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How to Naturally Maintain Normal Healthy Blood Sugar Levels^ with Nutrition [Checklist]

Our body requires a constant supply of energy to run all of the metabolic processes that occur throughout the day. One major source of fuel for the body is sugar which can come from the carbohydrates we eat. Maintaining healthy blood sugar levels in the body is extremely important. Nutrition, which includes diet and dietary compounds, is one of the best areas to focus on in order to improve your blood sugar balance and maintain blood sugar naturally.

The relationship between food and blood sugar

Every food we eat is made up of three macronutrients in varying amounts. These macronutrients are fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. During the processes of digestion and absorption, fats and proteins are broken down in the body into lipids and amino acids, respectively. Carbohydrates are broken down in different sugar molecules. The most basic sugar molecules, also called monosaccharides, are glucose, fructose, and galactose. The sugar that is specifically important in blood sugar conversations is glucose; blood sugar is commonly called blood glucose.

Carbohydrates will have the most significant impact on blood sugar levels.1 Foods that contain a high proportion of carbohydrates, especially those with simple sugars that are easily and rapidly broken down in the body, provide more sugar for the body to use. This results in a rapid spike in blood sugar levels shortly after consumption.2 Foods that have higher amounts of other macronutrients will take longer to digest, delaying gastric emptying and therefore slowing digestion and absorption.1,2 This results in a less intense rise in blood sugar levels. Consuming an appropriate amount of protein will not cause blood sugar levels to rise, and may actually help decrease levels. As such, eating lean proteins can help naturally maintain healthy blood sugar levels. However, when consumed in excess, proteins can be broken down and converted to sugar.



Most foods will result in a change in blood sugar levels. However, the degree of change will vary based on the quantity and quality of sugars contained in the food. Foods that cause a rapid spike in blood sugar levels include high-carbohydrate, highly processed foods such as donuts, white bread, or jelly. On the other hand, foods containing complex carbohydrates and more fat and protein will result in a much smaller increase in blood sugar levels. It’s important to consider the beverage you’re consuming as part of your meal as well. Beverages can be an over-looked source of changing blood sugar levels. High-sugar beverages that will spike blood sugar levels include sweet tea, fruit juice, and soda pop.  Alcoholic beverages tend to cause blood sugar levels to drop, however, mixed drinks filled with sugar can cause a quick rise followed by a sharp decline in blood sugar.

Conversely, foods and beverages that are low in or lacking carbohydrates will have little to no effect on blood sugar levels.2 Milk contains the sugar lactose, which is broken down into glucose and galactose, but due to the presence of protein, fat, and other nutrients, it is relatively low in carbohydrates and will not lead to a large increase in blood sugar levels. Other beverages that will have little to no impact on blood sugar levels including herbal teas, unsweetened coffee, and water — the best choice for hydration and for keeping blood sugar levels under control.

Glycemic Index

One measure for assessing the impact a particular food will have on blood sugar levels is the glycemic index. Glycemic index is a number from 0 to 100 that indicates how high blood sugar levels will go after consuming 50 grams of that food. A high GI food is between 70 and 100, while medium GI foods have a value between 56 and 69, and low GI foods have a score below 55.2 Glycemic index gives you a picture of the quality of the food you’re eating in terms of blood sugar management, because a watermelon and fruit snacks are not created equally.


The science behind changes in blood sugar

A high GI value indicates that the food will cause a spike in blood sugar levels upon consumption. But how exactly does this happen? When a food is ingested, bodily processes immediately kick in, beginning in the mouth with both mechanical and chemical digestion. As the food travels through the gastrointestinal system, the digestion system works via acids, enzymes, and transporters to break down the macronutrients into smaller components that can be absorbed. In the case of carbohydrates, they are broken down into the three simple sugars that are easily absorbed into intestinal cells where they enter the bloodstream. Eventually, the glucose in the blood reaches the pancreas where it signals to cells to release insulin.3 Insulin, which is a signal to the body to grow because there are abundant nutrients, will travel to peripheral organs in the body, telling them to take in the circulating blood sugar. Specifically, insulin signals to glucose transporters in cells to come to the surface where they can receive and internalize blood sugar. In this way, sugar is delivered to tissues that will need it for a variety of functions.3

Defining healthy blood sugar levels

What we eat significantly affects blood sugar levels. But what exactly is a healthy or normal blood sugar level? And how can we tell how foods will affect our blood sugar without memorizing the carbohydrate content of a plethora of foods?

Healthy blood sugar levels should measure between 70 mg and 100 mg/dl under fasting conditions. It is important to note the conditions for healthy blood sugar levels, as they will vary greatly after eating food. After an 8 hour fast, all the sugar you’ve consumed will have been cleared by the liver and out of the bloodstream. This allows for a more accurate picture of your blood sugar levels without interference from the diet. Blood sugar levels that are elevated for long periods of time can be indicative of insulin resistance and other glucose-related conditions, while levels that are too low can also be harmful.

How supplements can support healthy blood sugar levels^

There are several choices you can make if you are trying to support your body’s natural blood sugar management. First, avoid foods that are rapidly digested can greatly reduce a rise in blood sugar. Foods with slow-release nutrients, meaning they are not easily or rapidly broken down in the body, result in a longer processing time and therefore enter the bloodstream at a slower, steady pace.4 Additionally, foods that contain a high amount of protein can also help as protein does not have a significant effect on blood sugar. Glucose Assist™, a novel blood sugar support supplement *, contains both slow-release nutrients and is a good source of protein. This uniquely designed, complete nutritional formula supports normal blood sugar levels already in a healthy range.*

The Checklist: How to Naturally Maintain Healthy Blood Sugar Levels^ with Nutrition

Through food and supplementation, when we’re healthy, we can effectively manage blood sugar levels in a healthy range. This can provide many benefits to the body and is flexible enough to allow for your individual needs.

  • Choose complex carbohydrates, especially as a replacement for simple sugars, swapping refined grains for whole grains
  • Reduce or eliminate added sugars from foods such as sugar sweetened beverages and highly processed foods
  • Include beans, lentils, nuts and oats in your diet to increase soluble fiber content which helps blunt spikes in blood sugar in response to food
  • Increase lean protein intake as it has little to no effect on blood sugar
  • Supplement with blood sugar support supplements that contain slow-release nutrients and good sources of protein



  1. Papakonstantinou, E., Oikonomou, C., Nychas, G., Dimitriadis, G.D. (2022). Nutrients, 14(4):823.
  2. Bonsembiante, L., Targher, G., Maffeis, C. (2021). 13(10):3344.
  3. Li, M., Chi, X., Wang, Y., Setrerrahmane, S., Xie, W., Xu, H. (2022). 7(1):216.
  4. Noronha, J.C., Mechanick, J.I. (2022). 13:874968.


*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease.

^already in a normal range