The Blood Sugar Solution Diet

By Nicole German (RD, LD)

2982-the blood sugar solution.jpgDr. Mark Hyman recently released his book titled, The Blood Sugar Solution.

His book details how you can achieve optimal blood sugar levels for better health.

His main focus is on how to reverse and treat disease with a healthy diet.There is nothing new or revolutionary in this diet approach, however, the recommendations described are nearly perfect. Perhaps we don’t need diet secrets or drastic measure–just pure and balanced foods.

Blood Sugar Diet Claims

  • Prevent diabetes, heart disease, dementia, cancer
  • Balance hormone levels
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Improve digestion
  • Detoxify the body
  • Improve metabolism and energy levels
  • Improve mental health

Diet Fundamentals

  • Avoid: Artificial sweeteners, sugar, honey, agave, most vegetable oils, white flour, trans fat, alcohol, dairy, processed foods, corn syrup,
  • Limit: Some grains, stevia, fruits (2 per day), other flour products, starchy vegetables
  • Include: Eggs, brown rice, lean and clean meats, seafood, nuts, beans, avocado, olives, olive oil, coconut oil, vegetables, seeds, seaweed, organic foods, rBGH-free foods (no hormones), non-GMO foods (non genetically modified).
  • Exercise daily for 60 minutes
  • Perfect Plate Rule: Make half your plate non-starchy vegetables, one-quarter full of lean protein, and one-quarter full of starches (from beans/lentils/starchy vegetable).

Dr. Hyman Video

Pros and Cons

I listened to an interview with Dr. Hyman, and his principles are almost spot-on with what scientific research has revealed. I find that many dietitians would even agree with most of his diet approach.

The main downfall is that he limits starchy vegetables, fruits, and high quality whole grain flours in his book. Blueberries and strawberries should not be limited in order to achieve optimal health!

Low fat and fat free dairy should simply be limited–not completely avoided. There is always controversy surrounding dairy, but a few small servings can get you calcium, vitamin D, and balance in your diet.

All of other Dr. Hyman’s principles are in line with what other health professionals would consider to be the perfect diet approach–plenty of high quality fresh ingredients and a diet consisting of mostly fruits and vegetables.

What do you think? Would you try the Blood Sugar Solution?

You can buy the book here on Amazon.

12 Comments

  1. Rsg

    Just a quick note. Blueberries and other “dark” berries can be eaten. 1/2 cup per day. Even on the advanced plan

    Reply
  2. marie

    I don’t understand how to consume 2,000 calories a day on this diet which is what i need . What is the carb, fat, protein ratio? Lean meats, loads of veggies, good fats and bits of rice & quinoa get me to about 1200 calories. Without at least 200 grams of carb or high ratios of fat, I can’t get enough calories.
    I’m frustrated and confused – I find the same thing with Furmahn’s diet. I don’t want to loose weight!

    Reply
  3. Jamie Malsam

    Hi. I am going to buy his book and give it a try, because my boyfriend is diabetic and it is in my family.We both can stand to lose some weight for our health. Thank you. Sincerely Jamie Malsam.

    Reply
  4. Jay

    He’s nuts! I am on the 80-10-10 lifestyle (90% of my cals come from FRUIT, the other greens and veggies. I eat no cooked food) for two years now and my blood sugar levels are perfect. FAT is what messes up your blood sugar. We as humans thrive on fruits and veggies. We NEED carbs to survive. Saying to limit/eliminate them is insanity.

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  5. Dan

    Here is a quote from Joel Fuhrman’s website diseaseproof which illustrates what I was saying,

    “In order to enjoy excellent health, in addition to eating high-nutrient foods, we must also strive to respond appropriately to the signals of true hunger so that we avoid overeating. Too many calories, even from healthy natural foods, will translate into excess fat on the body and therefore health risks.”

    The importance of eating healthy is that a person can be satisfied with fewer calories, because the nutrient density satisfies the body.

    Exercise can be used in a positive way in that it can enable a person to eat more healthy higher calorie food, such as nuts and seeds, without gaining weight. Exercise should not be used in order to be able to eat more unhealthy food.

    I found what Mark Hyman stated about calories on Huffington Post.

