helps keep your blood glucose level within a healthy range.
However, if you eat too many carbohydrates and your body doesn't produce enough insulin or can't use it effectively, your blood glucose levels can become too high, leading to a condition called hyperglycemia. Conversely, if you don't eat enough carbohydrates or your body produces too much insulin, your blood glucose levels can become too low, leading to a condition called hypoglycemia.
For many, acute levels of hyper- and hypoglycemia aren't a major concern unless your blood glucose level stays elevated or low for too long, which is where health issues may arise.
Should Non-Diabetics Pay Attention to Their Blood Glucose Level?
Unfortunately, many people don't concern themselves with things they cannot monitor by looking in the mirror. It's easy to pay attention to your weight when you can look in the mirror, see how your clothing fits, and hop on a scale.
When it comes to your blood glucose level, it can be challenging unless you have the means of testing your blood sugar level. Since most people have no way to test their blood sugar, it's the old ostrich sticking its head in the sand scenario where we don't concern ourselves regarding our blood glucose level until our health starts to fail.
Non-diabetics should pay attention to their blood glucose levels, as high blood sugar can be a sign of an underlying health issue or could lead to the development of type 2 diabetes.
Blood glucose levels are affected by factors such as diet, exercise, and genetics. Monitoring them can provide insight into one's overall health and help identify any potential issues before they become bigger problems.
Additionally, maintaining a healthy blood glucose level is essential for overall health and can help prevent chronic conditions. While non-diabetics may not need to monitor their blood glucose levels as frequently as those with diabetes, it is still important to get regular check-ups and to make healthy lifestyle choices that can help maintain a normalized blood glucose level.
What is Considered a Healthy and Normal Blood Glucose Level?
For non-diabetic adults, a fasting blood glucose level between 70-99 mg/dL (3.9-5.5 mmol/L) is considered "normal."
However, your blood glucose level can fluctuate throughout the day depending on what you eat and your activity level, so a one-time measurement may not be indicative of your overall health.
A healthy blood glucose level range after eating can be up to 140 mg/dL (7.8 mmol/L) within two hours of the start of a meal. After around two hours following a meal, your blood glucose level should return to normal.
For individuals with diabetes, target blood glucose levels may be different and should be discussed with your doctor.
It is also important to note that some factors can temporarily affect your blood glucose level, such as illness, stress, and certain medications, which is why (again) it's important to discuss any concerns with your doctor.
What Health Complications May You Experience if Blood Glucose Isn't Managed?
Keeping your blood glucose level within a healthy range is vital for your overall health and well-being. Having a high or low blood glucose level over time can lead to complications such as:
- Nerve damage
- Kidney damage
- Cardiovascular disease
- Stroke risk
- Foot damage
- Oral health issues
- Eye damage
- Hearing impairment
- Loss of consciousness
- And MORE!
How Can You Improve Your Blood Glucose Level?
The good news is that there are several things you can do to better manage your blood glucose level. Some of the ways you can do such are by:
1. Eating a balanced diet
A healthy and balanced diet that is rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins can help stabilize your blood sugar level.
2. Exercising regularly
Regular exercise can help improve insulin sensitivity, which can help regulate your blood sugar level (strive for a minimum of 150 minutes of exercise per week).
3. Managing stress
Stress can cause an increase in blood sugar levels, so it is important to practice stress management techniques such as meditation, yoga, or deep breathing exercises.
4. Taking medications as prescribed
If you have been prescribed medications for diabetes, it is important to take them as directed by your doctor.
5. Monitoring blood sugar levels
Regularly checking your blood sugar level can help you make necessary adjustments to your diet and lifestyle to better manage your blood glucose level.
6. Getting enough sleep
Lack of sleep can cause an increase in blood sugar levels, so it is crucial to get enough sleep each night (strive for a minimum of seven hours each night).
7. Quitting smoking
Smoking can cause an increase in blood sugar levels and make it harder to control your blood glucose level, so quitting smoking is key.
8. Using supplements
There are many supplements out on the market that can help naturally manage your blood glucose level. These supplements are not meant to be used as a replacement for diabetes medications such as insulin prescribed by your doctor. However, they can be used by individuals who wish to ensure their blood glucose level does not become too elevated to the point health issues may arise.
If you're looking for high-quality supplements that can help manage your blood glucose level, check out the various supplements we have at Simple Supplements. We have individual glucose support supplements as well as a blood sugar health bundle that stacks some of our most potent products. You can check them all out here!