Five Surprising Foods That Spike Blood Sugar and How to Make Them Healthier with Dr. Casey Means



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Obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, polycystic ovarian syndrome, and Alzheimer’s disease all have one big thing in common—they all involve a component of blood sugar dysregulation. So many other diseases do, too. Considering the rampant use of sugar and flour in our food supply, managing blood sugar is something we should all be thinking about if we want to protect or improve our health. 

Thanks to technological advances like continuous glucose monitoring, we can now understand how we respond to carbohydrates like never before. For one person, a sweet potato might be easy to handle metabolically. For another, it could mean a giant rise and fall of blood sugar with a corresponding insulin spike. Some of the foods you might assume are healthy may even be the worst offenders. 

Today, Dhru takes a deep dive into blood sugar regulation and precision nutrition with Dr. Casey Means. Dr. Means is a Stanford-trained physician, Chief Medical Officer and Co-founder of metabolic health company Levels, an Associate Editor of the International Journal of Disease Reversal and Prevention, and a Lecturer at Stanford University. 

Her mission is to maximize human potential and reverse the epidemic of preventable chronic disease by empowering individuals with tools that can facilitate deep understanding of our bodies and inform personalized and sustainable dietary and lifestyle choices. Dr. Means’ perspective has been recently featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Men’s Health, Forbes, Business Insider, Techcrunch, Entrepreneur Magazine, Metabolism, Endocrine Today, and more.

In this episode, we dive into:

  • Five surprising foods that spike your blood sugar (6:15)
  • What is insulin resistance (24:27) 
  • How to achieve metabolic flexibility (34:20) 
  • The impact of fructose on the body (46:59)
  • Food pairing for optimal metabolic health (51:49) 
  • The best fat to eat (54:18) 
  • How food sequencing impacts glucose and insulin levels (1:00:51) 
  • The connection between high blood sugar and rates of COVID infection (1:20:16) 
  • Foods that might not spike your glucose but should still be avoided (1:35:26) 
  • How time restricted eating impacts on blood sugar (1:39:24) 
  • Optimal glucose ranges (1:43:10) 
  • What your glucose number should be after you eat a meal (1:45:26) 
  • What Dr. Means’ diet looks like and how to achieve a level 10 score when it comes to your meals (1:58:21)

For more on Dr. Casey Means you can follow her on Instagram @drcaseyskitchen and @levels, on Twitter @drcaseyskitchen and @levels, and through her website Sign up for early access to Levels Metabolic Fitness Program here: The program includes a telehealth consultation with a physician in your state, two sensors shipped to your door, and Levels software. 

Also mentioned in this episode:

For more on Dhru Purohit, be sure to follow him on Instagram @dhrupurohit, on Facebook @dhruxpurohit, on Twitter @dhrupurohit, and on YouTube @dhrupurohit. You can also text Dhru at (302) 200-5643 or click here.

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Wishing you health and happiness,
Mark Hyman, MD
Mark Hyman, MD


Mark Hyman, MD

Mark Hyman, MD is the Founder and Director of The UltraWellness Center, the Head of Strategy and Innovation of Cleveland Clinic's Center for Functional Medicine, and a 13-time New York Times Bestselling author.

If you are looking for personalized medical support, we highly recommend contacting Dr. Hyman’s UltraWellness Center in Lenox, Massachusetts today.


If you are looking for personalized medical support, we highly recommend contacting Dr. Hyman’s UltraWellness Center in Lenox, Massachusetts today.

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