Know Your Blood Sugar Level – 5 Best Reasons Why This Is So Important For A Diabetic

Are you a diabetic and do you check your blood sugar level regularly ? – Some people whom I have spoken to find it a hassle to do so, but is it really so difficult if it could SAVE YOUR LIFE ?

With the availability of the many forms of home blood glucose monitoring (HBGM) devices ( such as the Accucheck Glucometer )in the market today, it is very easy for a diabetic to perform their own test to make sure that their blood glucose level does not fall out of the “safe zone”. This is essential so that you could take preventive measures before complications of various form sets in (such as those that affects the heart and kidney.) In additional to Blood Sugar Self Test, we recommend that all diabetics should monitor the food they eat and to check for any wounds, cuts or injuries that they might have no their feet and hands everyday to make sure that they are clean and free from infection.

There are over 21 million Americans suffering from diabetes and 54 million people in the United States having pre-diabetes (a condition in which blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not enough to be diagnosed as diabetes.) with some totally unaware that they have the disease. This really says enough of the stance that we should take to combat diabetes and the first step is to KNOW YOUR BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL so that you could Control it and not letting diabetes take control of you !

Below are 5 Top Reasons why Self-testing is important and how you could control the disease :

Know Your Levels :

Check your blood sugar level frequently. This will let you know how much insulin you will need in order to keep your blood sugar level as close to normal as possible.
But How frequently should we test ? If your blood sugar levels are within a target range, you just need to test once before breakfast each day and occasionally at other times of the day. However for those who take insulin, you may need to check your blood sugar levels several times a day. The usual time to test your blood sugar level are : before bedtime, one to two hours after meals or a big snack, before you go through any Strenuous physical activity or exercise because this will lower your blood sugar and you may want to make sure that your blood sugar do not drop too low either.
Managing diabetes is all about balance. This include keeping a balance on the food we eat, medication we take and the right amount of exercises to keep your blood sugar levels within the targeted range. This is important because our bodies can no longer do it for us. Regular self-monitoring of blood glucose levels gives us a gauge on where our blood sugar levels are right at the moment and provide us sufficient time to act before complication sets in.

Good Control Keeps Complications at Bay:

Complication sets in if your blood sugar level remains consistently high and you do nothing about it. This includes complications to the eyes, kidneys and numbness to the hands and feet. These areas of your body have very small blood vessels and nerves which damages easily with the excess sugar circulating in the blood. The longer the blood sugar is high, the more severe the damage. Tight control of blood glucose levels by performing your own self-test regularly will therefore prevent, delay and minimise the risk of diabetes-related complications.

Assess The Effectiveness Of Your Medications:

Keeping your Blood Sugar Level in checks will also allow you to see how effective your medication or insulin is in controlling your glucose levels. If your medication is not effective in maintaining your blood sugar within the right range, it needs to be adjusted. Frequent self-testing will help you and your doctor to make the right choice in prescribing the right amount of doses and medications more accurately.

Minimizes The possibilities of Life-threatening Emergencies:

High blood sugar (Hyperglycemia) can occur during stress or when taking medications that affect the blood sugar. Testing can help you keep better watch on blood sugar so you can take the appropriate steps before it gets too high. Low blood sugar (Hypoglycemia) can happen if your blood sugar level drops too low. Our advise is, if you exercise, test your blood sugar level before, during or after exercise to avoid a dangerous dip in blood sugar. Do take note too that drinking alcohol can also lower your blood sugar and thus, monitor your level closely if you drink. It is better to do more then to be sorry after that.

Help Your Heart, Save Your Kidney !

People diagnosed with diabetes has an increased risk of heart and kidney diseases. This occurs slowly over time while your blood sugar remains consistently high.
Save your heart and kidney by keeping your blood sugar in control. You owe it to yourself to do this and you can still lead a healthy and meaningful life even if you have diabetes if you Control it well.

16 Tips for Controlling Blood Sugar

We can control type 2 diabetes by following a diet that is low in fat, low in sugar, low in salt, and high in fibre. It should consist mainly of plants and other foods with low glycemic index numbers, and be washed down with lots of water.

There are times however, no matter how successful we are at controlling our diabetes, that we experience ‘unexplainable’ swings (up or down) in our blood glucose levels.

The reason is simple: we all have slightly different reactions to various foods, ie some foods will increase (or decrease) blood glucose levels for some people while others will experience no effects, adverse or otherwise, from eating these foods.

