If you want to lose pounds and inches of body fat and keep it off then you have to gain control of your blood sugar. It’s the excess blood sugar that causes the extra fat around your middle and no matter how much exercise and dieting you do unless you control the sugar balance it is difficult to lose those inches!
So here’s what happens. After you eat, your food especially your carbohydrates, get turned into sugar which your cells need for fuel. When there is sugar in your blood, insulin is produced and delivers the sugar to your cells. If there is more sugar than your body needs, insulin has to make a decision.
What to do with the extra sugar? Your body knows that excess blood sugar is very dangerous. If left to flow through your body it irritates the lining of the blood vessels, causes nerve damage and can lead to other problems.
So what happens? Well insulin decides that it will store the excess sugar in fat cells because by doing this it isolates it in the fat cell and prevents it doing any damage to the rest of the body. By creating new fat cells it solves the problem of excess sugar, but creates a new one, because all those new fat cells are making you fatter and fatter!
That’s the reason why you can diet and exercise until you are huffing and puffing but you are not getting the results that you deserve. If the blood sugar is high more fat cells are produced.
So it is important to cut out all added sugar and processed foods and eat a low glycaemic diet. You may think a baked potato is a good lunch to have but infact it is very high glycaemic so it pushes your blood sugar up very quickly. A sweet potato would be much better! So don’t forget that here, we are not just talking about added sugar, high glycaemic foods also increase your blood sugar levels.
Which foods are high glycaemic? All processed foods, all desserts, anything to do with white flour, white bread, even brown bread unless it is very grainy like a granary bread. Many of the root vegetables such as parsnips, beetroot, chips, most cereals except for porridge oats, all cakes, biscuits, muffins and bakery products and even raisins and sultanas! Not much left? We all have to get back to eating fresh home cooked foods, meat, fish and lots of green vegetables, with fruit for dessert!
Most people think that blood sugar is the whole problem, but the hidden factor that affects both your blood sugar, and your ability to burn fat, is the hormone insulin. As I said earlier, insulin brings the blood sugar to your cells where it is used for energy.
However if your blood sugar is always high and your body produces more and more insulin to cope with it, over time your body stops reacting to it and this is called ‘insulin resistance’.
This is not good for the waist line, because the more insulin in your blood, the more you convert excess glucose into fat, causing you to gain more and more weight.
You can however, programme your body to become more responsive to insulin. So how do you do that?
Chromium, an essential mineral for blood sugar helps to lower your blood sugar levels and makes your cells more responsive to insulin. When the body is better at responding to insulin the levels come down more naturally. Consequently if you have less insulin in your body you have fewer fat cells.
Alpha lipoic acid is known as a ‘universal anti-oxidant’ and helps maintain healthy nerves and blood vessels which come under attack when your blood sugar levels are high. It also helps your body to respond to insulin.
There is also a little known new controller, the green coffee bean. This bean contains ‘chlorogenic acids’ which help to regulate your blood sugar in two ways.
• They block the absorption of sugars in your intestines, which lowers your overall blood sugar and helps to control the sugar spikes after a meal.
• They inhibit the ‘back up’ production of glucose by your liver.
Cinnamon bark is another herbal supplement that studies have found can help to lower blood sugar.
Zinc, the trace mineral is also known to help with blood sugar levels and cellular energy.
So, exercise is good for your cardiovascular system and to tone your muscles and it is important to do some regularly, but for inch loss, controlling your blood sugar is vital. Have a look at your diet and see how much sugar you are eating, not just added sugar but high glycaemic foods as well.