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Before I discovered these 11 natural healthy tips, I was one of the many Americans walking around with prediabetes and not knowing it. I would consider myself extremely lucky to have gotten this warning sign because I was able to stop the progression and reverse prediabetes that may have eventually led to diabetes type 2.
I Didn’t Believe I had Prediabetes, I Wasn’t Overweight!
Recently, I found out from a blood test that I had prediabetes and this didn’t make any sense because I thought that I was eating a healthy diet of fruits, vegetables, and limited carbs. I never had a weight problem, at my 40th high school reunion I weighed only 5 lbs over my slim high school weight! My only health concern was being occasionally hypothyroid and for that I was seeing a great homeopathic doctor that kept an eye on my thyroid levels. But when he tested by blood, I found out that my blood sugar was slightly out of normal range. His recommendation–stop eating fruits! I hated to hear this because I had been enjoying eating an orange every day and I thought this was a healthy thing to do.
Well, fast forward to one year later and my blood sugar is much improved. I was able to reverse prediabetes naturally! I feel that now, I am the healthiest I’ve ever been because I have followed some simple steps to get my blood sugar in check. You can reverse prediabetes naturally, too!
Is Prediabetes Common?
Over 79 million Americans have prediabetes according to data from the CDC and many of them are walking around not knowing this! Most importantly, they are missing out on the opportunity to prevent future type 2 diabetes and the resulting multitude of detrimental health effects such as; heart disease, neuropathy, kidney disease, eye damage and hearing impairment.
What is Prediabetes?
If you have prediabetes it means that you have higher blood sugar than normal, but it is not enough to be classified as diabetes. This means there is an increased risk for developing diabetes type 2 and heart disease in the future. According to the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, if a healthier lifestyle is not adopted, many people with prediabetes become a type 2 diabetic within 10 years.
In prediabetes there is a rise in blood sugar levels and the cells develop insulin resistance. In insulin resistance the glucose can no longer enter the cells and more of the hormone insulin is needed. The body then puts demand on the beta cells in the pancreas for more insulin. After a while enough insulin can’t be produced and this results in too much glucose in the bloodstream which can lead to diabetes.
But the good news is, if you found out you have prediabetes you have a fantastic opportunity to reverse it! It is easier to reverse prediabetes than type 2 diabetes.
Here is How You Can Reverse Prediabetes Naturally:
1. Stop eating fruit!
What’s so bad about fruits? Fruits can raise blood sugar! Although fruits have many health benefits including fiber, antioxidants and nutrients, fruits also have fructose, natural sugar. Some fruits are worse culprits than others. For example, fruits high in sugar with more carbohydrates per serving are; bananas, apples and pears. Fruits that are low in sugar include blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries.
Every kind of fruit can elevate your blood sugar.
Occasionally, however, you can eat some berries, which are low in sugar, as a treat. Another way you may enjoy limited fruit is by eating some healthy fat with it. The fat slows down your metabolism and your blood sugar does not rise as fast. Two sources of healthy fat that are excellent are avocados and coconut oil.
2. Eat a diet low in carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are converted into glucose a simple sugar in digestion. Eating too many carbohydrates raises blood sugar and increases the demand of insulin from the pancreas. Another tip is if you eat carbohydrates with protein or a healthy fat it helps slow down the increase in blood sugar levels.
Stay away from alcohol, another carbohydrate which can increase blood sugar.
3. A Gluten free or Paleo diet is beneficial for helping reverse prediabetes. One way to limit carbohydrates is to adopt the paleo diet. Also, if you eat gluten free it may be easy to reduce carbohydrates, but don’t forget about the processed gluten free food, which contains carbohydrates! Another benefit of the gluten free diet is that you can reduce inflammation in the intestines which may cause blood sugar to spike.
4. Eat every 2 hours. Eating small meals or healthy snacks every two hours helps keep your blood sugar steady.
5. Put coconut oil in your diet. Use coconut oil for cooking and in your recipes. Eating this healthy fat with any carbohydrates will help slow down your metabolism. You can also have a couple of teaspoons throughout the day to help keep your blood sugar steady. Coconut oil is great because it gives you energy without insulin spikes.
6. Eat an avocado a day, keep the doctor away! Avocados are a healthy fat and they provide antioxidants, vitamins C and E, magnesium, potassium and fiber. Eating avocados is a good way to help reverse prediabetes because you can substitute eating this healthy fat for carbs and still boost your energy.
7. Get enough Omega-3 fatty acids. The western diet is comprised mostly of Omega-6 fatty acids and causes an imbalance in your dietary fats. An optimal ratio of Omega-3’s and Omega-6’s is important for helping reverse prediabetes. Make sure you eat plenty of wild-caught fish, such as sockeye salmon. Organic eggs are also another good source of Omega-3’s.
8. Eat fresh whole foods and stay away from processed food. This is an important factor for reversing prediabetes. Processed foods contains many hidden harmful ingredients, added sugar, and is often high carbs, which can cause spikes in blood sugar levels. In place of high carbohydrate breads, I bake with coconut flour, which is very low carb. You can make delicious paleo breads and muffins like these.
9. Make sure you get enough exercise, keep stress low and sleep enough. After you eat a meal, take a walk, this helps keep your blood sugar steady.
10. Get enough fiber, which helps control blood sugar. Diets with higher fiber have been found to have a lower risk of diabetes. You can eat flaxseeds which are an excellent source of fiber or you can take pure organic psyllium husk, this is the one I use.
A lot of people take Metamucil; however, it has added ingredients, such as artificial food coloring and aspartame, a toxic genetically modified artificial sweetener.
11. Increase your magnesium level. Many studies have found a link between magnesium deficiency and diabetes. It is estimated that 70% of the population is deficient in this mineral. See how to boost your magnesium.
How you can test your blood sugar levels at home:
A good way to test your blood sugar is to get a glucose monitor. It’s easy to use because it is a simple finger prick and within seconds you find out your blood sugar after you eat. The test kits are also inexpensive, you can go down to your local store or find one online for under $20.
If two hours after you eat, you find a reading higher than 140 mg/dL, than you should reduce your intake of carbohydrates because you may have some insulin resistance. Glucometer testing is a good way to find out what carbohydrates cause your blood sugar to spike.
Note: Today’s post was written by Julie Adams.