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Mark Macdonald teams up with the American Diabetes Association

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 12, 2011

The Power of Blood Sugar Stabilization

By Mark Macdonald

CBS Los Angeles:  Build ‘Body Confidence’ With Mark Macdonald’s Diet Tips

Mark Macdonald has been a pioneer in the nutrition and fitness industry for over 20 years.  He is the creator and CEO of Venice Nutrition, and author of the NY Times Best Selling Book, Body Confidence.

I have always found it interesting that we only start really talking about blood sugar when someone is diagnosed with diabetes.  Diabetes is a medical challenge when your body can no longer stabilize its blood sugar levels.  But what we’ve somehow forgotten is that everyone, diabetic or not, needs to stabilize his or her blood sugar to fuel the body with the necessary energy to survive.  The only difference is that diabetics may need the assistance of medication combined with solid nutrition to keep their blood sugar in balance.  My purpose with this article is to educate on how best to manage your blood sugar levels and provide you with the tools to turn your body into a fat-burning machine!

Lets first start with understanding blood sugar’s role in your body.  You see, glucose (or sugar) in your bloodstream is responsible for fueling your nervous system and creates the bulk of your body’s energy source: Adenosine Triphosphate, ATP, the same energy required for every movement you make.

By stabilizing blood sugar levels with the right nutrition, you create balance (homeostasis) within your body.  Your body then releases what it doesn’t need like stored body fat, toxins and excess sodium and protects your lean muscle mass to ignite your metabolism.

Here’s how it works. Whenever you over-eat or indulge in a carbohydrate-heavy meal, your blood sugar spikes (above 120 mg/ dl) and your body stores fat.

Just the opposite happens whenever you skip a meal, eliminating the carbohydrates and calories that your body needs to thrive or workout on an empty stomach.  Blood sugar levels drop too low (below 80 mg / dl) and your body is forced to burn lean muscle mass for fuel in place of body fat.  This loss of lean muscle slows your metabolism and makes it nearly impossible to reach your goals.

The fact is that though many people eat “healthily,” they fail to eat “correctly” and inadvertently spike and crash their blood sugar levels all day long!

Stabilizing your blood sugar (keeping levels between 80 and 120 mg/ dl throughout the day) will naturally help you look and feel your best.  You’ll optimize your workouts by giving your body the fuel it needs.   You’ll burn body fat, protect and increase lean muscle mass, eliminate sugar (carbohydrate) cravings, boost your energy and continually break through stubborn plateaus.   In short, stabilizing your blood sugar will help you to achieve your goals permanently!

The 3 Factors to Stabilize Your Blood Sugar:

  1. Meal Intervals – Your body is a “refuel as it goes” machine and needs to be fed consistently!  Eat one hour within waking (before exercise) to kick start your metabolism and then every 3 to 4 hours throughout the day until bedtime. Your last meal should fall within one hour of going to bed to help prepare your body for fasting.

Frequent meals will keep blood sugar levels steady and help to prevent you from overeating and spiking blood sugar or skipping a meal and causing blood sugar to drop too low.

2.  Nutrient Ratios – Each meal should have a balance of complete protein (animal or soy protein), with a small amount of healthy fat and a small amount of carbohydrates to keep blood sugar levels stable.  It is critical to get the correct nutrients (protein, carbohydrate and fat) in every meal.

3.  Meal Size – Your body can only process a certain amount of food at once and eating smaller meals every few hours will keep blood sugar levels steady. Each meal should be roughly the same size (same amount of calories).

Remember, every balanced meal you eat will stabilize your blood sugar to boost your metabolism, burn body fat, fuel your lean muscle, and increase your energy levels!  This is how you will take your body to the next level and achieve true Body Confidence (looking and feeling your very best)!

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