How Controlling Your Blood Sugar Can Help You Regain Your Mojo, Boost Your Energy, and Rev Up Your Metabolism

The trifecta of menopause, metabolism, and blood sugar seem to conspire against women as they age. Around 40 to 45, women’s blood sugar control begins to shift. One of the first signs is that the body doesn’t recover as quickly. As it continues, imbalanced blood sugar can lead to menopause complaints like weight gain, anxiety, and mood shifts.

But there’s a way to fight back. Dr. Beverly Yates, an internationally recognized speaker and expert in diabetes, menopause, and metabolism, explains how women can regain control for improved energy and health by learning how to easily balance their blood sugar.

She recommends using a continuous glucose monitor to better control the hormonal fluctuations and have a better day. This conversation explains ideal blood sugar levels, so you know what to look for. You’ll also learn why she thinks baseline blood sugar is higher in women today than it has been historically.

Dr. Yates’ mother used to say, “Growing older as a woman isn't for the faint of heart.” But, this conversation with JJ Virgin and Dr. Yates provides an uplifting view on how your outlook on life begins to change as you enter menopause, plus tips to help you can easily regain control, so you don’t cause continuous harm to your body.

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ATHE_Transcript_Ep 511_Dr. Beverly Yates
JJ Virgin: [00:00:00] Hey, this is JJ Virgin. Welcome and thanks so much for joining me. This is Ask the Health Expert here. I put the Power of Health in your hands and give you access to the top people in health and wellness. In each episode, I share safe ways to get healthy, lose weight, heal your gut detox and lots more. So if you wanna get healthy and get off the dieting for life merry-go-round, I'll give you strategies that will help you look and feel better fast.
All right, so we are going to do a tall order today. We're gonna transform your blood. To regain your mojo, boost your energy, and rev up your metabolism. And I'm bringing Dr. Beverly Yates to you and I know that she can do this. She is just an [00:01:00] amazing expert in blood sugar and really how to control your morning blood sugar.
That will help you have it better all day long. Let me tell you a little bit about her. She started out as an MIT electrical engineer and systems engineer and then went off to naturopathic school, cuz that's how one follows the other. But it's interesting because she has that MIT background. She's an engineer, she has a very systems process approach and she's used that to create the Yates.
And that is a program for people who have blood sugar issues and she is now like she is on a mission. Dr. Beverly is, she's on a mission to help 3 million people heal from type two diabetes and pre-diabetes. She's now an internationally recognized speaker and expert in diabetes, menopause, and metabolism.
She is a published author, both of the Heart Health for Black Women and Natural Approach to Healing and Preventing Heart Disease, and the co-author of multiple books, including one with my buddy Jack Campfield, the Soul of Success. [00:02:00] I love Dr. Beverly as a human being, as a woman. She's amazing and as a practitioner, she is really my go-to in talking all things continuous Glucose monitor.
So super cool things she gave us is her book on how to interpret your CGM data, and you can get that by going to. Simple, simple. Okay, I'll be right back with Dr. Beverly. Stay with me.
Dr. Beverly Yates, welcome to the show.
Dr. Beverly Yates: Thank you so much. I'm delighted to be here with you.
JJ Virgin: Well, so you, you wrote this thing about like, what should we talk about on the podcast? And you go, let's take a deep dive into how to create an unfair advantage when menopause, metabolism and blood sugar seem to conspire against we women as we age.
Right. And I'm like, all right. Yeah, let's definitely talk about that. And I know you said we're also gonna just bust some myths. You are [00:03:00] really. making huge waves in terms of blood sugar, diabetes, all of that out in the industry and especially around continuous glucose monitors, which we're gonna dig into.
So I'm excited about that, but I wanna start first with blood sugar. And. Why, like, and, and here's what I'll, I'll tell you what I start to notice and then you're gonna tell us like why this all happens. Sure. I started noticing in my women 40 plus, 45 plus the eating great, you know, exercising, and yet all of a sudden, Their blood sugar is not like it used to be.
They didn't have the blood sugar control. It was, it was higher fasting. It should have been what? What is going on with that? Mm-hmm. .
Dr. Beverly Yates: Yeah, you, no, it's fascinating, right? That age window, really for all of us, things start to shift. Everyone age's 38 to 42. There's a few key dynamics we should be aware of that we're typically not taught, right?
