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Fruit raises blood sugar levels

Most of us experience low blood sugar without realising it, especially if we go without food for too long. Young women who eat little, work out too much and skip meals experience low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) in the form of black outs, fainting spells and giddiness.

health and fitness Updated: Mar 29, 2012 20:06 IST

Most of us experience low blood sugar without realising it, especially if we go without food for too long. Young women who eat little, work out too much and skip meals experience low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) in the form of black outs, fainting spells and giddiness. Others experience milder symptoms like low energy levels, mood swings, irritability, difficulty in concentration, trembling knees, palpitations, drowsiness, headaches, confusion and anxiety.

Among diabetics, low blood sugar happens due to hyper secretion of insulin which is triggered by eating too much sugary food or by consumption of too much alcohol and not eating adequate protein. Symptoms of hypoglycemia usually occur when blood glucose falls below 60 mg/dl. The immediate line of treatment for any individual in a hypoglycemic state is to supply the body with at least 15 gms of glucose on the spot. Blood sugar is monitored again after 15 minutes and in case the blood glucose is still below 70 mg/dl, then the dose of 15 gm of sugar is repeated.

And if you are a diabetic, immediate administration of glucose is of vital importance.

What you can do
Make sure you eat at least 20-30 gms of protein for breakfast along with some carbohydrates. You can eat items like a paneer sandwhich, eggs and toast, cheese and toast, soya milk and eggs.
Continue to eat good quality protein for lunch as well. Fish, chicken, curd and dal provide you with proteins.
High fibre foods like fresh vegetables, fruit, whole grain, pulses and legumes strike a vital balance in the body's blood glucose regulation mechanism due to their low glycemic index. Increase fibre intake by eating whole grains like jowar, bajri, vegetables and fruits.
Snacks like almonds, chana, sprouts, peanuts, curds, paneer chunks can prevent low blood sugar from recurring.
One should avoid taking alcohol on an empty stomach and caffeine can trigger hypoglycemia, so it should be minimised. Refined flour and high sugar foods also lead to a spiked release of glucose in the bloodstream.
Supplements of chromium help reduce sugar cravings as well as prevent low blood sugar. When you eat too many sweets and chocolates chromium is greatly depleted in the body. So we need to take chromium supplements to balance blood sugar.
Vitamin like B complex, magnesium, vitamin E and essential oils like omega 3 and gama linoleit acid are important in preventing
low blood sugar in weak individuals.

Dr. Anjali Mukerjee, Nutritionist and Founder, Director - Health Total