Fruits For Hypoglycemia

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Fruits For Hypoglycemia? When it comes to hypoglycemic diet fruits, the first one that comes to mind is of course apple since they’re sweet and tasteful. However, people with this type of disorders are recommended to eat other types of fruits as well that are rich in vitamins and minerals but not much on sugar.

Is There a Hypoglycemia Diet?

If you’ve ever gone too long between meals to eat and suddenly felt shaky, lightheaded, anxious, and cranky, you’ve had hypoglycemia. These unpleasant symptoms are your body’s way of warning you that your blood sugar (glucose) levels have fallen too low. (That’s what “hypoglycemia” means.)

Glucose is the body’s main source of energy. In most people, blood sugar levels should be within a range of 70 to 99 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).

Most healthy people only need a quick high-carb snack, such as an apple or banana, to help get their blood sugar back up to normal.

But hypoglycemia often happens in people with diabetes, and if a diabetic person’s blood sugar levels dip too far below a healthy range, it can be dangerous. Even in people without diabetes, hypoglycemia can cause serious medical issues, including blurred vision, confusion, or loss of consciousness. So you want to get your blood sugar back on track, ASAP.

Quick Fixes

When you need to get your blood sugar back up quickly, try one of these items:

  • A small apple, banana, or orange
  • 15 grapes
  • A few prunes
  • 2 tablespoons of raisins
  • half a bagel
  • half a cup of granola

Each of these foods has about 15 grams of carbohydrates — the ideal amount to rebalance blood sugar levels.

If You Have Diabetes

Eating too little food after taking your medication or exercising more than usual can make your blood sugar drop too low. So can taking too much insulin or diabetes medication.

If you get hypoglycemia, use the 15-15 rule: Eat or drink 15 grams of carbohydrates, wait 15 minutes, and then check your blood glucose levels. If it’s still below 70 mg/dL, have another 15-gram serving. Your goal: Raise your blood glucose to at least 70 mg/dL.

Ideas for a fast 15 grams of carbohydrates include:

  • 1/2 cup of juice or regular (not diet) soda
  • 1 tablespoon of honey or sugar
  • Hard candy, jellybeans, or gummy candy. Check the food label for how many to eat.
  • Glucose tablets or gel. Follow the package instructions.

Don’t overeat to try to feel better. It can make your blood sugar levels rise too quickly.


If You Don’t Have Diabetes

Your blood sugar can fall if you wait too long to eat, such as if you’re fasting. It can also happen about 4 hours after a meal. This is reactive hypoglycemia. Or you might have symptoms similar to hypoglycemia if you have postprandial syndrome. This syndrome happens if you eat a lot of simple carbs (like pasta, bread, or cereal) and your body releases too much insulin to deal with it.

Use these tips to avoid having your blood sugar drop too low from either cause:

Eat small meals and snacks spread throughout the day. Aim for every 3-4 hours.

Stick with healthy eating habits. This should include a variety of fruits, vegetables, and sources of lean protein. The fiber in plant foods, along with lean protein, will give you lasting energy and won’t crash your blood sugar. If you plan to eat or drink something sweet, do so as part of a balanced meal.

Limit caffeine. Its effects can mimic hypoglycemia symptoms.

Limit or avoid alcohol. Alcohol can cause hypoglycemia, especially if you have a drink without eating something. If you drink, keep it moderate: no more than one serving a day for women or two for men. A serving is 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of hard liquor. And don’t drink on an empty stomach.

Treating Low Blood Sugar

You are at risk of having a low blood sugar reaction if you:

  • Skip or delay a meal or snack
  • Take too much insulin or eat too few carbohydrates
  • Exercise
  • Drink alcohol, especially without eating carbohydrates

Check your blood sugar if you have any of these symptoms:

  • Weakness and/or fatigue
  • Headache
  • Sweating
  • Anxiety
  • Dizziness
  • Shaking
  • Increased heartbeat

If your blood sugar is less than 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl):

  • Eat 15 to 30 grams of carbohydrate (sample foods listed below)
  • Wait 15 minutes and then recheck your blood sugar
  • If your blood sugar is still less than 100 mg/dl, take another 15 grams of carbohydrate and retest your blood sugar in another 15 minutes. Repeat if necessary.

Important: If you have frequent low blood sugars speak to your doctor. You may need changes in your medication and/or meal plan.

Quick Carbohydrate Guide for Treating Low Blood Sugars

If your blood sugar is less than 70 mg/dl, you need 15 to 30 grams of a quickly absorbed carbohydrate, like the ones listed below. Each of the following servings provides 15 grams of carbohydrate.

