No matter what you eat, your blood sugar levels will rise after eating. But that doesn’t mean that all blood sugar levels are high and all are normal.
What are normal blood sugar levels after eating?
While you may have high blood sugar levels, you may also have healthy ones too.
So how do you know what yours are?
How do you determine whether or not your blood sugar levels are normal?
This article will help you find out if your blood sugar levels are within a normal range and how to keep them there if they aren’t.
What Are Blood Sugar Levels?
There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to blood sugar levels and what they should be.
The truth is that blood sugar levels can vary, but you don’t need to fret or worry too much if you find out your levels are slightly outside of what is considered normal.
If you have diabetes, however, it’s important to learn about good blood sugar levels for diabetics and what affects them.
Once you understand how your body reacts to certain foods and activities, it will be easier to make dietary changes and exercise decisions that lower your blood sugar levels.
The reason we check our blood glucose is because it’s an indicator of health status in people with diabetes mellitus.
For example, when you eat, your body converts food into glucose and some of that sugar goes into your bloodstream, this increase in sugar triggers a release of insulin from your pancreas.
Insulin then acts as a ‘key’ to open up cells and let sugar enter them so that it can be used for energy or stored for later use.
How Do You Check Your Blood Sugar Level?
If you’re diagnosed with diabetes, it is important to monitor your blood sugar level.
If your body does not receive enough insulin (type 1 diabetes) or if too much glucose builds up in your bloodstream because your body cannot properly utilize insulin (type 2 diabetes), either of these situations can lead to symptoms like blurred vision, fatigue, dizziness, headaches and nausea.
Checking your blood sugar levels regularly helps keep track of how much glucose remains in your bloodstream.
Monitoring your levels also gives you an opportunity to address any potential issues before they get out of hand.
Why Should I Monitor My Blood Sugar Levels?
Monitoring your blood sugar levels allows you to treat low or high blood sugar before they become a problem.
Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) can both cause: Fatigue, irritability, confusion and headache.
Severe hypoglycemia can result in seizures and unconsciousness, while severe hyperglycemia can lead to loss of consciousness and even death.
Most health care professionals recommend that all people with diabetes monitor their blood glucose daily as well as when experiencing symptoms of either condition.
Some adults with Type 2 diabetes may also benefit from monitoring their blood glucose more frequently if they are overweight or obese, have insulin resistance, experience hypoglycemia unawareness (blurred vision and tingling sensation in hands), have advanced kidney disease or are taking certain medications such as thiazolidinediones.
If I don’t need to monitor my blood sugar, why do I need to know what normal blood sugar levels after eating is?
If you have been told that you have a condition called pre-diabetes (which means your blood glucose is higher than normal but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes), then checking your blood glucose regularly might help you take action before your condition worsens.
How Can Monitoring My Blood Sugar Levels Help Me Live Healthier?
It can help you prevent blood sugar problems such as hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia, which can result in symptoms such as dizziness, hunger, headaches and extreme fatigue.
If left untreated, these problems can lead to a coma or even death.
Monitoring your blood sugar levels on a regular basis is an essential tool for diagnosing and treating your condition.
Doctors recommend that everyone with diabetes monitor their blood sugar at least four times per day—and ideally every two hours after meals to ensure they remain within normal ranges.
When it comes to diet, it’s important to eat small meals frequently throughout the day instead of three large ones, avoiding sugary foods and beverages (including fruit juice) whenever possible.
When a diabetic patient eats too much sugar all at once, it increases his risk of experiencing dangerous spikes in his blood glucose level.
Who Should Monitor Blood Sugar Levels
Anyone can monitor their blood sugar levels.
Whether you have diabetes or not, monitoring blood sugar levels is always a good idea.
It’s important to know your numbers so that you can determine what they mean and what action needs to be taken.
If your blood glucose is too high then you will need to lower it by eating less carbs and exercising more.
Your doctor should tell you what is considered normal for yourself based on age, sex, weight, height, etc.
Other people who may benefit from checking their blood glucose regularly include those: With a family history of diabetes
Overweight or obese but not diabetic yet
With prediabetes (high blood sugar levels, below normal) or gestational diabetes (high blood sugar during pregnancy)
It’s important to speak with your doctor about testing your blood glucose levels if you think you might have undiagnosed diabetes.
Your doctor will order tests to determine what type of diabetes you might have and whether or not you need medication.
Normal Post Meal Blood Sugar Levels
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends that people with diabetes check their blood sugar 2 to 3 hours after meals and adjust insulin or oral medications accordingly.
According to ADA guidelines, your glucose levels will be close to normal after you eat if they are between 70 mg/dL and 180 mg/dL two hours after a meal.
For most people with diabetes, normal post-meal blood sugar is less than 140 mg/dL.
Values above 180 mg/dL two hours after eating usually mean that too much food was eaten; it is called reactive hypoglycemia in those who don’t have diabetes.
Reactive hypoglycemia often occurs several hours after breakfast for many people.
Taking more insulin may temporarily help, but eating smaller meals throughout the day can help prevent reactive hypoglycemia.
How Food Affects Blood Sugar
Meal after meal, you raise and lower your blood sugar levels, or at least you’re supposed to.
A high-carbohydrate meal causes your blood sugar to peak about two hours after eating; a low-carb meal raises it about an hour later.
But by monitoring how different foods affect your blood sugar, you can figure out how long it takes for yours to go back down again and work toward keeping it there.
The glucose meter is a critical tool in helping you make these adjustments as necessary.
When you monitor your blood sugar levels after eating, it’s easy to determine if you should cut back on your carb intake, or if everything is just fine.
In fact, it’s common for people with diabetes to measure their blood sugar levels multiple times throughout each day in order to ensure that they are taking enough insulin.
Whatever your reason for checking blood sugar levels after eating, measuring at home is a great way to stay on top of things and keep yourself feeling your best.
Just be sure to talk to your doctor before diving into any new diet plan.
He or she can advise you as far as what food items may pose problems when combined with certain medications or conditions, such as hypoglycemia.
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