So we're just taking a peak behind the curtain here. [00:04:00] During that age range is when all of your enzymatic reactions, all of them throughout the body, become a little bit less efficient. They drop off anywhere from one to 4% per year. This is why some of us appear to age more rapidly. This is why some of us start to notice that we don't recover.
Like, let's say if we have, if we drink any alcohol, we might find we don't bounce back as quickly. Maybe if we're exercising, we find that if we're doing strength training or if we're doing aerobic training or really high intensity stuff, We can't do it as frequently as we used to. We have to put more time, more rest in there.
All of those are clues that things are shifting and those glycemic control or blood sugar regulation.
JJ Virgin: Yeah. That was actually my first sign that something was going on with me. Mm-hmm. was I couldn't recover like I could before. And it was, it was real, I was like, what's going on here? You know, why not?
Like, I just was kind of achy. Yeah. then as we talk about this, cause we're really, we're really doing this trifecta now. Talking metabolism, talking menopause, talking blood [00:05:00] sugar. You know, you hear so often, I, it's funny cuz you know, people talk about, oh, I'm going into menopause, like I'm just gonna gain weight, you know, this is just the way it is.
And then I was reading some news article written by a man. That's an important point. It was like, there's no difference as you go into menopause. I'm like, oh yeah, you get into this body for one, like one day as hormones are shifting, like, let's see how you, how you last. Your sleep got disrupted and your achy and yeah.
I'm like, you know, guys should not be allowed to write about menopause. I don't know. Just thinking ,
Dr. Beverly Yates: it's not a lived experience.
JJ Virgin: Right, right. So I mean, menopause, metabolism, you're going through it. Like, do you just kind of have to say, this is, this is as good as gonna get for a while? What's, what do you think?
Dr. Beverly Yates: I, I think as a transition period, right? Like, think about what happens, what goes from childhood through puberty and adolescence to becoming a young adult. And then, you know, it's like the butterflies coming outta cocoon. Revealed, excuse me, [00:06:00] revealed to the world. And when it comes to menopause, your reproductive window is what's shifting.
It doesn't mean everything else has to change with it though, but we have very little, I think in the common dialogue in the public discourse, there's not a lot of talk about what to expect other than doom and gloom, right? We don't have to have doom and gloom.
JJ Virgin: We don't, I know there's a lot of like evil jokes about it versus, you know, when you really start to go through it.
What I view it. And I'm hoping you can help with this, you know, this metaphor mm-hmm. is, for me, it really felt like riding waves. And riding waves. And, and the better you can get at your balance, right, and adjusting as the waves go, the easier it will get. So what are some of the things that someone can expect as they're going through menopause?
What are some of those waves that they're gonna have to ride?
Dr. Beverly Yates: That's a great metaphor. So let's use the waves metaphor, right? You. With that in mind, some things you can [00:07:00] expect is that your energy, literally your energy, fundamentally your soul is shifting. You're leaving that reproductive window, which means energy and all of the variability that went with that reproductive ability is now.
I would say shifting and hopefully coalescing so that energy can come back into you because a ton has been going out quite literally. Whether it's through menstruation, maybe it's caring for others, whether it's kids, maybe your parents a loved one, or partner or spouse, whatever your situation may be.
There's just a ton of energy that goes out. Now, menopause is a time to invite that energy to return, so you can be about yourself. Make yourself care, number one. But the reality is, in my experience, JJ, is that for many of us, that's not quite our lived experience. . , I look at you. Yeah. Right. It's not mm-hmm. . We wish.
JJ Virgin: Yeah. But I do love that idea, and I think one of the important things for people to understand is, you know, when you make the shift and love the idea of all that energy going out, once you make that shift, [00:08:00] mm. It is, it's actually, it's the, I I think it's the easiest time
Dr. Beverly Yates: of life. It's simpler for sure.
I, something I've loved about menopause is that I've gotten to this place my mother said I would get, which was the things that used to bother me, don't bother me anymore. And I am totally okay if people don't agree with me, if life is so much simpler.
JJ Virgin: That happened at 50. I was, I was like going, how come that little button of, oh, you don't really like me or agree with what I say?
That button. Why couldn't I have flipped that button at like 30? Maybe that's a legacy we can teach our, our, our kids. Because Wow. Yeah. It's just kinda going, oh no, everyone's gonna like me. And, and you know, I don't, I can, I can go outside and my hair doesn't look great today. It's totally fine. Yes, definitely that thing.
