Who Wants Abundant Energy - Part 4
As promised in my last editorial, this edition will continue with discussion of the importance of maintaining blood sugar balance and invite you to realise the effects of stress on your energy. I will end with an overview of the whole series and inform you of my next topic, which I hope will be of interest to 100’s of readers as many of you will already have this problem as a diagnosed condition.
Keeping blood sugar stable is important for good energy levels among other things and its balance is dependent on several important factors. When you eat food that releases its sugars quickly, the result is a large amount of sugar in your blood. For protection, your body secretes a hormone (insulin)) from the pancreas, which when working well, effectively lowers the amount of sugar in the blood. If the body recognises that there is a need to secrete insulin on a very regular basis, the pancreas will eventually wear out. This is when a state of hyperglycaemia occurs, (too much sugar in the blood), and a diagnosis of diabetes will result, sometimes with a prescription drug to manage the problem. Diabetes in this country is on the increase and my experience is that many clients have been wrongly informed as to the appropriate diet and do not take their condition seriously. It is vital, that you manage your sugar levels effectively and consistently.
If your body is constantly releasing surges of insulin in response to rises in blood sugar, then the body’s cells become resistant to it and fail to respond, and sugar levels stay high. This signals more insulin and a vicious cycle begins. This condition is called Insulin Resistance and causes weight gain, high blood pressure and high blood fats.
The type of food that you eat is of huge importance here and the focus is on foods that release their sugar over a long period of time, usually referred to as complex carbohydrates (whole grains, pulses, vegetables, nuts and seeds etc.). These days, many people eat sugar laden foods, white bread, white pasta, caffeine, alcohol etc. which regularly causes surges in blood sugar. Glycaemic load and glycaemic index charts are available, listing which foods are better to eat for blood sugar stabilisation.
It is not only food that affects what your blood sugar is doing. Your stress glands, the adrenals which sit on top of your kidneys, release adrenaline when you perceive a stress. A surge of adrenaline when stressed can leave you jittery, irritable, tired and shaky, all common symptoms of a dip in blood sugar. If you ever feel like this after several hours without food, it is a sign that your blood sugar is low and adrenaline has kicked in.
Stress saps energy levels, everyone knows that. We have just learnt that stress is connected to blood sugar balance and the longer blood sugar is out of balance, the more adrenaline is produced which over time, tires the adrenal glands. Stress seems to be at epidemic proportions and it presents a whole host of other problems for the body.
In terms of low energy, the biggest problems occur when you have been exposed to regular stresses over a long period of time. As stress requires a hormonal response of adrenaline to enable you to cope and then the hormone of cortisol, to calm you down, you can imagine that after years of this, the adrenals can no longer cope with the constant demands placed upon them, and your body enters the exhaustion phase. Now, this takes years to happen, but the danger is that as human beings, we adapt and stress can go unrecognised as it becomes a regular part of our lives.
This series of 4 articles has led to brief discussion of topics including how we make energy, the importance of sleep, and blood sugar balance and the role of iron and stress in the production and maintenance of energy. Each topic warrants a whole edition as they are unbelievably complicated.
In clinical practice, when addressing issues of low energy, all factors that have been discussed in this series are addressed. With proper attention to diet, exercise, rest, relaxation and nutritional supplements, amongst other things, it is possible to achieve an abundance of energy.
At Newport Complementary Health Clinic, we have strategies in place to ensure that clients not only find abundant energy but once they have it, to learn how they can hold onto it.
My next topic for discussion will be the thyroid gland, its role in the function of our entire body and how you can improve its function and maintain its health.