Blood Sugar Outta Whack? How to Balance your Hormones, Banish the Fat and Curb the Cravings!
October 20, 2021 - Episode #80 - Blood Sugar Outta Whack? How to Balance your Hormones, Banish the Fat and Curb the Cravings!
Blood sugar outta whack? I know what you are thinking. You are thinking..."Hey Jennifer, that doesn’t apply to me, I’m not Diabetic!" I hear you sis. At first glance you may think this topic doesn’t apply to you. Think again….your hormones, your metabolism, your cravings, your energy, your body efficiency and your clarity of mind are dependent on your blood sugar balance! That is what we are talking about today on the Healthy Harmony podcast...blood sugar balance. I’m revealing the secret to balancing your hormones, banishing the fat and curbing the cravings. Are you ready? Let’s do this!
In this podcast, you will hear about.....
You will be so surprised by what you learn today. But I know that you need more support than just a podcast can give. That’s why I’ve created the Functional Medicine for Weight Loss FB page. It’s body, mind, soul wellness for women. It is an incredibly supportive and encouraging community. And I do specific series on that page. On Monday, Oct 11th, we started a Break Up with Sugar series. This series runs through Oct 31st and provides daily posts, eye opening info, recipes and FB Lives. You don’t want to miss this. Join us and invite a friend or two. Completely free. You know it is time for you to break up with sugar! It’s had a hold on you for too long now. Access the FB group by going to bit.ly/FMwomenswellness
Join me next week as we take a deeper dive into insulin and insulin resistance!
Need some assistance getting your blood sugar under control? Book a one hour, virtual session. Click here https://healthyharmony.thrivecart.com/wellness-warrior-power-hour/
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October 20, 2021 - Episode #80 - Blood Sugar Outta Whack? How to Balance your Hormones, Banish the Fat and Curb the Cravings!
Is your blood sugar out of whack. I know, I know you're thinking, Hey Jennifer, this doesn't apply to me. I'm not diabetic. And I hear you say this at first glance. You may think this topic doesn't apply to me. Think again, your hormones, your metabolism, your cravings, your energy, your body efficiency, and your clarity of mind are dependent on blood sugar balance. And that is what we're talking about today on the healthy harmony podcast, blood sugar balance. I'm going to reveal the secret to balancing your hormones, banishing the fat, and curbing the cravings. Are you ready? Let's do this.
Welcome to the Healthy Harmony podcast. I'm Jennifer Pickett, Dietitian turned functional medicine, health coach. I help spiraling moms overcome the overwhelm through functional wellness coaching for the body, mind, and soul so that they can transform their health and live a deeply fulfilled life of freedom and harmony let's get real when it comes to your health, you know what to do.
I strongly believe that to make this shift from mellowing to doing you must supply mindfulness, listen to your body address. What's really driving that behavior. Be intentional and finally practice some self-compassion. The last 24 years of experience have taught me that the absolute last thing a woman needs is a lecture about self-care and another unrealistic diet plan. I recognize the importance of compassionate and intentional health practices. So you can feel good because guess what? When you feel good, you are more likely to make better decisions for your health. If you're ready to take control of your complete health, address the obstacles standing in your way and live a life of freedom and harmony you, my friend are in the right place.
You will be so surprised about what you learned today, but I know you need a little bit more support than just what a podcast can give. That's why I've created the functional medicine for weight loss, Facebook page it's body, mind, and soul wellness for women. That's right. Girls only, it's an incredibly supportive and encouraging community. And I do very specific series on that page just to help educate and encourage. And right now we are in the middle of a breakup with sugar series. This series started on October the 11th, and it's going to run through October 31st. You don't want to miss this. Okay? Join us. Invite a friend, a friend or two it's completely free. You know, it's time for you to break up with sugar. It's had a hold on you for way too long now. So access that Facebook group by going to Bitly forward slash fm women's wellness.
