We’re all familiar with nutritional tips and stress management, or even going for a quick walk after a meal to balance blood sugar levels. Exercise physiologist, personal trainer and New York Times best selling author Ben Greenfield recently shared a trick to keep your blood sugar stable.
His explanation to a strange but effective way to prepare for a glucose spike is presented below.
An exercise physiologist’s method to balance blood sugar.
Greenfield is no stranger to the myriad advantages of cold therapy and embraces it for emotional well-being, physical health, and beyond. One of the ways he harnesses its benefits is by exposing himself to cold the morning before he knows he’ll eat a big meal, which can affect his blood sugar levels.
One of the things that he suggests you do before a big meal is exposing yourself to cold. “If you do a hefty 10 minutes in the ice tub the morning of Thanksgiving, Christmas, or a feasting day, your blood sugar will be down in the 50s and lower 60s until the early evening from that morning cold exposure,” he explains.
And that’s not the only metabolic benefit of cold therapy: Research shows that intermittent cold exposure activates the production of brown fat (a metabolically active form of fat tissue that burns energy to create heat and manage body temperature) and balance the glucose response.
Are there alternatives?
Of course, not everybody has the access (or willpower…) to sink into an ice bath. Not to worry: Greenfield says you can experience similar benefits from dunking your face into a bowl of ice water for 30 seconds or taking a cold shower. “Most of the benefits come from anywhere from 30 seconds to a maximum of 10 minutes of that cold exposure,” he explains. You can also reap some of those benefits from simply exercising outside in the cold; it doesn’t have quite as much of an impact as that cold water immersion, but it does have an effect. “If you go outside and exercise in the ambient air temperature, preferably 55 degrees or under, you’re getting some of the benefits,” he explains.
According to Greenfield, “There’s nothing that seems to control blood sugar more than cold.” If you know you’re about to have a big meal or indulge in sweets a little higher on the glycemic index, try the suggestions to preemptively balance those spikes.
That’s it for now, see you the next time my friends.