To become adept at controlling our diabetes we need to know how we are affected by particular foodstuffs and drinks. We can only find this out by keeping track of our responses to them.

To help, here are some notes on various foodstuffs and drinks that may affect your blood glucose levels in various ways. You should check these tips for controlling blood sugar against your own experience of how these particular foods affect you.

Coffee

Your blood sugar may rise after you drink coffee, even sugarless black coffee, due to the caffeine it contains.

The caffeine in black and green tea or other drinks can have a similar effect on your blood glucose.

Strangely, there are other compounds in coffee that have beneficial effects on your health. These include antioxidants such as chlorogenic acids and melanoidins, as well as N-methylpyridinium, which can boost cell defence mechanisms.

So how does coffee, green tea etc affect your blood sugar levels?

Refined bread

The refined flour in white bread gives it a high value on the glycemic index, in excess of 70. Thus it is digested quickly and produces a rapid high spike in the level of your blood glucose.

So you should eat bread made from 100% wholemeal flour.

Bagels are often touted as a healthy alternative to white bread. Not so, if you are diabetic. Bagels contain more carbs and calories than a slice of bread… even the wholemeal ones.

What is the best bread for you?

Sugar-free foods

These seem like a safe bet when you are diabetic. But this is not always true.

Many sugar-free foods contain oodles of fat added to impart flavour. If you are a type 2 diabetic you need to rid your diet of fat as far as possible in order to unblock the glucose receptors in your muscle cells.

Sugar-free foods may also contain a lot of starch, the main form of carbohydrates. You can only find out by checking the labels.

Sugar alcohols, such as sorbitol and xylitol, are often added to sugar-free foodstuffs to make them taste sweet. While these compounds have fewer carbs than sucrose (table sugar), they may still have enough to boost your blood glucose levels. Again, check the labels.

Eating out

Going to restaurants always presents problems for diabetics. Trying to decide whether a dish on a menu meets your low-fat, low-sugar dietary criteria can be difficult.

Food based on Chinese, Japanese and other Eastern cuisines is, in the main, quite healthy.

However the white rice served in these restaurants contains lots of carbohydrates. It also has a relatively high GI value which means that the carbs are digested quickly and thus can give rise to a rapid spike in blood glucose levels.

Some Eastern foods also have a high fat content. You need to avoid these foods.

You need to be cautious when eating out in other Western restaurants. Pizza, French fries and other foods contain lots of carbs and fat.

No matter where you eat, you should note the foods you have eaten. You should then check your blood sugar about 2 hours later. After a while a pattern will emerge and you’ll be able to see which foods have an adverse affect on your glucose levels and what foods are safe to eat on a night out.

Colds and flues

Your blood glucose levels will rise when your body is trying to fight off an illness. There’s not a lot you can do about that except to make sure you stay hydrated by drinking lots of water.

Note that some medicines can increase your blood sugar levels even further. These include some antibiotics and decongestants for clearing your sinuses. For example, decongestants containing pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine are known to raise blood sugar.

Cold medicines also sometimes have a little sugar or alcohol in them, so look for products that do not contain these ingredients. Antihistamines, however, don’t cause a problem with blood glucose.

You should ask your pharmacist about the possible effects of over-the-counter meds before you buy them. You should, of course, attend your doctor if an illness persists for more than two days or so.

Other medications

Several medicines in common use can have an adverse affect on blood sugar levels.

Corticosteroids, such as prednisone, are used to treat rashes, arthritis, asthma, and many other conditions. They are known to boost your blood glucose levels.

Diuretics (or water pills) that help regulate high blood pressure can also affect blood sugar levels adversely.

Antidepressants can go either way… some raise, others tend to lower blood glucose.

Birth control pills containing oestrogen can affect the way a woman’s body handles insulin. Birth control injections and implants are known to raise blood sugar levels. However oral contraceptives are considered safe for women with diabetes. A combination pill containing norgestimate and synthetic oestrogen is recommended, though your doctor’s advice should always be sought.

Female hormones

When a woman’s hormones change during her monthly menstruation, her blood sugar levels change also. During menopause, the hormonal changes can make blood glucose even harder to control.

You should keep a monthly record of your blood glucose levels to get a better idea of how they are affected by your menstrual cycle.