Now let's get into our hot topics. So let me give you a brief definition of what blood sugar is. So blood sugar also known as glucose is the main sugar found in your blood. It comes from the foods that you eat. It happens to be your body's main source of energy. So your body, excuse me, your blood carries glucose to all of your body's sales, to use for energy for your body to work efficiently. Your blood sugar needs to be maintained in a fairly narrow range. So when I say blood sugar balance, I want you to keep in mind. That just means that your blood sugar needs to be maintained in a fairly narrow range. Now, for most of you, your blood sugar is doing a roller coaster ride. It's going up and down and up and down and up and down. This affects how you feel, how efficiently your body loses, weigh your mental clarity, your mood, your metabolism, your energy level, and yes, even your cravings.
So if we're looking at blood sugar balance, we're looking at the endocrine system. Um, so what, what we eat is a very important source of energy, and it provides nutrients to the body's organs, the muscles and the nervous system. It's the job of the endocrine system to get it to where it's needed. So the absorption, the storage, the production of glucose is regulated constantly by very complex processes involving the small intestine, the liver and the pancreas. So these are known as the endocrine system, its main job is to keep the body in balance. So glucose enter some bloodstream after a person eats, mainly carbs, but any type of food, but it's specifically carbohydrates. And the endocrine system helps keep the bloodstreams and glucose levels in check using the pancreas. So this organ, the pancreas produces the hormone insulin. It releases insulin after a person can sames protein or carbohydrates, and the insulin sends excess glucose in the liver as glycogen.
So I'm not going to get into this too in detail, but I'm going to go into some very specific bags that you need to know that you need to understand. So you can see how blood sugar really does affect you. It affects all of us. So, you know, we think of blood sugar as just being related to diabetics and that cannot be further from the truth. But let me tell you having experience of working with a lot of diabetics, um, that diabetes is something we want to prevent. Y'all more and more people are getting diagnosed with diabetes. There's a lot of you you've been diagnosed with prediabetes. That means it's coming pay attention. So listen to this stat by the year 2030, the half of the population will be diabetic. That's a non-years in nine years, half of the population will be diabetic.
Here's my prediction. I think half of the population will be diabetic before the year 2030, um, because of the way things are going and there's is a lot of different reasons, but this is directly related to our lifestyle choices. So I'm talking about this and I'm referring to type two diabetes and it can be prevented. And it, if you have type two diabetes, it can be reversed. I'm working with a client right now. She's just incredible. Okay. This lady is amazing when she first came to me some bad habits in place, but she was so ready for change. And she had some very specific goals in mind. Um, she is a motorcycle rider and she's the coolest lady I've ever met. Um, so she was not checking she's diabetic. She was not checking her blood sugar. When we first started meeting, she was really not paying attention to what she was eating, doing some emotional eating, um, but also eating out a lot.
And she had some weight that she wanted to lose. Well, she got after it, we had been a great team working together and she's been checking her blood sugar. We have seen a tremendous improvement in her blood sugar. She has started changing what she eats. She's not eating out as much and she's cooking more at home. And she has lost, I think today at, I want to say it's like 18 pounds. So blood sugars under great control. Um, her hemoglobin A1C is, has been lowered, which is fantastic and she's lost weight and she feels good. So I am so excited for her, but it just shows you what happens when we start paying attention. Now she's diabetic. Okay. Um, so we knew what her blood sugar was doing. She had the tools to monitor her blood sugar. But what I want to emphasize to you today, if you're not diabetic, blood sugar is something you have to pay attention to.
So I want to talk first about blood sugar and hormone balance. Because if you want to balance your hormones, guess what you got to balance their blood sugar. Okay. So insulin is secreted from the pancreas in response to blood sugar. Insulin is the master hormone. Think of insulin as the master and commander, it shouts to the other hormones, what to do. So if you have high blood sugar, you're going to have high insulin levels because insulin levels tend to roughly mirror glucose levels. So if your glucose rises insulin follows. So if we can control glucose in the blood, we're going to have more success getting into a lower insulin, fat burning state. But let me tell you what happens when you have high insulin. This is going to lead to increased testosterone that throws estrogen out of balance. It also leads to increase adrenaline and cortisol levels.
