Learn all about the hypoglycemia diet, including which foods to include in a hypoglycemia diet plan, what to avoid if you have hypoglycemia, and whether a hypoglycemia diet plan is best for you. Low blood sugar can often be treated simply by sticking to a strict hypoglycemia diet plan. Read on to learn more...
Having hypoglycemia can be hard, but sticking to a hypoglycemia diet can sometimes be harder if you've had a different diet your whole life. Implementing a hypoglycemia diet into your life is crucial to keeping blood sugar levels normal if you have problems with hypoglycemia or Type 2 Diabetes.
A hypoglycemia diet is actually not that bad compared to other diets such as high blood sugar diets or weight loss diets. If you have hypoglycemia, the first step is always to consult your doctor, as you may have other ailments surrounding your physical health that may prevent you from following a generalized hypoglycemia diet as described below. While InfoBarrel is a great place to learn about things like different diets, hypoglycemia is a serious health condition that a doctor needs to discuss with you.
KNOWING WHAT TO AVOID
There are so many foods included in a hypoglycemia diet, it makes it easier to first find out what NOT to include in your diet. Hypoglycemics need to avoid alcohol, as well as sugary or starchy foods. Things like alcohol, white bread, soda, candy, cake, and pasta can make a hypoglcyemic's blood sugar levels go haywire. Spiking and descending blood sugar levels in a short amount of time can result in reactive hypoglycemia effects ranging from confusion and sweaty palms to more severe effects such as hypoglycemic shock, seizures, fainting, coma, and even death.
WHAT TO EAT
A hypoglycemia diet is rather generous in terms of what you should eat. A good hypoglycemia diet consists of lots of protein and complex carbs, which take longer for the body to break down, thus keeping your blood sugar levels consistantly within normal range. Protein can be found in meat, nuts, eggs, whey, and milk. Complex carbs are common in whole wheat and grain products, as well as fruits and vegetables. Having a good source of fiber is also a good addition to your hypoglycemia diet as it naturally regulates blood sugar levels. Basically, a hypoglycemia diet is comparable to the Food Pyramid Recommended Diet, it's pretty easy to follow and generally good for your overall health - - not to mention it keeps your reactive hypoglycemia attacks in check.
WHEN TO EAT
In the average diet, a person normally eats 3 good sized meals a day. In the hypoglycemia diet, all that's going to change. Those diagnosed with hypoglycemia or Type 2 Diabetes are generally recommended to change their diet to 6 small meals a day. Changing to a hypoglycemia diet possesses a few benefits:
- It allows you to have a constant supply of energy and fuel, reducing the amount of 'crashes' throughout the day
- After dieting this way for long enough, your body gets better at keeping your blood sugar levels normal
- Implenting this diet will prevent reactive hypoglycemia attacks over time
- Eating 6 small meals a day is also a great diet to use if you want to speed up your metabolism and stay lean
The portion sizes of each of your hypoglycemia diet meals can vary depending on other factors surrounding your health. However, a good rule of thumb for hypoglycemia meal portions are to have 20% protein, 40% whole grains, and 40% fruits and vegetables for each meal. Though you don't want to eat too many fruits as they contain quite a bit of sugar. This may be a task for some hypoglycemics, but it's very important to eat like this if you have hypoglycemia.
SNACKS AND DESSERTS
A big part of the hypoglycemia diet involves snacking. As a hypoglycemic, you may often find yourself craving a snack in between meals. It's also not uncommon to crave sweets when you eat such healthy and well-balanced meals all the time.
Those with hypoglycemia should limit the amount of sugary desserts they include in their diet to just a few times a month, and that's being generous. Healthy desserts to include in your diet can be things like small portions of fruit, wheat toast with fruit spread, granola or cereal bars (ones that aren't heavy on the sugar); not candy, cake, ice cream, and things of that nature.
If you're just looking for something to sanck on in between meals, reach for something with nutritional value. Grab some peanuts, cheese & crackers, granola bars, etc. Avoid empty calories from candy and the like.
By following this general hypoglycemia diet guideline you will greatly decrease your chances of developing Type 2 Diabetes, experiencing reactive hypoglycemia or hypoglycemic shock. Remember to always discuss any changes in your diet with your doctor, especially if you have hypoglycemia. Only a doctor will be able to tell you what is safe for you to eat after he evaluates other health issues and gives you a proper diagnosis.
If you like this article and want to learn more about hypoglycemia, be sure to check out my other InfoBarrels:
- How Alcohol Affects Hypoglycemia: The Effects of Alcohol on Hypoglycemia and How to Stay Safe
- What is Hypoglycemia? Answers to Basic Questions About Hypoglycemia
- Recognizing Signs and Symptoms of Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar)
Top 5 Things Every Hypoglycemic Should Avoid
- How to Treat a Reactive Hypoglycemia Attack