Stress

When you are stressed your body releases hormones, such as cortisol, that raise your blood glucose levels… no matter what the source (work, domestic, financial etc) of that stress.

Blood sugar rises due to stress are more common among people with type 2 diabetes than more healthy persons.

You need to change the things that are stressing you if that is possible.

If not, you should train yourself to relax using deep breathing and physical exercise.

Dried fruit

Fresh fruit is always a healthy choice for a snack.

Dried fruit is just as healthy. However, as the water has been taken out, it will contain on average about three times the amount of natural sugars and carbs by volume as fresh fruit.

For example, one tablespoon of raisins, dried cranberries or dried cherries will have the same amount of carbs as three tablespoons of these fruits.

Thus you should only eat a third of what you would eat if the fruit were fresh.

Probiotics

Probiotics are foods such as fresh yoghurt that contain healthy bacteria. These can improve your digestion. They may also help you control your blood glucose levels.

But be cautious. Some yogurts contain added sugar and fruit. You need to check the labels and note the amount of carbohydrates. Your best bet is plain or light yogurt without added sugar.

Vegan diet

Several studies have found that people with type 2 diabetes who switch to a vegan (all vegetable-based) diet have better blood glucose control. Most are able to reduce or give up their medications. A few have actually reversed their diabetes.

It can be difficult at first but if you follow a pure vegan diet you are guaranteed to experience very positive effects on your diabetes.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is definitely one drug that helps reduce blood glucose levels two hours after a meal. It is also a handy way to add flavour to dishes without adding salt, carbs or calories.

In this writer’s experience a sprinkling of this spice on his oatmeal in the morning is worth between 0.3 and 0.5mml/L (5.4 to 9mg/L). This is a significant drop (almost 7% on average) when your are aiming for a target of 6mml/L (108mg/L) two hours after breakfast.

Exercise

Physical activity will boost your overall health. It will also contribute to keeping your blood glucose levels under control.

However, as a diabetic, you need to tailor your exercise to suit your needs. If you work out hard enough to sweat and raise your heartbeat, your blood sugar may increase rapidly and then drop.

In fact, intense or endurance-type exercise can reduce you blood glucose to a dangerously low level and keep it down for 24 hours or more afterwards. A snack before you begin could help prevent it dropping too low.

You should check your blood sugar before, during, and after you exercise.

That said, moderate exercise can have a very positive effect on blood glucose levels. For example, cleaning the house or mowing the lawn can help lower your blood sugar.

There are many ways in which you can boost the amount of exercise you do. For example, walk up stairs instead of taking the elevator or park on the far side of the parking lot near your office or at your local supermarket. Small bits of moderate exercise all add up.

Sports drinks

The fact of the matter is that all you need after a workout is plain old H2O. Indeed unless you have had an extreme workout, plain water will replenish your fluids adequately.

Sports drinks are usually full of sugars, calories and carbs, so if you must imbibe one, read the label carefully. Some of them contain as much sugar as a soda drink.

Alcohol

Alcohol, the world’s most beloved recreational drug, is low in nutrients but high in empty calories, ie calories that have little or no nutritional value.

Alcoholic drinks contain plenty of carbohydrates so drinking moderate amounts of alcohol will cause your blood sugar to go up. This initial rise soon wears off and the level of glucose in your blood starts falling.

If you continue drinking then your blood glucose can continue to fall until you end up with hypoglycaemia (dangerously low blood sugar levels, aka a hypo). Even if you don’t experience a hypo, your glucose level can stay too low for up to 12 hours after drinking.

It’s best to take your booze with food and to check your blood sugar two hours afterwards.

Heat

Heat makes your blood sugar harder to control.

You are better off inside with the AC on when it’s hot outdoors. You should drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration, and test your glucose levels from time to time.

High temperatures can also affect your medications, glucose meter and test strips, so don’t leave them locked in a hot car.

New Help To Balance Your Blood Sugar

DIABETES DEFENSE Fights Elevated Blood Sugar and Visceral Fat

Our bodies have a desperate need for sugar (glucose), as it is the fuel that gives our cells the energy they need to keep us alive. Without glucose we cannot exist. Our bodies will find a way to reduce our bodily components, whether muscle or fat, into a usable supply of fuel.

Problems begin to occur when the ongoing supply of simple sugars in the blood stream (and our body’s ability to usher it into the cells with insulin) is disrupted. There are numerous reasons for this to occur, but the bottom line is that this is when blood sugar levels begin to rise and damage begins to occur within the body.