This causes the body to deplete progesterone, and it leaves the body estrogen dominant quick note about estrogen dominance. If you're like me and you have a very significant, scary medical family, medical history of cancer, y'all a lot of our different types of cancer are dependent on hormones or hormone dependent cancers, meaning they grow and thrive in the presence of hormones. So we do not want to be estrogen dominant, whether you're a male or a female, you do not want to be estrogen dominant. Okay? So very important related to how you feel and how your body works efficiently, but very important for disease prevention. So back to some hormone balance, there's progesterone and progesterone helps to balance the blood sugar as opposed to estrogen. Estrogen tends to overstimulate the pancreas. When the pancreas is overstimulated by estrogen, the body will come, we'll become insulin resistant. Now we're going to dive into this topic in much greater detail next week.
So this week I'm focusing on blood sugar next week, I'm going to focus even more in depth on insulin and insulin resistance, because this is probably why you're not able to lose weight. It's probably why you're having trouble balancing your hormones. But for right now know this, if you're insulin resistant, even if you're exercising and eating the right foods, it is a very difficult if not impossible to lose weight. So keep in mind that if we want to lose weight, we've got to balance our blood sugar. So now let me give you a little bit of, uh, of information about blood sugar and weight management. So how our body uses energy. So the foods that we eat, how our body uses, that is much, much more complex than what most people are seeing. And it's influenced by a number of interdependent pathways. Insulin is a key hormone involved in fat storage and weight gain.
And when insulin levels are elevated, it impairs the body's ability to burn fat for energy. I'm going to repeat that when insulin levels are elevated. So when glucose is elevated, insulin is elevated. It impairs the body's ability to burn fat. Hello? I don't want anything impairing my body's ability to burn fat. I'm trying here, right? I don't need anything else standing in my way. So it's something we really want to look at now. Insulin is, is a main anabolic hormone, meaning that it promotes building in the body. So storage of fat, rather than breaking things down, insulin tells our sales to take up glucose from the blood for use, or if there's excess to store it, that's the problem, right? We have excess blood sugar. The body is storing it as fat because weight loss requires us to burn through fat stores. We need to control our blood sugar and thereby control our insulin to signal the body that it should burn fat rather than store it.
Here's the bottom line. When we're looking at blood sugar balance, when we're looking at insulin, we need to get our body working efficiently. A body that's working efficiently is a body that is imbalanced. And that is a body that is in prime condition to release the fat stores that it's been holding onto. So let's talk a little bit about cravings, cause you're like, okay, Jennifer, I get it. I hear you about blood sugar, but you don't understand. I feel like I'm addicted to sugar. Well, girl, there's a good chance that you are, guess what? They did that on purpose. Remember the health companies? Well, the health companies, the food companies, the big pharma companies, they're all in bed together. I hope y'all are seeing this. And um, I won't go off on that, but for lack of time, um, cause you know, I want to, but uh, the reality is that they don't care about your health.
They care about selling you something. Sugar is addicting. We know that the appetite for sugar is hardwired. Sweet is the first taste that humans prefer from both from birth. Think about a baby, eating, maybe food. Guess what they like the most. They like the sweeter fruit wins. And there's also things that happen in the brain. When we consume sugary foods and processed carbohydrates, it gives you like a little immediate high. So it stimulates the release of serotonin that feel good brain chemical and the taste of sugar also releases endorphins, the re the endorphins that calm and relax us again, giving us that and legal high and we're addicted to that. Okay. So that's the science, you and I both know the cold, hard truth. We eat sugar because it tastes good. It's delicious. And then what happens the more you eat, the more you crave.
