Feed Me, I’m Cranky

You know the feeling, you’re desperate for something sweet and snap at colleagues and family members. It’s what Snickers used for the base of their Superbowl commercials. A cranky Betty White or Abe Vigoda playing football as cranky old people and then magically turning back to the real players after a sugar hit from the Snickers bar. It’s true. Low blood sugar can make you cranky and you should eat, but not a Snickers bar or any candy. Instead, a combination of simple carbs and protein can help prevent future problems.

Why simple carbs and protein.

Protein takes longer to digest and provide energy and simple carbs provide some immediately. A PB&J on one slice of bread could help relieve low blood sugar without the drastic dip in energy later. Keep serving size packets of homemade trail mix that contains dried fruit. The nuts provide the protein, while the sugar content of dried fruit gives instant energy. Slather a sliced apple with a teaspoon or two of peanut butter for quick relief and a tasty snack.

What are other symptoms of low blood sugar?

Crankiness is one, but not the only one. Each person has different symptoms. Some people feel anxious or shaky. Others have dizziness, a rapid heartbeat, fatigue, problems focusing, chills with sweating and weakness. If blood sugar is extremely low, it can cause blurred vision, slurred speech and seizures. Some people even pass out when the problem is severe.

You can avoid getting hangry, that cross between hungry and angry.

Plan meals more carefully and have healthy snacks. If you eat balanced meals that have fresh fruits and vegetables high in fiber, a lean source of protein and whole grains, the various food types release energy sources into the bloodstream at different rates, keeping your blood sugar level. If you skip a meal, it can cause the brain to release stress hormones and that can cause agitation, low energy and lack of concentration. Look for snacks and meals that provide a lot of nutrition, not fast foods that fill your belly but leave you feeling cranky after a while.

  • If you have diabetes or a known problem of hypoglycemia—low blood sugar—getting your blood sugar back to normal is imperative. Drink juice, eat a piece of candy or dried fruit like raisins for a quick fix and seek help.
  • A square of dark chocolate can help relieve crankiness. It provides energy and can help lower stress according to research published in the Journal of Proteome Research.
  • Drink a cup of hot green tea. The caffeine in tea won’t jangle your nerves and the theanine calms you. You can even add a touch of honey and some lemon, but it’s better to drink it without those additives.
  • Add food high in Omega-3 to your diet. Studies show that too much Omega-6 and too little Omega-3 can cause anger, crankiness and aggression. Increasing Omega-3 by eating food like salmon, tuna and walnuts can help.

For more information, contact us today at Targeted Nutrition Technologies