Scientists as well as physicians have been pursuing the elusive goal of trying to find a substance, or blend of substances that could solve the rising glucose issue. Their goal has been to help avoid the damage that is done to the body by the sugar, and at some point, the insulin. Those with continued rising glucose levels end up as diabetics, and most people are aware of the high disease rate of cancer, heart attack, stroke, blindness, and amputation that accompanies this disease. What many people are not aware of is that damage occurs to the body at such low levels of rising glucose. This is why it is absolutely critical to maintain a balanced blood sugar level.

It appears that science may have found a solution thanks to a product made from the Hops flower. The U.S. government has recognized this discovery with a patent. The ingredient from hops is actually called isohumulone and it is the only ingredient in Diabetes Defense. The product works by affecting the two genes responsible for how insulin works and how fat is metabolized. After seven (7) Clinical Studies over seven (7) years, the conclusions of the scientific studies state that this product reduces glucose levels, triglyceride levels, and visceral fat. There were no noted side effects in any of the studies. This discovery is nothing short of amazing considering it required just one small pill a day to accomplish this in the studies.

Harmful Effects of Elevated Blood Sugar

First let’s talk about the symptoms that are annoying, but not yet life threatening:

  • Memory lapses Mood Swings Fading Eyesight
  • Lack of Energy Mental Fuzziness Inability to Lose Weight
  • Food Cravings

You should consider the above symptoms as early warning signs and have your blood sugar tested. You have to maintain a healthy glucose level to remain healthy over your lifetime. We will discuss the proper blood tests later.

Increase Risk of Heart Attack

According to studies, glucose levels that rose above 4.6% in the hemoglobin HA1c test showed a direct correlation to an increase in heart attacks. As your levels rise above this, so does your risks of heart attack. This number corresponds to a fasting blood sugar level of only 86, or a one-hour test after meals of 140mg/dl. These numbers are typically said to be OK by your doctor; however, studies indicate damage is occurring at blood sugar levels much lower than previously believed.

Blood sugar is a better indicator of potential heart attack then total cholesterol levels. Only about 50% of people with high cholesterol have a heart attack. This means people with no indication of high cholesterol, have as many heart attacks as people with high cholesterol. Blood sugar on the other hand, shows the risk increases in direct proportion to how high your glucose rises over 4.6% in the HA1c test. This test shows how much glucose attaches to your blood cells over a three-month time frame, which indicates how often you have elevated glucose during that time frame. High blood sugar causes triglycerides to be stored in heart tissue which is why it is such a perfect indicator. Unfortunately, these indicators are what doctors are currently treating as NORMAL levels. This is a direct conflict to all the studies showing the opposite. The education has not yet made it to mainstream health professionals, because most of the education comes from the pharmaceutical industry. Bottom line is you need to balance your blood sugar.

Increase Risk of Developing Diabetes

Did you know that a 55-year old woman whose tests range in the upper levels of normal blood sugar testing, is 13 times more likely to become a diabetic than have breast cancer, and 9 times more likely than having heart disease? And yet, even with these huge risk factors, not enough attention is paid to glucose. And once you have diabetes, much of the damage has already been done – and that is why there is so much heart disease, blindness, neuropathy, and amputations occurring after the diagnosis. You CAN avoid this life-threatening disease now by simply making the wise choice to deal with your blood sugar when it may be only slightly elevated, rather than waiting until you are diagnosed as Pre-Diabetic or Diabetic.

Damage to Your Nerves

Recent studies have concluded that damage to your small nerves occur when blood sugar is elevated above 100 for just two hours. Again, 100 is typically considered normal for glucose by most healthcare professionals. Nonetheless, slight damage occurs every time your glucose elevates to 100 or above. And the higher the levels and the longer they stay elevated, the greater the damage. If you notice some tingling in your fingers or toes, this can be an early sign of nerve damage that may be related to blood sugar. The protective myelin sheath is actually damaged by the sugar, especially in the lower limbs. This damage occurs before you become a diabetic, and with continued high levels, becomes the reason that diabetics must check their feet every day as they lose feeling. It is the infections and problems with the damaged nerves that ultimately lead to amputation. Worldwide, someoneis having an arm or leg amputated every six minutes due to complications from rising blood sugar and the ineffectiveness of insulin to manage it.