So you just keep going back for more. So it's amazing because it just so happens. The food companies that are selling these products, they know about this, they know about the addictive properties of sugar that they keep adding more and more. So you keep buying more and more because you're hooked so many food items have hidden sugar. So right now I don't even know the exact number because the number keeps increasing as time goes on. But last count there's 66 names for hidden sugar. So when you're looking at a label, you say, you can just say, oh, sugar. Oh, okay. Well now there's all these different names to describe sugar because they don't want to adjust. You know, so they're trying to hide it from us. And the reality is that we're just consuming too much sugar. The more you eat is the more you will crave.
And the reality, like I said before, is that your blood sugar is doing a roller coaster ride during the day you're going without eating. And then you ate a bunch of processed carbohydrates. What goes up your blood sugar response? It skyrockets, what goes up must come down. Then it bottoms out when your blood sugar bottoms out, what happens? Your body sends up a biochemical response saying, I need something. I need something. It needs glucose because your blood sugar is bottomed out and you start craving sweets. So what do you do? You're feeling kind of tired and sluggish. So you are reaching for caffeine, you're reaching for something with sugar, um, to pick yourself up off the floor. And it's a never-ending cycle. We don't feel good, but also we're just wreaking havoc in our body. The other thing that I just want to, I want you to make a very quick note of is that blood sugar plays a very important role with mental clarity.
So glucose is one of the main sources of fuel for your brain. So if you've got your blood sugar all at a whack, you're not going to be feeling very clearheaded. Here's, what's interesting. They have started calling Alzheimer’s type three diabetes. Isn't that significant they're calling Alzheimer's type three diabetes. Y'all all of this stuff. All of these diseases are related, which means if we can address the root issue, we're going to look better and we're going to take our health into our own hands. And we're not going to wait on anybody else. We're going to take our health into our own hands. So I love to experiment. Y'all know I'm a dork. I love to do the research. I love to give you that research when it's been broken down into something a little bit easier to understand, but I also like to experiment about myself.
So I'm on a health journey like everyone else. And I'm like, okay, what's the deal. As I get older, it's much harder to lose weight. What am I missing? So I'm tracking several things. So one thing that I've started using here recently is a continuous blood glucose monitor. Now I know a lot of you are like, wait a minute. She's not diabetic. Like, how does that work? Why would you use something like that? Well, it's giving me a lot of insight. First of all, I firmly believe when you start being more mindful, you start being more intentional. So it's made me be a lot more intentional about really closely looking at what I'm putting in my body. Um, the timing of what I put in my body, but also the combination of foods that I'm putting in my body and what affects my blood sugar.
So there's just an element of bio individuality here. So something that may not affect you as much could affect me and vice versa. So, uh, continuous glucose monitoring has become just a little bit more popular here recently. And I'm all about a good experiment. I'm like, sign me up. I'll do it. I'm curious what my body's doing and why it seems to be a little bit resistant when it comes to losing some weight. What can I address here and how can I be in the best shape possible when it comes to balancing my hormones? So I did try one company. There are several companies out there. Uh, the ones that are the main ones that are the most popular right now are January AI, nutria sense and levels. Okay. Now these are mainly for people that are not diabetic. If you're diabetic, in all reality, your, uh, insurance company is going to cover a continuous blood glucose monitor, uh, highly encourage you get it covered experiment and, and okay.
And do that. Okay. So a continuous glucose monitor is something you wear on your arm and, um, and it's giving you continuous information. Okay. So I just, I wear this little monitor, uh, hold my phone up and I'm in, it tells me what my glucose is, but it also tells me what it was an hour ago and three hours ago, et cetera. So I can see the variations. And there's a few things you're looking for there now. Um, if you're not wearing a continuous glucose monitor, another way to get an indication of your blood sugar at that moment in time is to do a finger prick and put it in a little glucose monitor. So there is one online called Kito mojo. And this is if you want to prick your finger, see what your blood sugar is, you can test it when you're fasting.
