As most diabetics already know, what you eat is extremely important. However, portion size should not be ignored even if you’re eating a high quality, low carbohydrate meal. In this post, I’d like to point out a few ways a diabetic can adversely affect their BG levels despite choosing high quality, BG friendly foods.
1. Eating too much. I have always been a large volume eater. If I make a salad, for example, I’ll throw in an entire head of lettuce, two carrots, half an onion, half an avocado, a handful of walnuts, and then cover it with olive oil, lemon juice, and balsamic vinegar. Though all these ingredients are generally safe for any diabetic and are nutritionally dense, the shear size of this meal can hijack BG levels and keep them high for hours.
2. Alchohol. I often have a glass of red wine with dinner which does not affect my blood sugar. On weekends, however, I may have two or three. Even this amount of red wine has no immediate impact on BG levels. Unfortunately, this amount of alchohol will take its toll during the night when dehydration and general inflamatory effects of alchohol drive BG levels up.
3. Body position following a meal. I know this one sounds pretty strange, but here is my own anecdotal experince with post meal activities. If I get up after a meal and stay on my feet by cleaning the kitchen or piddling around the house, BG levels will typically be good assuming I calculated insulin levels correctly. Even if I lay somewhat prone on the couch relaxing after a meal, BG levels will remain flat. Sitting at a desk working at a computer, on the other hand, sends my BG levels through the roof.
Like I said, these tips are not super advanced diabetes management tools, but just reminders that there are still ways to hijack your BG levels despite excellent food quality choices.