Damage to your Eyes

One of the many problems that occur as blood sugar rises and stays above 100 for a few hours is that the small capillaries which supply your eyes, organs, and skin, start to narrow to prevent damage to your body from the elevated glucose. The problem with this defensive body strategy is that due to the decreased blood flow, it starts to limit how much oxygen and nutrients get to those body parts. Damage now occurs over time, especially to the very smallest areas of capillaries, such as in the eyes. Fading eyesight is an early warning sign to you to balance your glucose before more serious sight issues, including blindness, can occur.

Damage to Your Beta Cells

Your Beta cells are the specialized cells that are located in the pancreas, and are responsible for producing the hormone insulin, which is how the body shuttles glucose into your cells. As your blood sugar rises continuously and stays elevated, some of these Beta cells become damaged, die, or are no longer able to produce insulin. In early stages of rising blood sugar, this is not a problem as you have plenty of cells to produce enough insulin. However, over time if you do not learn to balance and maintain those levels, at some point your body will be unable to balance it at all, and damage will begin to occur much more rapidly. At that point, it is only three years until you are classified as a diabetic. As much as 40% of your Beta cells can be destroyed in as little as two years if you fail to manage your glucose. Unfortunately, our diets of simple carbohydrates and sugars must accept a large part of the blame, although there can be other factors such as toxins, genetics, and your immune system.

Hardening of the Arteries

Studies have confirmed that 95% of people who have diabetes have hardening of the arteries, and a thickening of the carotid artery, which occurs after meals, due to continued elevated blood sugar levels. 65% of diabetics die from some type of heart disease. Clearly, this damage starts occurring well before you are diagnosed as being diabetic.

Wound Healing and Aging

No one wants to have their skin age prematurely. However, this is exactly what occurs when you do not maintain low glucose levels, preferably in the 80 range. Sugar sticks to proteins that are required for construction of quality collagen. Collagen is required for the repair and building of new cells. Poor cell repair and construction ends up showing as saggy skin and loss of elasticity. As the capillaries become restricted, damage is done to the arteries and nerves, preventing nutrients from getting to damaged skin or wounds. Infections are often the result, as is a very slow healing process.

Weight Gain

While many think it is weight issues that cause diabetes, it may actually be the rising blood sugar levels that cause obesity. Yes, eating too much food will cause weight gain, but the weight alone does not cause diabetes. If that were true then everyone that is obese would be a diabetic, and that is not the case. While four out of five obese people are diabetic, it is still believed that the elevated glucose is what caused the initial problem. Weight really starts to pile on when insulin no longer functions properly due to the cascading factors of rising blood sugar. Slight weight gain, however, could be a sign/symptom that you are possibly flooding your body with too much sugar and/or carbohydrates. High visceral (midsection) fat it is a good indicator of potential heart disease.

Kidneys and Internal Organs

When blood flow is constricted resulting in cell death and impaired function, renal failure and damage to other internal organs becomes a problem. When the filtering organs (such as kidneys and liver) are damaged, the body is unable to keep up with all of the purification processes it must perform. This in turn causes toxic build-up and other dangerous issues in the body, and a cascading effect takes place.

Blood Sugar Problems Are Epidemic

In the United States alone, there are estimated to be nearly 70 million people that are Prediabetic, and millions more that have rising glucose levels. There are already nearly 27 million Diabetics in this country. One out of three of our children is expected to become diabetic; you can already see it occurring in the classrooms.

75% of the population over age sixty has glucose problems and need to get on a program – or face the devastation of uncontrolled blood sugar.

Worldwide, the outlook is even more daunting. Over 300 million people have diabetes, and possibly 900 million others have a blood sugar problem that needs attention.

You Can Avoid Rising This Health Issue

For years, we have tried to convince people to eat a better diet, exercise, drink water, and reduce stress. Some are able to do it, and some still need help. If you are unable to get your fasting blood sugar down to 80, or your two-hour glucose test under 140 at one-hour, then you must do something to change your future. Diabetes Defenseis the only patented product with seven clinical studies that will not only help balance glucose, but is proven to reduce Triglycerides and visceral (midsection) fat. Don’t settle for a life of pain, misery or early death. Diabetics live fifteen years less than average, and spend three times as much on medical care as people without the illness. Change your lifestyle and consider the power of Diabetes Defense. There is just nothing as affordable or simple. It only requires one small pill a day to take back control.