Thursday, June 2, 2011

Thursday Tips: Want better blood sugar levels?

Get better sleep!
Image: Boaz Yiftach /

With a personal history of insulin resistance, I make an effort to do things that keep my blood sugar levels stable and me healthy. Two separate studies have now confirmed that a particular stage of stage of sleep, called slow-wave sleep is critical to the proper functioning of your body's insulin sensitivity, which is the measure of the body's ability to convert blood sugar to energy.

Here's some bad news though: Even if you are getting the recommended eight hours of sleep, you may not be getting enough time in the slow-wave sleep stage to reap the benefits on your insulin sensitivity. Even worse, researchers theorize that getting more than eight hours doesn't help the situation either.

So what can you do to help your body get into this much needed sleep stage?

A few known influencing factors are:
  • Body heating, such as immersion in a hot tub or a hot shower
  • Consuming a small snack high in carbohydrates an hour before bed
  • Exercise

Lower Blood Sugar, Improve Insulin Sensitivity
Slow-Wave Sleep on Wikipedia