Hypoglycemia, otherwise known as low blood sugar levels, is a situation where the blood sugar level is less than 70mg/dL. Anyone can suffer from low blood sugar levels due to a poor diet, but it is a problem that affects diabetic patients more than the rest of the population.
Signs and symptoms
- Feeling shaky
- Colour draining from the skin
- Feeling sleepy
- Nightmares or crying out during sleep
So what causes low blood sugar levels?
In diabetic patients, it can be caused by skipping a meal, exercising too much, taking too much insulin, or consuming alcohol. In nondiabetic patients, it can be caused by a poor diet, a diet that doesn’t contain the right amount of calories, or simply skipping a meal.
Hypoglycemia can be as mild as a simple inconvenience or as severe as a life-threatening situation. It is, therefore, imperative to know how to raise blood sugar levels quickly, safely, and healthily before it becomes a medical emergency. What you eat is key. What you eat is essential, whether it be to raise or lower or maintain your blood sugar levels.
7 Healthy Ways to Raise Low Blood Sugar Levels
Here are some tips on what to eat to quickly and safely raise your blood sugar levels:
1. Glucose tablets, glucose shots, and glucose gel
For severe hypoglycemia (a blood sugar level below 54mg/dL), it is advised you take 15 grams of a fast-acting carbohydrate to raise your blood sugar levels, then check them after 15 minutes.
If, after the first dose, your blood sugar levels are still below 70mg/dL, repeat the treatment till it is above 70mg/dL.
Glucose tablets, gels, or shots are the most common fast-acting carbohydrates and are usually packed to deliver 15 grams per serving. So you can keep track of how much sugar you consume.
If you don’t have a rapid-acting form of glucose handy, you can opt for candy, but stay away from chocolate.
The fat in chocolate slows down glucose absorption, and the body needs glucose. You can take hard candy or chewy ones; just make sure you read the label so you know just how many will give you the 15 grams of sugar you need.
3. Fresh or dried fruits
Fruits have carbohydrates and a natural form of sugar called fructose which can raise your blood sugar levels.
Fructose is the primary sugar found in fruit. It is quickly taken up by the liver, converted to glucose, and released into the bloodstream.
Fruits like bananas, apples, raisins, and oranges are well recommended to raise blood sugar levels.
4. Fruit juice
Fruit juice contains a lot of sugar and has a shallow fiber content, which makes absorption by the body quicker. This is helpful when you need a really quick boost in blood sugar levels quickly.
Honey is a thick golden liquid produced by honey bees and other insects. One tablespoon of raw honey has about 60 calories and 17 grams sugar.
Honey is also natural sugar and full of antioxidants. Researchers found that in a group of people with diabetic patients, honey caused an increase in blood sugar in 30 minutes.
This makes honey perfect for raising blood sugar levels.
6. Fat-free milk
Drinking fat-free milk is another healthy way to raise your blood sugar level.
High-fat foods take longer to absorb into your bloodstream, and because of this, they won’t raise your blood sugar as quickly as foods that have more simple carbohydrates.
However, fat-free milk contains vitamin D and simple carbohydrates, which helps to raise sugar level healthily.
7. Gummy bears
Gummy bears are loaded with simple sugars and are sure to shoot up your blood glucose levels.
Some medical experts recommend that you take 4 to 12 gummy bears to increase your blood sugar levels.
Having a low blood sugar level for an extended period can starve the brain of much-needed glucose, leading to seizures, comas, and rarely death. It is, therefore, essential to raise your blood sugar levels as quickly as possible. The human body is strong but, at the same time, fragile. To get the best from it, we must give it the best.