Millions of Americans are diabetic or pre-diabetic. It’s an epidemic that’s not only treatable, but preventable. What we eat helps. These foods that lower blood sugar are plant-based, effective and just also happen to be delicious.
9 Foods that Lower Blood Sugar
- Beans – They may just be the best plant-based food ever: protein, fiber, amino acids, vitamins, even healthy fats. And get this: beans and legumes slow the release of glucose (thanks to all the fiber), making them excellent in preventing blood sugar spikes.
- Tomatoes – Nothing tastes as scrumptious as a fresh, vine-ripened-right-in-your-garden tomato, right? And it turns out, it’s also one of the healthiest foods that lower blood sugar too. Gazpacho, anyone?
- Vinegar – It’s not just for salad dressing (or cleaning your house!). Vinegar has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels, particularly if consumed just before a meal. Mix 1-2 tablespoons with warm water and drink 30 minutes before a meal.
- Berries – As sweet as they are, berries are an excellent source of quercetin, which has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels. They’re also loaded with lots of other delicious nutrients. Enjoy them fresh or frozen, but never canned.
- Apples — An apple a day may not only keep the doctor away but also the insulin. Another quercetin-loaded fruit, apples can reduce the risk of diabetes and heart disease.
- Cinnamon – This may just be the blood sugar miracle food. Studies have shown that eating just a ½ teaspoon of cinnamon a day can make cells more sensitive to insulin and convert blood sugar into energy more easily.
- Bell Peppers – With more vitamin C than an orange, studies have pointed to a correlation between low vitamin C levels and diabetes.
- Citrus – For the same reason as bell peppers—adding C rich citrus fruits can aid in reducing blood sugar levels.
- Chocolate – This may seem counterintuitive—chocolate is often associated with being sweet—but research shows that cacao (raw chocolate, unsweetened) improves insulin sensitivity. And that is pretty sweet. Look for raw cacao beans, nibs or powder. Blend in a smoothie with fruits like berries for a natural sweetness that will help you keep your blood sugar goals.
Note: These recommendations are not medical advice and should not be used in place of medications or treatments prescribed by your doctor.
Berries image via Shutterstock