You can also test it one and a half to two hours after you've eaten to see how your blood sugar responds to that particular meal. Um, so that's always a great idea. I really like I went to, I've bought the keto mojo first cause I was like, I'm going to have this on hand. Um, I have a feeling I've got some blood sugar issues, but I kind of want to experiment and check this out, but the fingerprint gets a little bit old. Right. So I heard about these continuous glucose monitors. The first one I tried was January am. Now they're all using the same device, uh, which this one was from Abbott, the freestyle Libre. Um, which sounds like a condom. I'm sorry. It does, but it's a continuous blood glucose monitor. Um, so, uh, you wear it and, uh, January AI, I did not, uh, I did not like the app at all.
The app was horrible and there was no support like none whatsoever. So did not like that company. Um, uh, the one I'm using right now is neutri- sense. Again, it's using the same monitor. They had a fantastic app. And for the first month, if you do it, you can do it for, uh, several different, you know, time periods. But, uh, you get the services of a dietician for the first month and that's been very, very helpful. Y'all I don't know everything. I have 25 years of experience. I am a dietician. I'm a functional medicine, health coach. I have a master's degree, but I have a lot to learn. And so it's been very helpful having the dietitian look at my numbers and give me some insight. So, um, I do like neutral stance and then levels, uh, is also another company with continuous glucose monitors.
And they are very, um, uh, they're, uh, very well-known and I think they're very, very good. So, um, if you're curious about these tools, let me know, let's have a conversation about it. Um, nutrients, um, is talking to me and I'm trying to see if I can offer some kind of discount for my listeners. So that is in works. Stay tuned on that, but sense is my favorite one. And that's the one I'm using right now. The other thing that, um, that I'm wearing my kids make fun of me is I'm wearing my aura ring O U R A. And that is tracking every aspect of my sleep, like giving me all kinds of detailed information. So I'm just a walking experiment right now, but I love it because it's helping me learn about my body and it's helping me to be mindful. So that's my experience with continuous glucose monitors and what I'm doing to track my sleep right now.
Um, so what you need to understand that brought up slate for a specific reason. There's a lot of things that are affecting your glucose level. And, um, it's important to understand this does go beyond nutritionists. It goes beyond the foods that you eat. That's very, very important, do not misunderstand, but your blood glucose is also affected by illness. It's affected by sleep. It's affected by stress. It's affected by hydration, um, and it's affected by insulin resistance. And so there's some, sometimes we just need to help our body turn some things around. It's so important that we adopt this mentality of getting to the root of the issue. So, um, another thing that I want you to consider when it comes to blood sugar balance is the fact that there's, um, that we have to look at what we're putting in our mouth on a daily basis because food intake is so important.
And so often we're so busy, we're so stressed and we're just shoving something in, and we're not thinking twice about how it could be affecting us. Now, I know, I know if you're listening to me, you're very similar to me in that you got a lot going on, says you've got stuff to do. People depending on you, you need energy. Let me tell you if your blood sugar is doing a roller coaster ride, you feel tired and sluggish and worn out. You do not have good energy. So if you want energy, you want your blood sugar to be in balance. So as we wrap up today, I want to talk about five things that you can do to keep your blood sugar imbalance. Number one, food combined. So very, very important. Um, when you food combined, um, it's going to help with your blood sugar response.
So when I say that, what I mean is that when you eat, I want you to combine foods that contain protein, fiber, and fat, so that protein is good, healthy protein, um, clean sources of protein and fiber is going to come from my vegetables and fruit. And then, um, fat, healthy fats. You need healthy fat. So when we food combined, it kind of slows down the digestion and absorption. So this is very, very strategic. So what you're going to do is make sure that you food combined. So instead of eating, if you're going to have a snack, for instance, you're not going to just have an apple by itself because that would just be, you know, a little bit of fiber, some healthy carbs. Um, you want, you want to slow it down a little bit. So you're going to add some, all Ben better.
Okay. And when we food combined, it slows down digestion and absorption, and it minimizes that roller coaster effect on our blood sugar. Most of you are not having enough protein or healthy fats. You're eating way too much processed carbs. And then you wonder why you feel like you need to be scraped up off the sidewalk. Okay? Look at what you're eating for breakfast. Are you eating cereal on that step on toes? Are you eating cereal with milk for breakfast? That's all carbs. I don't care. What's on that box. They've done a really good job marketing that cereal to where you think it's healthy, but milk is carbohydrates. Okay. It's mostly carbs. Yes. It has some protein. Yes. It has some fat. It's mostly carbs. And that cereal. I don't care if it is organic. I don't care if it is marketed to look like it's healthier.