So looking at menopause then. Mm-hmm. and kind of understanding that one of the first things that starts to go a little wonky is blood sugar. Mm-hmm. , what can you do about that? Like what, [00:09:00] I know we're gonna talk about continuous glucose monitoring and I think that's just amazing. You know, but is this a point where we have an opportunity where if we do really double down on getting our blood sugar stable, it's gonna help?
And if we don't, we might end up kind of going down the diabetes route, like, what's happening
Dr. Beverly Yates: here? Yeah, there's a real shift, right? So we have this hormonal dance that's going on and, and for us as women, we're well aware of, of the dance and the detailed players. You know, you've got estrogen and progesterone, you've got testosterone, and they're all doing their thing.
We've also got insulin and that shifting and for whatever reason estrogen, testosterone and progesterone are not talked about in the same way the insulin talked about. It's as if it's a whole nother part of the body. . I invite everyone listening to consider insulin is very much part of the hormonal team.
And so just like when you went into your puberty years, into your teen years, you may have had. Of, of several months of maybe being a little more chubby. Like you see some kids, they almost like little chipmunks, they have chubby little cheeks and then boom, they usually, they grow. They literally grow right through it, right?
Their body is transforming and [00:10:00] changing. Similarly, when we go to menopause and we're on the other end of that bookend experience of our reproductive window, right? It's coming to a close. Our body has a shift in that energy, and for some of us, it can really make a change for our blood sugar management.
The interesting thing is that for menopause specifically different than the journey men glike little chipmunks, They haveen with menopause as estrogen and progesterone start to drop and they need to for menopause to actually happen. What can happen then is that a stress hormone called cortisol can now start to take over the conversation and cause a rise in the release of blood sugar.
Glucose, which means insulin now is gonna come to try to catch it. And if those aren't well aligned, this is where you can get the insulin resistance. You can get the weight gain, you can get the mood shift. Some women experience anxiety. You know, this doesn't have to all be a problem. . But if there are problems that show up, those are the ones that happen most commonly.
Mm. So what do you do about it? Well, there are some key things to do. One is to [00:11:00] be really sure as you go through your time approaching menopause called perimenopause and actual menopause when menstruation ends
JJ Virgin: is to make sure find that, that time approaching menopause. Yeah. How would someone know they were there?
Oh, great question. How much time?
Dr. Beverly Yates: Take. Sure. So perimenopause is that time window before it's truly menopause. So the definitions would be the time period for many women where their menstruation cycle shifts usually pretty noticeably. So women who are regular become irregular women who are already irregular are really kind of.
And the longer time window between their menstrual cycle. So for many women it will be a, either it will lengthen before it stops, or it will get more frequent. So instead of having one menstrual cycle a month, they may have two. And for some of us, that's a terrifying thought. If it's a difficult moment, if your menstrual cycle's pretty easy, it's not a big deal.
If your menstrual cycles are irregular, you just have to wait it out. But if you haven't had your menstrual cycle for at least 12 consecutive months, an entire. That [00:12:00] usually is medically defined as truly being in menopause. Got it. Just so we can recognize it.
JJ Virgin: So someone's in menopause. And now they're pushing more on cortisol.
Mm-hmm. . And so their blood sugar's up, their insulin's up, they're starting to gain weight around their waist. And I think the worst is all when you've got cortisol and insulin up. It's like a, you know, it's like your, your waistline's just a target, a fat fat,
Dr. Beverly Yates: fat, like fat magnet it's a real problem. Yeah.
It happens. So,
JJ Virgin: so then what can someone do about that?
Dr. Beverly Yates: Well, a few things. One, as menopause approaches or if you're already at menopause, be just like a hawk focused on sleep. You have got to rest. You have to have an opportunity for all of these things to reset, in particular, your blood sugar, to reset your glucose levels along with insulin.
You have to have contrast. So that's one. Making sure that you get to bed on time. What
JJ Virgin: if someone's sleep is just a disaster because they're having [00:13:00] hot flashes and they're waking up. You know, it's like this is probably the most important time for sleep when you've got this adrenal, like you're pushing on these adrenals, but then they can't sleep.
