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Concerned about your blood sugar? Fermented foods can help

Fermented foods can be your new ally in balancing your blood sugar. 

Scientific evidence shows that maintaining stable blood sugar levels is key for maintaining health. Constant fluctuations in blood sugar, especially prolonged periods of high blood sugar, can increase the risk of developing diabetes and other metabolic disorders. Fortunately, there's a delicious way to support blood sugar balance – through the consumption of fermented foods.


How does food affect blood sugar levels? 

Glucose is a type of sugar that serves as the body's main source of energy, derived from the food we eat, especially foods rich in carbohydrates. The sugar enters the bloodstream after digestion — the concentration of glucose in the bloodstream is what we know as blood sugar levels.

The body needs to maintain blood sugar levels within a certain range for optimal functioning. Insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas, helps regulate blood sugar levels by facilitating the uptake of glucose into cells for energy or storage.

When blood sugar levels are too high, insulin helps lower them by moving glucose out of the bloodstream and into cells, where glucose is used as the energy source to support essential functions. Conversely, when blood sugar levels drop too low, other hormones like glucagon signal the body to release stored glucose to raise them back up.


Blood sugar affects your physical and mental wellbeing

Our blood sugar levels are constantly fluctuating in response to various factors. However, frequent or significant fluctuations can disrupt multiple aspects of our physical and mental wellbeing: 

  • Energy levels: Blood sugar serves as the primary source of energy for your body's cells. When blood sugar levels are too low, you may experience symptoms of hypoglycemia, such as fatigue, weakness and difficulty concentrating. Heard of the after-lunch slump? This is due to blood sugar levels spiking after a heavy meal, leaving you feeling lethargic, sluggish, and mentally foggy. Stable blood sugar levels help maintain consistent energy levels throughout the day!
  • Physical health: Prolonged or frequent fluctuations in blood sugar levels can increase the risk of developing chronic health conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and metabolic syndrome.
  • Mood stability: Low blood sugar levels can lead to irritability, anxiety, mood swings, and difficulty coping with stress. High blood sugar levels may cause feelings of irritability, frustration, and low mood.
  • Cognitive function: Your brain relies on a steady supply of glucose to function optimally. Significant fluctuations in blood sugar levels can impair cognitive function, including memory, concentration, and decision-making abilities. 


Fermented foods provide a triple benefit

Fermented foods like sauerkraut and kimchi are rich in dietary fiber, which slows down the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream. Fiber acts as a natural buffer as the human body is unable to absorb and break it down, thus preventing rapid spikes in blood sugar after meals. By adding fermented foods into your diet, you get the benefit of the fiber buffer.

On top of that, you are getting beneficial bacteria that have been shown to support your microbiome in metabolizing sugar.

Finally, many fermented foods have a low or medium glycemic index (GI), meaning that the body absorbs and breaks them down more slowly which can help reduce spikes and dips in blood sugar.

Made up of six vegetables, our kimchi is rich in nutrients and fiber that can support blood sugar balance in a flavorful way. We adapted the traditional recipe to be extra healthy by excluding added sugar or processed ingredients.  

Starting to eat kimchi is easy and there are so many ways to add it to your diet: Simply eat kimchi straight from the jar, top your toast, or add it into stews, rice, pasta and more — it may just be your new favorite ally! 





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