Whether it’s flu season or there’s a cold going around the office, there are ways to keep your immune system strong by eating certain foods. You don’t need to buy...
We all know what it feels like to be “hangry.” Even if you don’t suffer from one of the several conditions that make it difficult to manage blood sugar levels like Diabetes, Prediabetes, PCOS and Metabolic Syndrome, what and how you eat can contribute to dips in blood sugar that directly affect your mood, concentration, and energy levels.
Follow these tips to be at your best whether you’re at work, school, or home:
- Eat breakfast- eating in the morning helps replenish liver glycogen and steadies blood sugar levels. Try Bagel Gone Bananas or a Wake Up Smoothie if you need some breakfast inspiration. Both contain a healthy dose of carbohydrates, fat, protein, and fiber to balance your blood sugar levels. If you have more time, Crispy Potatoes with Green Beans and Eggs is a delicious option.
- Aim to eat 4-5 meals and snacks per day and don’t skip meals- your body needs fuel to function and carbohydrates to fuel your brain and muscles. Eat a variety of foods from all food groups; fruit, vegetables, whole grains, protein foods, dairy, and healthy fats. When choosing fats, aim for vegetable sources like Olive and Canola oil, walnuts, avocados, and fatty fish like Salmon. Curried Chicken Pitas or a classic Tuna Melt are great quick lunch options.
- Increase your fiber intake- fiber slows down how quickly food is broken down and absorbed in the body, so it helps to keep blood sugar levels in balance. Try Baked Sweet Potato with Black Bean Chili or Whole Wheat Vegetable Lasagna for fiber packed meals.
- Include protein at all meals and snacks; for example peanut butter, lean meats, tofu, beans, lentils, fish, and low-fat dairy products. Apple and Peanut Butter and Cherries with Ricotta and Toasted Almonds are snacks loaded with protein.
- Drink healthy beverages like water, low-fat dairy and low-fat fortified soy beverages. Avoid fast spikes in blood sugar by staying away from sugar laden drinks. If you need a boost of flavor and nutrition, try this Pineapple Pina Colada.
- Eat more dark, green, leafy vegetables such as spinach, collard greens, kale, mustard greens, and salad greens. These nutritional powerhouse foods are chock full of vitamin C, vitamin A, antioxidants, fiber, vitamin K, folate, magnesium, potassium, iron, and calcium. These nutrients act as antioxidants that can help regulate blood sugar. Leafy greens are also nutrient dense, meaning, they are loaded with nutrition for just 10-25 calories per half cup. Get more leafy greens at breakfast with this Baked Egg with Spinach and amp up your lunch or dinner with Kale and Black Bean Rice Bowl.
- Consume more whole grains. Foods like oatmeal, barley, oats, quinoa, Teff, Amaranth, and couscous contain Beta-glucan soluble fiber that helps slow the absorption of glucose, keeping blood sugar levels stable, providing sustained energy throughout the day. Try Salmon with Toasted Couscous that pairs whole grains with healthy fats and protein or Date and Pine Nut Oatmeal for a delicious whole grain breakfast.