Wondering what blood sugar has to do with you, if you don't have diabetes? Keeping your blood sugar levels as steady as possiblenow may help you avoid getting diabetes later. "As you get older, your risk for type 2 diabetes goes up," says Alissa Rumsey, Registered Dietitian and Spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. "Since you can’t modify your age, it is important to take other steps to lower your risk, including maintaining a healthy weight, getting enough exercise, and balancing your diet to prevent spikes in blood sugar."
How High Blood Sugar Affects Your Body
Blood Sugar and Belly Fat
Regulator #1: Fiber-Rich Foods
- Beans & Legumes
- Whole Grains
- Nuts & Seeds
Regulator #2: Tart Cherries
People who have trouble sleeping may already be touting the virtues of tart cherries—studies have shown that drinking tart cherry juice improves sleep quality in older adults with insomnia. But people with diabetes will love this jewel-toned stone fruit for another reason: In a 2007 study, rats with a predisposition toward high cholesterol and pre-diabetes who ate tart cherries had "lower total cholesterol, lower blood sugar, less fat storage in the liver, lower oxidative stress, and increased production of a molecule that helps the body handle fat and sugar," according to an article from the University of Michigan, where the study was conducted.
"Tart cherries are full of anthocyanins," says Rumsey. "Some studies have shown a link between diets high in anthocyanins and improved insulin response. This means that your body is able to lower blood sugar more quickly after a meal.
Regulator #3: CinnamonIt's time to bring cinnamon out of kitchen-pantry obscurity. In a 2013meta-analysis of 10 randomized, controlled trials, daily consumption of cinnamon was linked to lower fasting blood glucose, as well as, lower total cholesterol and bad cholesterol, and higher good cholesterol, in people with type 2 diabetes. Whether cinnamon has a lasting effect on blood sugar remains to be seen. "More research needs to be done," says Rumsey. "It isn’t a magic bullet, but sprinkling cinnamon on your morning oatmeal or cereal certainly won’t hurt."
Regulator #4: Leafy Greens & Vegetables
3 Worst Foods for Blood Sugar Control
Read more from Grandparents.com:
12 Best and Worst Fast Food Kids' Meals
10 Diet Rules That Keep You Fat
Also on HuffPost: