I read your post on Irony and you said you tested your blood sugar levels and the closer to 80mg you could keep your levels 2 hours post meal the leaner you were able to get. I started this experiment – my plan is for 30 days – give or take. I just started here is what I got:
Post 2 eggs and black coffee (cooking spray used): 103
Post walnuts: 87
Post sausage (grilled) and cauliflower (mashed – lemon pepper and a bit of smart balance): 107
Post chicken (pan seared) and asparagus (steamed): 109
What do you think? I’d like to get as close to 80mg as I can – this is EXACTLY what I ate. Can you give me some feedback on how I can get my levels lower? I live a Paleo lifestyle – but I do have agave and I was eating fruit – but not the last two days. I started testing today.
Thanks for any insight.
I knew when I wrote that I was going to start getting these emails. I have avoided this topic because this has nothing to do with being strong and fast. This has less to do with performance but more with health. If you are 165 lbs and reading this and thinking, I want to try this, stop and go watch the 13 Warrior. See the part where Antonio Banderas can’t life the sword and the big Viking tells him to “grow stronger.” Then remember it is perfectly acceptable for a grown man who lifts weights to have body fat. Words like lean are used to describe filet mignon and 13 year old Ambercrombie & Fitch models, not grown men.
*Let me start by getting the legal stuff out of the way. I am not a doctor, a medical practitioner or licensed physician. I am a former NFL football player that has spent a whole life training and eating for performance. Anything I say or do is anecdotal and is not meant to cure any diseases. I am not liable for anything you do that was discussed on this site. I am a trained professional; do not attempt this at home.
Look at what spikes blood sugar. Everything spikes blood sugar to some degree. It just so happens that some foods spike sugar to a great level than others. And it also just so happens, that habitually low blood sugar levels are synonymous with a disease free, healthy body.
Rewind to 2002, I am having a conversation with a friend, Tom Incledon, from Human Performance Specialists in Tempe, AZ. Tom is a former strongman and Ph.D and generally one of the smartest people I know. I have a few people I contact when I have questions…between Robb, Mat, Tom and Jeoff Drobot, I am covered.
Tom told me of an experiment he did where they monitored blood sugar levels of an athlete and found combinations of foods that allowed him to eat mass quantities and not spike blood sugar levels above 90. They found that keeping him between 80-90 worked to keep his body fat very low.
I decided to get a blood glucose meter and give it a shot. Through frequent testing, I was able to find out my blood sugar levels peaked between 80-90 minutes and what foods worked well to keep my blood sugar in range. I also found certain foods and supplements that were able to control blood sugar.
I found fresh cinnamon, mulberry extract, fish oil, alpha lipoic acid and vitamin D were contributors to keeping blood sugar in check. Fresh cinnamon (and I mean fresh cinnamon, no old stuff) worked the best to control my blood sugar levels.
So, I ended up putting cinnamon on everything. I took 5000 ius of Vit D, 5-6 grams of fish oil and the alpha lipoic acid in the morning and night.
I found gluten, fruit, processed foods with starch or foods with ingredients I could not pronounce and some dairy products increased blood sugar above where I wanted it. I found sugar, whether it is sucrose, fructose, HFCS, agave or maple syrup all had similar effects, with HFCS being the worst.
A bunch of grapes had the same effect as a candy bar. Wheat was really rough on blood sugar and Chinese food about killed me. I also ended my 25 year love affair with cereal…I still miss Kracklin’ Oat Bran. Nonfat milk had the same effect as sugar. Which makes sense, since the reduced fat relates to increased absorption time. Fermented dairy, like Greek yogurt and raw cheese, had a lesser effect.
Any caffeine caused blood sugar to spike, as caffeine increases the stress hormone, cortisol, which translates to increase blood sugar. One of the primary functions of cortisol is to increase blood sugar.
I found exercise after a large meal brought blood sugar down to range. I ended up taking a walk after eating most nights. This was simple, as I was living in Philadelphia and walking the dog was fun.
I also found the lower my body fat got, the easier it was to control my blood sugar. Now, before you guys run out buying up glucose meters screaming you want to be lean, remember this…I did not say lean, I said low body fat…big difference. I was weighing about 315 lbs when I started using the glucose meter and I scored a 8.6% body fat in the BodPod at 306 lbs. That is over 280 lbs of LBM.
There is no right or wrong answer to your question. You are going to have to baseline your blood sugar. That means test it every 15 minutes for 2 hours and chart when blood sugar peaks. Once you establish this, check your blood sugar after meals. You find what works and what does not. You eliminate foods until you are left with those foods that do not spike blood sugar above your desired range. If you have a new meal, check your BS and if it spikes you can take a long walk to bring it back in range.
There is an excellent site, run by Dr. William Davis, called Heart Scan Blog. He discusses findings on blood sugar and the glucose meter being the window to good health. He is a cardiologist in Wisconsin. Check it out, I highly recommend it.
Hope that helps.