    Reply
  6. Benjamin Raucher

    I would definitely buy this book. Diabetes is an epidemic in America. It is no doubt caused by massive consumption of unrefined grains which some believe are not part of the normal diet of people, This is the view of those who propose the PALEOLITHIC DIET.

    BENJAMIN RAUCHER

    Reply
  7. Jessica

    I personally think it would be worth a shot. You’d be surprised at how much just cutting out a few foods can make a difference in your overall health. It’s also great to add a few new ones – especially vegetables. I suggest growing your own vegetables at home. It’s very rewarding to know where your next bite has been and what it has been exposed to.

    Reply
  8. Dan

    I pretty much agree with most of what Hyman says, the emphasis on healthy diet, while also emphasizing exercise. The one statement I have heard him say that I question is that he said that whether something is processed matters more than the number of calories it contains. My view is that the MOST important way to lose weight is by calorie deficits. Calories matter more than the quality of calories for the weight of a person. Better quality calories are better, however, for one’s health. If a person is burning 2000 calories a day and consuming completely non-processed 5000 calories a day, they will not lose weight. Lots of persons eat healthy diets, but don’t lose weight, because they don’t control their caloric intake. I lost weight by exercising, and I had calorie deficits by the fact that I did not overcompensate calorically for the exercise- I underate my exercise. I tracked carefully my calories everyday to make sure I underate my exercise. I lost weight, even though not everything I ate was not processed. Exercise enabled me to lose and now to maintain my weight at a higher caloric intake level than I would have been able to if I didn’t exercise- however I still have to limit my caloric intake, as well as making sure I am consuming enough calories. Since losing weight, I have tried to improve the quality of my calories, in order to improve my health. However, the most important thing for weight is for me to eat the right number of calories each day- but then improve the quality of them. Even Joel Fuhrman, who has probably some similarities to Hyman, for instance by emphasizing super healthy diets, never states that calories don’t matter. He emphasizes that people can eat a lot of food that is low in energy density, such as non-starchy vegetables- these also have a lot of nutrients per calorie. He doesn’t say that persons can eat all the energy dense nuts and seeds they want, just because they are healthy, but he does encourage persons to eat a limited amount each day. On his diet plan, the higher the caloric value of the food, the smaller the quantity a person can consume of it- this even applies to healthy foods. Another example is that a higher quantity of non-starchy vegetables are allowed than starchy vegetables- even though both are healthy, the starchy ones are more energy dense. His diet is very high quality in nutrition, but still calorically controlled. It is nutrient dense- getting the most nutrients for the fewest calories. Hyman seemed to say that only the quality matters, but not the quantity.

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  9. Spectra

    I’d be interested in seeing what his book has to say, but I also agree with you about limiting the fruit. I’ve found that fruit doesn’t seem to affect my blood sugar the way that candy or other processed sweets do. I think the combination of the fiber, water, and sugar in the fruit helps to regulate my blood sugar and doesn’t cause it to spike. Other than that, I think his book probably doesn’t have a lot of new info in it–most of those guidelines seem pretty similar to what is already recommended.

    Reply
  10. Jim

    Interesting post.

    I also have had hypoglycemia, and found that it does help avoiding simple carbs (particularly with regard to snacking). I personally don’t consume dairy (for other reasons) but I don’t see why this has to be cut out completely.

    As for avoiding certain fruits (blueberries / strawberries) – I guess you need to weigh the benefits of what nutrients you are gaining against the possible glycemic impact.

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  11. Nicole

    Good point! For something like yourself who is actually diagnosed with hypoglycemia, 1 oz. of cheese with a carbohydrate source or a yogurt or glass of milk can help maintain balanced blood glucose levels.

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  12. STACI

    Personally, i am hypoglycemic, i have to avoid a lot of sugar and carbs- its hard to do and to avoid dairy in the interim is not easy either. I have found that dairy, like cheese, is a great balancing form of protein. Fruit does not make my blood sugar spike, as a matter of fact, fruit helps to regulate it. this diet is a novel idea but i think i’d be shaking the entire time because there wouldn’t be enough carbs to give me the energy to digest all that protein… Atkins has actually been a better fit for me, although I do not eat red meat, i simply replace those red meat items w/ chicken or ground turkey, works well 😀

    Reply