Candies and Other Sweets

  • 5 small gum drops
  • 12 gummy bears
  • 6 large jelly beans
  • 5 Life Savers
  • 15 Skittles
  • 1 Tablespoon honey, jam or jelly
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar in water
  • 4 Starburst

Beverages

  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 1/2 cup orange or grapefruit juice
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice
  • 1/2 cup regular soda (not diet)
  • 1/3 cup grape juice
  • 1/3 cup cranberry juice
  • 1/3 cup prune juice
  • 1 cup fat free milk

Fruits

  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 small apple
  • 1 small orange
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 2 tablespoons of raisins
  • 15 grapes

What foods should I eat or avoid for hypoglycemia?

If you have diabetes, then you will know that certain foods can significantly affect your blood sugar levels. There is no one-size-fits-all meal plan for people with diabetes, but it can be confusing knowing what you can and can’t eat. In general, meals that are high in protein, complex carbohydrates, and low in fat help to minimize fluctuations between high and low blood sugar levels. It also helps if you make your meals smaller and spread them out during the day so that you are eating every 3 to 4 hours instead of only having 3 large meals a day.

You should avoid foods high in saturated fat or sugar and choose foods high in protein, soluble fiber, or with a low glycemic index (low GI) score – these low GI foods contain carbohydrates that take the body longer to break down. Alcohol can also play havoc with your blood sugar levels, and if you don’t want to eliminate it, then keep it to a minimum and never mix alcohol with sugar-filled mixers, such as fruit juice. Eat a small meal soon after waking, a wholesome snack mid-morning and mid-afternoon, a light lunch and dinner, and then a small bedtime healthy snack.

Some examples of nutritionally high breakfasts suitable for people at risk of hypoglycemia include:

  • Scrambled or hardboiled eggs, plus a slice of whole-grain bread with cinnamon (cinnamon may help reduce blood sugar)
  • Steel-cut oatmeal, with blueberries, kiwifruit, peaches, or sunflower seeds
  • Plain Greek yogurt with berries, honey, and oatmeal

Some examples of nutritionally high mid-morning or mid-afternoon snacks suitable for people at risk of hypoglycemia include:

  • A small apple or peach with cheddar cheese
  • A banana mixed with a handful of almonds or walnuts
  • One piece of avocado or hummus on whole-grain toast
  • 4 whole-grain crackers and a can of sardines or tuna
  • No-sugar peanut butter on whole-grain bread or crackers
  • One cup of brown rice with kidney beans

Some examples of nutritionally high lunches suitable for people at risk of hypoglycemia include:

  • A tuna or chicken salad sandwich on whole-grain bread with romaine lettuce
  • A green salad topped with chicken, chickpeas, tomatoes, and carrots
  • One piece of grilled fish, a baked sweet potato, and a side salad or side of cooked veggies

When it comes to your evening meal, keep it as small as your other meals, but ensure you include protein and complex carbohydrates. Some examples of nutritionally high dinners suitable for people at risk of hypoglycemia include:

  • Soup, such as lentil and quinoa
  • Grilled fish with broccoli, peas, and sweet potato
  • Broccoli salad with artichokes, black beans, and sun-dried tomatoes
  • Chicken Vege stir fry with zucchini, carrots, and broccoli
  • Vegetarian lentil tacos.

Before you go to bed, a small snack close to bedtime can help keep your blood sugar levels stable throughout the night. Some examples of light bedtime snacks suitable for people at risk of hypoglycemia include:

  • Low-sugar, high protein Greek yogurt mixed with blueberries and walnuts
  • A no-sugar vegetable smoothie

Foods that are not suitable for people with hypoglycemia to eat because they can cause your blood sugar levels to fluctuate significantly include:

  • White bread, white rice, and pasta
  • Trans fats
  • Sugar-sweetened drinks
  • Fruit-flavored yogurt
  • Sweetened breakfast cereals
  • Honey, agave nectar, and maple syrup
  • Dried fruit
  • Pretzels, crackers, or chips
  • French fries and other fried food
  • Fruit juices. These are best avoided, but if you do want to drink juice occasionally choose 100% juice varieties without added sweeteners, dilute the juice with water and only drink one glass. Water with a little squeeze of lemon added is preferred
  • Caffeine found in coffee, flavored coffee drinks, and energy drinks can affect blood sugar levels in some people. Decaffeinated coffee or herbal tea are preferred.

Diet Plans for Hypoglycemia

Hypoglycemia means that you have low blood sugar. People with diabetes often experience low blood sugar levels. Certain medications, excessive alcohol consumption, some critical illnesses and hormone deficiencies can also cause hypoglycemia without diabetes.

Reactive hypoglycemia is a condition that causes low blood sugar within a four-hour window after meals. Eating food raises your blood sugar levels, but people who have hypoglycemia make more insulin than is needed when they eat. This excess insulin leads to the drop in their blood sugar level.