Dr. Beverly Yates: What? Yeah, they're all buzzed up. Right. So for some women, a great option would be bioidentical hormone replacement therapy to give them back the progesterone because progesterone is one of the key ways that women will be able to sleep and avoid insomnia and anxiety and a buzzy mind and all of that.
So to get back that deep restorative quality of sleep. Another option could be herbs and supplements. They can be helpful during this journey. If cortisol really is running the show, then some particular herbs that are helpful have been shown to. Ashwaganda extraction, Magnolia Ola, particularly during the day to help keep you from being too zipped up or too crashed because for some women, they just get so wired and, but they're still exhausted, so they can't really function.
And other women, they just crash. They never really get to the energy side of the equation, right? [00:14:00] They're exhausted everything. Just the thought of doing anything, not actually doing it, the thought of it exhausts them. Right
JJ Virgin: now when you having people. Or are you doing it based on how they're feeling?
Dr. Beverly Yates: Both.
Both depending on the severity of the symptoms. Most of the time we will run lab tests, but sometimes the symptoms are just really, really clear. Yeah, it's like, I mean,
JJ Virgin: really clear. Look at me. And if you're having them test, what are you looking at specifically? So
Dr. Beverly Yates: we're looking at their balance of cortisol, where it is throughout their day and their nighttime.
Right? Usually that's gonna be a four point cortisol test. So morning, lunchtime, late afternoon, and then nighttime, bedtime. Sometimes if someone has a. Big sleep service. Let's say they are having hot flashes, things like that. We could test cortisol during the night as well, so they're going, they're awake anyway, you know, capture their saliva and also maybe do melatonin to see if their melatonin balance is right.
You, again, most of these tests can be done conveniently, safely, sanely in your home. So you can collect your own saliva or your own urine in your, in the [00:15:00] comfort of the, of your home. You don't have to go anywhere. It's very easy. The lab testing has gotten a lot more specific, I feel, and made more user-friendly for sure.
So anyone can be successful with these things. So we could test not guess, have an objective measure, listen carefully, you know, make sure anyone you're working with is actually listening to you. I remember one of my professors in Naturepathy Medical School, you know, this person said it so well, which is that anything can cause anything.
Listen to people with respect.
right? We have so much diversity in terms of our chemistry, our physiology, like people are not identical. Even twins, identical twins have variability in how they respond to things, right? That's a big clue.
JJ Virgin: So one of the things that you do that I think is just fascinating is to help people get their morning blood sugar, their fasting blood sugar normalize, and to use a continuous glucose monitor, which I think it feels like is just really coming into more [00:16:00] common usage.
You know, it was really only used for people who had type one diabetes or. Insulin dependent. And so I'd love to talk about them, how they're used, what you see as the role for them, and then how someone might be able to use this to really help get their hormones balanced, their, you know, the blood sugar, back on track, metabolism better, lose weight, all the great things.
dive in, .
Dr. Beverly Yates: All right, cool. So continuous glucose monitors, also known as CGMs, are really a wonderful tool to use. They're simple and easy. You know, you take your device, you just attach it very easily to your arm, typically, and then you'll use an app and then you can look at your phone and you will have real time data about what's going on with your blood sugar.
And let's back
JJ Virgin: up one sec. Cause just even with that little piece of, you take a device, you attach it to your arm. Mm-hmm. , just so everybody understands, there's a little tiny needle in your. Right,
Dr. Beverly Yates: right. Coming from the device, the cgm, so now that's attached right here, you know, or the [00:17:00] back either arm. It's not magical.
It doesn't have to be to the right or the left, either one, right? And then now you have downloaded your app and then you're good to go. You have your smartphone there. Put it by the device and you can read real time. What in the world is going on with your blood sugar? Everyone reports without fail that they have insights they would not have otherwise.
Cotton. So even if you are otherwise a healthy person, or maybe you're someone who's more interested in just blood sugar for the sake of blood sugar, or interested in metabolism, right? It's a great way to know what's going on. People find out that things that they were eating and consuming that they thought were healthy, that are on generic lists.
This is healthy or this is anti-inflammatory, or blah, blah, blah. . You find out your gut, your microbiome, your body is like, Uhuh, I don't like it. I'm spiking the blood sugar. Yeah.
JJ Virgin: Well, let's talk about how you would look at it then. So, because what really is a blood sugar spike? Mm-hmm. with that area under the curb.
