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As the largest organ of the body, the skin is a reflection of our overall health and well-being. While many factors can impact skin health, one that is often overlooked is blood sugar control. When blood sugar levels are high, it can lead to a cascade of reactions that can damage your skin in different ways. Acne, premature aging, and skin infections are a few of the impacts that high blood sugar levels can have on our skin.
High Blood Sugar and Skin Aging
High blood sugar levels can accelerate the aging process of our skin. When blood sugar levels are high, excess glucose can attach to collagen and elastin fibers in the skin through a process called glycation. This can lead to the formation of advanced glycation end products (AGEs), which can damage collagen and elastin fibers. Collagen and elastin are the proteins that provide structure and elasticity to your skin. When these proteins are damaged, your skin can become more prone to wrinkles, fine lines, and sagging.
High Blood Sugar and Acne
Acne is a common skin problem that can be exacerbated by high blood sugar levels. High levels of blood sugar induce an increase in insulin production, which can cause an overproduction of sebum. Sebum is an oily substance produced by your skin that can clog your pores and lead to acne. In addition, high blood sugar levels can also cause inflammation in your skin, which can worsen acne.
High Blood Sugar and Skin Infections
High blood sugar levels can also weaken your immune system, making it more difficult for your body to fight off infections. This can increase your risk of developing skin infections, such as cellulitis, a bacterial infection that can cause redness, swelling, and pain in your skin. In addition, high blood sugar levels can also lead to a weakened skin barrier, making it easier for bacteria and other harmful substances to penetrate your skin.
How to Manage Blood Sugar for Better Skin Health
Maintaining healthy blood sugar levels is essential for clear, radiant, and youthful skin. Diet, exercise, and tools like GOOD IDEA are three ways to regulate our blood sugar for glowing skin.
Balancing Blood Sugar With Diet
Since carbohydrates have the greatest impact on blood sugar levels, limiting or balancing carbohydrate intake is an essential step in managing glucose levels. Increasing our fiber intake or pairing carbohydrates with a protein can both help to slow the absorption of carbohydrates and reduce the associated spike in blood sugar levels. Additionally, swapping refined carbohydrates for complex carbohydrates can increase our nutrient intake while simultaneously reducing blood sugar.
Balancing Blood Sugar With GOOD IDEA
When we are in an environment where we are not in control of the menu or when we are about to eat a meal that is higher in carbohydrates, GOOD IDEA can help. Drinking 1/3 of a can of GOOD IDEA before your meal and finishing the can with your food can reduce post-meal blood sugar spikes by an average of 25%. GOOD IDEA is backed by over 20 years of research showing the efficacy of its five amino acids and the essential mineral chromium. These ingredients come together to reduce the post-meal blood sugar spike and increase insulin sensitivity. GOOD IDEA can be a tasty addition to a meal that also helps with blood sugar control.
Balancing Blood Sugar With Exercise
Exercise is a great way to help regulate blood sugar and improve insulin sensitivity. According to the American Diabetes Association, just 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per day can significantly lower blood sugar levels in individuals with type 2 diabetes. If you prefer a more condensed workout then opt for performing 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week. High-intensity interval training is a great place to start. Regardless of intensity, engaging in aerobic exercise, such as running or cycling, can have a long-lasting effect on blood sugar levels by improving glucose uptake and utilization by muscles. If you prefer weights to cardio, you will be happy to learn that resistance training can also be beneficial by increasing muscle mass, which can lead to better glucose control. Exercise does not have to be a daunting undertaking. Start by taking the stairs, parking further away from the entrance to buildings, or doing a mini circuit while watching tv at night.
Key Takeaways: The Link Between Blood Sugar and Skin Health
Blood sugar control plays a significant role in skin health. High blood sugar levels can contribute to the development of acne, premature aging, and skin infections. Maintaining healthy blood sugar levels through a healthy and balanced diet, tools like GOOD IDEA, and regular exercise can help promote clear, glowing, and youthful skin. By prioritizing blood sugar control, we can achieve healthy skin from the inside out.
Author: Dr. Colleen Gulick