Hypoglycemia is a lifelong condition, but you can help manage its symptoms through your diet. Follow these rules of thumb:

Tips

  • Eat small meals every 3 to 4 hours throughout the day, rather than 3 large meals per day. Avoid foods high in saturated fats or trans fats.
  • Choose foods with a low glycemic index score.
  • Reduce or eliminate processed and refined sugars from your diet.
  • Choose complex carbohydrates over simple carbohydrates.
  • Reduce or eliminate alcoholic drinks, and never mix alcohol with sugar-filled mixers, such as fruit juice.
  • Eat lean protein.
  • Eat foods high in soluble fiber.

Here are some ideas for a diet plan for people with hypoglycemia.

What to eat when you wake up

You should eat a small meal as soon as possible after waking. A good breakfast should consist of protein, such as scrambled eggs, plus a complex carbohydrate. Try these:

  • hard boiled eggs and a slice of whole-grain bread with cinnamon (several small studies indicate that cinnamon may help reduce blood sugar)
  • a small serving of steel-cut oatmeal, like this protein-packed oatmeal with blueberries, sunflower seeds, and agave
  • plain Greek yogurt with berries, honey, and oatmeal

In addition, be mindful of your consumption of juices. Stick to 100% juice varieties that do not have added sweeteners, and limit your intake to 4 to 6 ounces. Dilute the juice with water or choose a big glass of water with lemon instead.

Steel-cut oatmeal is lower on the glycemic index than other types of oatmeal, plus it contains lots of soluble fiber. Soluble fiber helps slow down carbohydrate absorption, which helps keep your blood sugar stable. Make sure to choose a type with no added sugar or corn syrup.

Also, caffeine may affect blood sugar in some people. Decaffeinated coffee or herbal tea may be your best bet for a hot breakfast drink. Discuss caffeine intake with your doctor to determine if it’s an important factor for you.

Mid-morning snack

Fruits can be part of a nutritious mid-morning snack. They’re fibrous, provide beneficial vitamins and minerals, and contain natural sugars for energy. It’s best to pair fruit with a protein or healthy fat to sustain your fullness and keep your blood sugar level even. Having a whole-grain, fibrous carbohydrate paired with a protein or healthy fat is also a great option.

Try these healthy mid-morning snack options:

  • a small apple with cheddar cheese
  • a banana with a small handful of nuts or seeds
  • a piece of whole grain toast with an avocado or hummus spread
  • a can of sardines or tuna with whole grain crackers plus a glass of low-fat milk

Lunch plan

If lunch typically means office takeout, opt for a tuna or chicken salad sandwich on whole-grain bread with romaine lettuce.

If you’re packing your own lunch, here are some ideas:

  • a green salad topped with chicken, chickpeas, tomatoes, and other veggies
  • a piece of grilled fish, a baked sweet potato, and a side salad or side of cooked veggies

All potatoes directly affect blood sugar, but some are less impactful than others. White russet potatoes are highest on the glycemic index, followed by boiled white potatoes, and then sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes are full of antioxidants and may help regulate insulin.

Mid-afternoon snack

Your mid-afternoon snack is a great time to reach for complex carbohydrates, particularly if you face a long commute home after work. Complex carbs are digested slowly. This means they deliver glucose at a slow pace, which can help your blood sugar level stay stable.

Complex carbs include:

  • whole-wheat bread
  • broccoli
  • legumes
  • brown rice

A hardworking mid-afternoon snack could be:

  • a no-sugar variety of peanut butter on whole-wheat bread or crackers
  • a cup of brown rice with kidney beans
  • veggies and hummus

If you love zesty flavors, make a large batch of cilantro-flavored Mexican brown rice and store it in individual serving cups for a delicious and healthy snack on the go.

What to eat before you exercise

Physical activity lowers blood sugar, so having a snack before exercising is a must. Before working out, grab a high-protein snack with carbohydrates. Good choices include:

  • fruit and crackers
  • Greek yogurt with berries
  • apple with peanut butter
  • small handful of raisins and nuts
  • peanut butter and jelly sandwich on whole-grain bread

Just make sure not to eat a large meal before exercising. Include a glass of water, too.

Dinner plan

Keep your evening meal as small as your other meals. Dinner is a good time to eat some protein and complex carbs. This simple-to-make lentil and quinoa soup provides both, plus it’s filling and delicious. Sprinkle on some parmesan cheese or have a glass of low-fat or skim milk on the side.

Super Snacks for Hypoglycemia

MANAGING DIABETES USUALLY means doing whatever necessary to keep your blood-sugar levels from going too high. But sometimes the treatments do their job almost too well, and levels get too low. Some medications for type 2 diabetes put you at risk of mild hypoglycemia, which can make you feel shaky, hungry, and weak. If you’re being treated with insulin, you’re at risk for more severe, life-threatening hypoglycemia, when plummeting blood sugar can cause mental confusion and even unconsciousness.

Dealing with the ups and downs is just part of diabetes life. The key? Being prepared! Over the years, I’ve assembled a list of fast blood-sugar boosting snacks. These are some of my favorites.

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