So someone wakes up in the morning, like, walk us through what, what a, a good blood sugar would look
Dr. Beverly Yates: like. All right? Sure. So when you first wake [00:18:00] up, ideally your blood sugar levels should be for a fasting morning blood sugar number, somewhere between 70 to 85. Now, don't freak out if yours is 90. I just said it was ideal for it to be 70 to 85, technically anything under 99.
So 70 to 99 would be under a concerning level, a hundred or higher for a fasting morning. Blood sugar level is considered too high. And then we have degrees of that, right? So like 120 are higher, 150 or higher. When people start to hit the one 20 s, one 50 s, certainly 200 higher, God forbid, at those levels, they're more likely to have type two diabetes.
Perhaps it's maybe type one or pre-diabetes. There are people who have paradoxically somewhat. Morning fasting, morning blood sugar numbers compared to their a1c, which might be lower. And we're introducing a new term here, the a1c. So I wanna be really clear. The fasting blood sugar is a snapshot in time of what your blood sugar is doing [00:19:00] right in that moment when you awaken.
It should have reset overnight and gone to that healthy range of 70 to 85, let's say. Generally liberally speaking, 70 to 99, right? For whatever reason, if it doesn't do that, and if it habitually, consistently doesn't do that, then you need to be concerned if you're over at a hundred or higher for fasting morning blood sugar.
Cause you know when you are asleep, you're not able to eat, you can't drink anything. Your blood sugar should reset and get to 70 to 85. There's no healthy reason why that wouldn't occur. That's a reasonable expectation, but for many people, that's not what happens. So trouble can unfold from there. With a cgm, you'll find out if your blood sugar is resetting, and yeah, you could use a glucometer with a, a test strips, but then you have to keep doing the finger sticks.
Oh, that out, and you drop of blood. Yeah, it hurts.
JJ Virgin: I, I used that to make sure that my CGM was working correctly. I'm like, well, this, this is not a fun situation. It's not fun.
Dr. Beverly Yates: It's hard. It's hard. Anyone with diabetes? It's their least, least favorite thing. As much as it's lifesaving information, the CGM is just [00:20:00] way more convenient.
Right. It's just easier. And
JJ Virgin: sometimes we need, so we have this morning, the morning fasting blood sugar. Mm-hmm. , and let's say it is, And you, then you throw out a term. So let's define hemoglobin A1C so people understand what that is.
Dr. Beverly Yates: Sure. So A1C is the long term measure, the average of what your blood sugar has done over the past three to four months.
Here's why. It's that measure. Think about it. If you have a, if you, your bone marrow is what makes your red blood cells and red blood cells is what the A1C is measuring is how much extra. Glucose, extra blood sugar is literally on that red blood cell. So think about a plate. Let's say your, your bone marrow was putting out plates, and then as you have your plate come out of the bone marrow, it's shooting out, you know, millions of these things, right?
If you have high levels of blood sugar, every single one of those new red blood cells gets coated with this extra blood sugar. So think of it as like a powdered sugar on a donut, and then you add sprinkles, right? Like that's the process. Now, in a healthy situation when these new [00:21:00] red blood cells, so we're using this metaphor of plates are out, they're not getting sprinkled with the powdered sugar and sprinkles, right?
It's not happening because it's healthy. In the unhealthy situation, it is getting hit with that extra blood sugar, that extra glucose, you know, the powdered sugar and sprinkles as my metaphor here. That's what's going on. And, and what do you want?
JJ Virgin: A1C to
Dr. Beverly Yates: be? Ideally it's gonna be under a 5.7, so somewhere from in the four to a 5.6.
JJ Virgin: It's so interesting cuz you know, I was taught early on, oh you want it in the fours? And I go, I never see anyone in the force . Every once in a while I do, you know, it's like I see five, five point and I've never been able to get a, like mine's a 5.2 to five point.
Dr. Beverly Yates: It's interesting, right? I have a theory about that.
If you wanna, if you wanna hear it, I wanna hear it. Okay. So I feel like JJ, we're in a moment of some levels of human adaptation and I think one of the reasons why we don't see people in the forest is that most of us live a [00:22:00] live in our life where there's just so much background stressors. Mm-hmm. that are baseline blood sugar is higher than it has been historically.
True for humans.
