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The Importance Of Balancing Your Blood Sugar

I am so excited to have started studying for my diploma in eating disorders, if a little daunted by the amount of work I have to do. One fact that has really stuck with me is to do with depression. My lecturer has been treating people with eating disorders for over 30 years, and they often come to her with depressive symptoms. Not one of them has had to use antidepressants. Once their blood sugar is balanced, the depressive symptoms disappear.

I am not for one minute suggesting that no-one needs to take antidepressants. They are an essential and effective medication for many people. I am just pointing out what an effect an imbalance in our blood sugar can have on how we feel.

When the food we eat is broken down in the gut, carbohydrate (eg rice, pasta, bread) is broken down into glucose and absorbed into our blood. This is our blood sugar, and it is used to give us energy. When we eat something like processed food or white rice it is broken down really easily and enters the bloodstream very quickly. Our blood sugar shoots up and then drops rapidly (to do with insulin) which causes an imbalance. We can balance our blood sugar by eating complex carbohydrates found in foods such as peas, beans, whole grains, and vegetables and by eating protein with each meal (including snacks). These foods are broken down and absorbed into the bloodstream much more slowly. This allows our blood sugar to stay balanced.

Eating protein with each meal will also will help us feel fuller for longer. It reduces the cravings between meals and stops you reaching for sugary snacks.

This is one of the first tasks I ask my clients to do. Why don’t you give it a go.

Lisa

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