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6. Green Tea
This drink is so loaded with healthy benefits, that it’s hard to know where to start. Green tea has an important antioxidant called EGCG, which improves the flexibility of blood vessels and stabilizes blood sugar levels. The University of Pennsylvania did a study that showed that this antioxidant prevents a sharp rise in glucose after a high-carb meal and reduces blood sugar levels overall. Try adding 3 to 4 cups each day of freshly brewed green tea.
All types of seeds, including sunflower, pumpkin, and sesame seeds, are full of healthy fats, protein, and fiber. All of these things work together to keep your blood sugar low and fight off heart disease. Seeds have sterols, which naturally lower cholesterol levels. Fill a small tin (such as an Altoids tin) with some healthy seeds and stick it in your purse, pocket, or glove box in case you have a snack emergency. You can also forgo the croutons on your salad and sprinkle some pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds on it for a healthy, tasty change of pace!
Legumes include foods such as peas, beans, lentils, and chickpeas. These foods are low in fat and calories but are rich in fiber, protein, and tons of healthy vitamins and minerals. Fiber slows the rate at which sugar is absorbed into the blood, so it reduces the overall glycemic load. Think bean burritos for dinner, add a handful of beans to a salad, or add some peas to your favorite soup. You can’t go wrong with legumes!
This list just gets better and better, doesn’t it? Nuts are high in both fiber and protein, which makes them a “slow burning” type of food that’s a good choice when it comes to blood sugar levels. Yes, nuts contain quite a bit of fat, but it’s the healthy, monounsaturated kind. Roasting really brings out the flavor in nuts, which makes them terrific as a snack, or as an addition to many entrees and vegetable dishes. Try adding just one ounce of your favorite nut to your daily diet.
10. Green Veggies
The British Medical Journal conducted a study in which green vegetables, such as spinach, cabbage, lettuce, kale, Swiss chard, celery, cucumbers, and green beans, were found to contain a special type of carbohydrate that stimulates the release of hormones that reduce appetite. These scientists also found that green vegetables in particular improved insulin sensitivity, which helps to regulate glucose levels in the blood. They also have healthy antioxidants, and many vegetables are rich source of magnesium, a mineral that is vital to controlling blood sugar.
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