Blood sugar has a remarkable influence on the quality of our health, according to mountains of evidence proving tiny glucose molecules in our blood have the power to wreak havoc on both our physical and mental wellbeing. When a body’s glucose is at optimal levels, it is easier to maintain a healthy weight, sleep is improved, skin ages more slowly and even mood stabilizes. High blood sugar symptoms such as fatigue, cravings and even wrinkles are not desirable – but the likelihood of much more critical conditions like prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke and even dementia can increase if glucose is not kept in check.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 13% of adults in the United States already live with diabetes, and an additional 34.5% have prediabetes. This means nearly half of our country’s population also has a higher risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia later in life. Extensive research shows that when cells don’t utilize insulin properly, the actual workings of the brain are negatively impacted. High blood sugar can lead to an accumulation of beta amyloid protein that blocks signals between the brain’s nerve cells, a key characteristic of Alzheimer’s.
Thankfully, there is good news. Any person can take simple steps to implement a number of things each day that can dramatically improve blood sugar levels. Much of taking control of glucose hinges on how we eat and move. Many tactics are surprisingly easy – such as eating a small dinner salad before consuming carbs, eating more grains and fiber, staying well hydrated to flush excess sugar out of the kidneys and taking just a 10-minute walk after a meal.
Brain health and its influence on overall wellbeing is a major focus in Butterfield’s fitness program. In September, Fitness & Wellness Director Jennifer Neill will present a two-part series about blood sugar’s effects on the body and what anyone can do to optimize their glucose levels. Her talks will discuss and offer guidance from instant best-selling book Glucose Revolution: The Life-Changing Power of Balancing Your Blood Sugar by Jessie Inchauspe. In preparation for the series, Neill wore a NutriSense continuous blood sugar monitor to track her own body’s data 24/7, while working with one of the company’s dieticians. She will share what she learned and suggest what others can do to see positive results. For those who plan to attend the presentations, Neill suggests obtaining a copy of Inchauspe’s book to read up on the subject in advance and be prepared with questions.