Y'all you dump all of that in your system. All of those carbs, no wonder you're crashing around 10:00 AM and you feel like you can't concentrate. You're tired. You're reaching for caffeine. Like you can't get anything done. Okay. So breakfast cereal is one of the worst things we can do to ourselves. Have some protein, have some healthy fat. Um, it makes all the difference in the world. So always food combined. It doesn't matter if it's a snack. If it's lunch, if it's dinner, if it's breakfast, always food combined, protein, fiber, and fat. Number two, watch out for added sugar. You heard me say earlier, they love to add sugar. In the best way we can avoid added sugar is to avoid processed foods. The foods that have a marketing team, the foods that are in the middle of the grocery store. Now I'm not talking about all the time.
I'm not saying you can never have something again. I'm just talking about a vast majority of the time. You're focused on those real whole foods, those foods that give you so much nutritional benefit. It's crazy. Okay. So watch out for that added sugar, because remember the more sugar you eat, the more you crave, uh, number three, you got to address gut health. Now this is a whole other topic and I've got a gut health expert coming on in the next few weeks, uh, as a podcast guest. So stay tuned for that. But if you're worried about sugar cravings and you feel like you can't get on top of your sugar cravings, you've got to address gut health. I can help you do that. Okay. Um, number four, address vitamin and mineral deficiency. You know, our tendency is to address this simply by supplementation. Like what pill can I take?
Give me the quick fix. And supplementation does play a very key role that we have got to focus on real whole foods. How can we optimize our nutrition? If you'll notice, like, just start being very mindful about what you're putting in, what you're purchasing when it comes to groceries, is it all processed? Well, then you're going to feel like cried, right? But if you're focusing on getting in a lot of those plants, those fresh vegetables, that fresh fruit, um, and some good high-quality sources of protein and healthy fats, that's giving your body exactly what it needs. You're going to feel much better when you can turn around that vitamin and mineral deficiency, uh, and family number five, get some sleep. That's right. How many times have you heard me say this? A bunch, right? When you don't get good sleep, your blood sugar will be out of balance when you don't get good sleep the next day, not only do you feel kind of down and depressed, not only do you feel tired, you're hungrier because your horn, your hunger hormone ghrelin is increased.
Um, so you're hungry. You're and you're craving something, but are you crave? You crave sweets. So we've got to get some sleep. If we're worried about blood sugar balance, we've got to get some sleep. So I hope you have found this helpful, the five main areas that I want you to focus on. If you're focusing on getting your blood sugar in balance, number one, food, combined, protein, fiber, and fat, number two, be aware of those added sugars, stick to real foods, real whole foods. Number three, address, gut health, number four, address vitamin and mineral deficiency. Number five, get some sleep, SIS. Okay. Those are the five keys right there. And guess what? You don't have to do it alone. You might be like, okay, Jennifer, I don't even know where to start. I have no idea. Um, yeah. I might be interested in wearing a glucose monitor or checking my glucose or, I mean, I don't even know what to, how to address a vitamin mineral deficiency or how to address gut health.
That's why I've got, that's why I'm here. Okay. So I do offer those one hour sessions. If you need to book, let me know. Um, I can put the link right here in the show notes. And I want you to understand that the purpose of today's podcast was simply to open your eyes so that you would kind of say, okay, I need to pay attention to blood sugar balance to give you the secret that you need to know. If you want to lose weight, balance, your hormones, or banish your sugar cravings to help you be mindful so that you can be more intentional with your choices the next week, like I said, we're continuing this conversation. We're going to go even more in depth on insulin and insulin resistance. So stay tuned until then have a sweet day. Bye ya’ll