As a food consultant, private chef and qualified nutritionist, I know first hand how there’s many signs your blood sugar is imbalanced. These symptoms include:
You have excess belly fat (and struggle to lose it): Insulin resistance means that instead of being shuttled into your cells, glucose from carbs and sugar are stored as fat. This often shows up around the waist and can be difficult to lose. So if you are carrying weight around your tummy and wonder why this is, imbalanced blood sugars could well be the culprit here!
You constantly crave sugar and carbs: Your body wants energy and it wants it NOW. Sugar and carbohydrates are the fastest way to get a hit. A poor diet means you’re less satisfied between meals, which is why you always want to run to the vending machine at work or crave sugary treats in the evening! Those cravings are never satisfied, and you always seem to want more. What’s more, dessert is a daily need and this is a tell tale sign that your blood sugars are imbalanced.
It’s bad news when you miss a meal: One word here; hangry! Hungry + angry is a bad combination and don’t we all know it! If you work friends avoid you or your family hides (all because you’ve missed a meal and know what your mood will be like), think again! Mood swings and irritability are often caused by low blood sugar. You may also feel jittery or lightheaded if you haven’t eaten as well. This also leads to overeating, binge eating, and major carb cravings, and the cycle continues. And goes on and on, and on!!
You’re always tired and have low energy: Meals don’t make you feel energised? Still peeling yourself out of bed after a full-night’s sleep? If so, it’s time to take a look at what you’re eating and how well it’s balanced. A good meal should make you feel great.
You have hypothyroidism, adrenal fatigue, or another hormone imbalance: Chronically imbalanced blood sugar affects our stress hormones, too. Cortisol increases to help your body deal with the stress of high blood sugar, and ‘chronically elevated cortisol’ comes with its own cascade of health problems. Watch out!
You get colds easily: Poor diet and stress are often the underlying reasons why you’re the one stuck catching a cold every season. Whether it’s emotional, physical with elevated blood sugar and cortisol, our Vitamin C stores deplete under stress. If you aren’t getting enough Vitamin C through your diet, you are far more susceptible to getting sick.
You struggle to concentrate: This is yet another sign of low blood sugar. If brain fog rolls in and you have a hard time focusing on work, that’s when you know it’s been too long between meals. Alternatively, it could mean that the meal you did eat wasn’t well balanced with protein, fat, and fibre.
You have trouble falling or staying asleep: Eating too close to bed can affect your sleep quality. If blood sugar is high around bedtime, you’ll find it hard to fall asleep. Alternatively, if you’ve eaten too close to bedtime, once you finally digest your meal and insulin has done its job, blood sugar drops back down, and you’ll likely wake up as cortisol works to bring it back to a stable level.
You suffer from depression and/or anxiety: Blood sugar imbalances may not be the only contributor towards mental health issues, but they can exacerbate symptoms by affecting gut health and hormonal health. Your gut is where serotonin is produced, so if sugar is affecting the healthy bacteria in your gut, symptoms of depression and anxiety can become enhanced.
Still suffer with acne as an adult: Just as your microbiome is largely responsible for your mental health, it is also related to skin health. You may have noticed when you eat certain foods and they show up in some way on your face later on. Acne is a condition of inflammation, which occurs when sugar in your diet fuels the growth of yeast and bacteria in the gut.
Your blood tests show nutrient deficiencies: Your body uses up important nutrients to digest the food you eat. If the food you eat is devoid of nutrients (like many processed foods that are high in sugar and carbs), the ones you’re using to digest aren’t being replenished. There are too many ways nutrient deficiencies can manifest for me to list them here, but several are related to blood sugar regulation. More on that below.
You deal with embarrassing gas, uncomfortable bloating, and other digestive issues: A diet high in sugar affects your microbiome, meaning the healthy balance of bacteria in your gut. This can result in conditions like leaky gut, dysbiosis, and candida overgrowth. Additionally, if your gut isn’t functioning properly, food can take much longer to digest. This can cause odious gas and bloating as it sits in the stomach waiting to be processed.
You have high cholesterol: Cholesterol is a good thing, but in the right amount. It protects our cells and acts as a gatekeeper, letting the good stuff in and keeping the bad stuff out. If we keep feeding ourselves “bad” stuff (processed, high-carb, high-sugar foods, etc.), more cholesterol is needed to protect the cell from it all, so it rises.