Blood sugar, also known as blood glucose, comes from the
food we eat. The body accumulates the blood sugar by digesting some food we eat
into a sugar that circulates in the bloodstream which is then used for energy.
The sugar that isn’t needed to fuel the body will be stored in the cells right
away for later use. Normal blood sugar levels are less than 100mg/dl having
fasted for atleast 8 hours and they are less than 140mg/dl two hours
after eating. 

Food has a direct effect on your blood sugar level. Some
food raise the blood sugar level more than others and one of the important way
of managing diabetes is knowing what and how much to eat, develop a eating plan
that aims to control your blood sugar level as well. When you eat the wrong
foods, it can raise your blood sugar and insulin levels and promote inflammation,
increasing your risk of disease. 

Having too much sugar in your blood can be harmful. The more
you know about how eating affects blood sugar, the better you can protect
yourself against diabetes. If you are diagnosed of diabetes already, this will
help you know how the food you eat affects your blood sugar. 

What happens to the food you eat? 

Your body breaks down the food you eat and absorbs the food
into different parts that can be nourishing to the body. These parts are 

  • Carbohydrates 
  • Proteins 
  • Fats 
  • Vitamins & other nutrients 

Carbohydrates 

They are the starches, sugar and fiber in foods such as
grains, fruits, vegetables, milk product and sweets. They raise the blood sugar
faster and higher than other nutrients in foods such as protein and fats. Your
knowledge of the foods that contains carbohydrate and the amount you have in a
meal is helpful for blood sugar control. It is preferred you choose your
carbohydrate nutrient from healthy sources such as vegetables, fruits and whole
grains (high fiber) than sources with added sugars, fat and salt. The more
carbohydrates you eat, the higher the levels of sugar you will have released as
you digest and absorb your food 

Proteins 

This class of food is important in eating a balanced diet;
they can keep you from feeling hungry. Unlike carbohydrates, they do not raise
your glucose. However, you should consume them with control to prevent weight
gain.  

Fats 

They are necessary part of a balanced diet, especially the
healthy fats from fish, nuts and seeds. They do not raise blood glucose but are
high in calories and can cause weight gain. If you consume more calories than
you burn in a day, those calories will be converted into fat and stored in your
body. The more weight you gain, the less sensitive your body becomes to
insulin. As a result, your blood glucose level can rise. 

Fiber 

Fiber is one component of carbohydrates that isn’t converted
into sugar. This is because it can’t be digested. Fibers are important for
health and won’t affect your blood sugar levels 

Healthy eating habits 

  • Have
    regular meals with proper portion sizes 
  • Eat
    variety of nutrient rich foods in each meal balanced with healthy fats,
    proteins, whole grains, vitamins in appropriate sizes 
  • Choose
    calorie-free liquids such as unsweetened tea, coffee or water 
  • Choose
    sugar substitutes 
  • Choose
    lower salt options 

It is important to note that your choice of food and how
much you eat is relative to your blood sugar level. If you eat more than you
need, you blood sugar rises. To help prevent and manage diabetes, have a good
sense of portion control of food.