If you have type 2 diabetes, maintaining a healthy and balanced diet is critical.
A big part of that is avoiding certain types of food that cause your blood sugar to spike. Often, that means avoiding junk foods like sodas, fast food, and packaged snacks, and opting for a low-carb diet.
Even if you don't have diabetes, it's good to know what foods to avoid to keep your blood sugar levels normal. So, we've assembled a list of seven foods that can elevate blood sugar.
1. White Bread
White bread is a definite culprit when it comes to spiking blood sugar levels.
Here's the thing: white bread is made with refined flour. While it tastes good, this refined flour can be bad for your physiology.
Your body can easily and quickly digest this refined flour and pour it into your system, which induces a spike in your blood sugar. This doesn't mean you have to eschew white bread forever, but reducing your intake is a good idea.
2. Sodas and Sugary Drinks
This one probably comes as no great surprise.
Part of a good diet means avoiding sodas and sugary drinks, and this isn't only an injunction you'll hear from the dentist. To help keep blood sugar levels within a healthy range, try to avoid these kinds of drinks altogether.
3. White Rice
This is an unusual addition to our list, and one you might not expect.
But a study published in 2010 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) found that habitual consumers of white rice were at an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
So scratch white rice from the types of food you'll want to eat to keep blood sugar at appropriate levels.
4. Fast Food
Again, no surprise here.
Unfortunately, fast food always falls somewhere on the spectrum of "don't eat it" and "don't even think about eating it." It's full of salt, fat, and calories, which boosts your blood sugar levels through the roof.
There's no question that fast food can be very tempting. But if you want to keep your blood sugar levels normal, and avoid developing type 2 diabetes, it's best to limit the consumption of these foods.
5. Whole Milk
Whole milk dairy products are high in saturated fats. This is a significant factor in conditions such as heart disease.
Moving to skim or two percent milk is a great way to limit saturated fats while still getting that needed infusion of calcium.
6. Packaged Food
Snack foods of the commercial, packaged variety are a definite no-no.
These types of food tend to be very high in trans fats, which have the adverse effect of raising bad cholesterol and lowering good cholesterol in your blood. Opt instead for healthier snacks, such as fruits or nuts.
7. Red Meat
Red meat isn't something that needs to be excised entirely from your diet.
However, excessive consumption of red meat and processed meats is not advised if you want to avoid developing type 2 diabetes. Processed meats—things like cold cuts, bacon, and hot dogs—are especially to be avoided.
Types of Food to Lower Blood Sugar
So, those are seven of the main food types that you want to avoid if you'd like to keep your blood sugar from spiking. They may taste great—but they are definitely only to be eaten in moderation.
But now let's take a look at seven types of food that can actually help to lower your blood sugar.
Seafood is an excellent choice.
Whether fish or shellfish, these types of food supply healthy fats, vitamins, and antioxidants that help to regulate and lower blood sugar levels.
Seafood is also rich in protein, which slows digestion and reduces blood sugar spikes.
Eating nuts, such as peanuts and almonds, is a great way to replace unhealthy snacking. Nuts help regulate blood sugar, and are both filling and nutritious.
They're also high in protein and antioxidants, and they may help lower cholesterol. Really, there's no good reason not to eat nuts—besides, they taste great.
Your mother always told you to eat your broccoli, and now we know why.
Eating broccoli produces a healthful chemical reaction that ultimately reduces blood sugar levels. So, while broccoli may not be the most exciting food in the world, its ability to lower blood sugar definitely places it in the category of miracle foods.
Okra is a kind of flowering plant, one that produces a fruit that actually looks more like a vegetable.
It's also a potent weapon against spiking blood sugar. Some of its compounds, such as antioxidants and polysaccharides, are powerful factors in lowering blood sugar levels.
Avocados are delicious, but they're also part of a good diet.
Avocados are also rich in beneficial nutrients, such as protein, healthy fats, fiber, and vitamins. Best of all, they help to lower blood sugar.
6. Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits are sweet and delicious, but it seems they have less deleterious effects on blood sugar than some other kinds of fruits.
Citruses like oranges, lemons, and grapefruit are full of fiber and other salutary compounds that have potent anti-diabetic effects.
Apples are a fantastic source of nutrition. After all, as the old saw goes, an apple a day keeps the doctor away.
Apples are loaded with fiber and other healthy plant compounds, which lower blood sugar levels and guard against diabetes. They're a plentiful and tasty fruit, so try to make apples a steady part of your diet.
Eat the Right Foods to Maintain Your Blood Sugar
Keeping your blood sugar in control is all about eating the right types of food. So, lay off the sodas and fast food, and pile on more avocados and seafood.
Looking for easy, convenient food that's also healthy? Contact the Dinner Dude today, and see for yourself how healthy eating can change your life.