JJ Virgin: I would love. And so this thing happened, you didn't know about it, but mm-hmm. , I think I told about it stage at Mindshare this weekend. When I started meditating after about six months meditating, I noticed, I was like, this is weird. I dropped five pounds and I was like, what the heck happened? And I was talking to Dr.
Joe Spencer and I said, you know, I haven't changed anything except I started to meditate. So what does that mean? I'm moving less , you know? Right. When you're right. And I go and I lost five pounds. He goes, you know, yeah. He, he made a joke. Cause he always tells people to become nobody. Nowhere. No thing. He goes, it's the no thing diet.
But it just shows you, it is so important that our body's not a bank account, it's a chemistry lab. And my guess is Beverly, is that if we. Also monitoring blood [00:23:00] sugar as people started to put something into their life, whether it's, you know, meditation or tapping something that, that really helped their nervous system calm down, that their blood sugar would go down.
Cause one of the things I noticed early, yes, love , is I would've people come in and they're triglycerides look good. Mm-hmm. and like they're clearly didn't have metabolic. Right, but their blood sugar was elevated, their diet was great. You know, Uhhuh, , but their blood sugar was up. And I'm like, yeah, okay.
Clearly there's something else at play here than just this. This wasn't a carb thing. definitely wasn't a sugar thing. It was a stress thing and I'm so glad that you brought that up because it's, it's important for people to understand that you could be, you know, you're gonna use the cgm, but you might see the CGM go.
You're like, wait a minute. What? What? Just why'd this happen? Right? So it doesn't about how we might see stress there.
Dr. Beverly Yates: Yeah. Yeah. So stress could be at play. It doesn't mean you are broken or the CGMs [00:24:00] broken. I really wanna make sure we get that message driven home because some of us are so much on high alert around our health, understandably so.
Today's world is a challenging health environment, depending on your family's background, you know, and the environment in which you were raised. There's so many different factors to think about. I don't think being obsessed or freaked out is helpful to health. I do think being focused and doing things that are relevant though are helpful to health.
So if you think about the role of stress, right? What does stress do? It helps you to fight, to flee or to freeze. All three of which, yes, freezing includes the use of energy because you're ready to respond to something, right? You're feeling perceiving a direct threat, whether it's real or. It almost doesn't matter.
We are wired for survival and as such, in order to respond to that threat is the release of the cortisol, the adrenaline, all those stress chemicals and what's right with it. The release of your blood sugar, your glucose is gonna go up cause your body's getting ready to put all that blood into your muscles to get you to safety, even if it's hiding.
I e freezing. Right? Okay. So with that scenario [00:25:00] in mind, your insulin has to respond. So if this is a chronic situation for you, it makes you primed to gain weight, because weight is an energy bank, it's a storage form of energy. Your fat bank's gonna go up not down in that sense situation. And so if people are having that perception, having the cgm, you'll see that release of blood sugar.
When you're in a stress, stress situation, let's say you're stuck on a difficult work call, maybe you have a difficult or challenging family moment. You know, whatever your situation may be in your life, whether it's personal things, things for business, stuff with family, neighbors. Maybe you're watching the news, you know, a stressful TV show.
JJ Virgin: Don't do that. Don't
Dr. Beverly Yates: do that. Right. That CGM is giving you great feedback. Similarly for blood sugar responses, and when you eat, you might see these big spikes on your cgm, even though you're eating a food that's healthy. It could be reflection as well of a food intolerance. I know you talk about that a lot and what, what,
JJ Virgin: what would, let's get into some very specific numbers, because I feel like, you know, the [00:26:00] CGMs are out now.
Mm-hmm. and there's. But, and I'm so glad, by the way, everybody, you're getting a CGM book from Dr. Beverly, so Yay. Cuz people need to understand how to unpack this data. No good having the data if you don't know what the heck to do with the data. Right? So when you talk about a spike, what's, what is that?
What does that look like? What's about how long that goes on for? Like, let's now walk through some very specifics of what to look
Dr. Beverly Yates: for. Okay, so let's walk through it. Let's say you. You are fasting. Morning blood sugar starts off in the healthy range, right? And then you eat your breakfast. Ideally your blood sugar rises somewhere around.
Up to no more than 20 I or even no more than 30 points after a meal. Within a half hour to an hour of the meal. So a gentle rise, and then it should come back down to whatever it was right before you started your meal. So with a cgm, unlike the finger sticks, with the glucometer and the test strip, you just look.
You can export this data. It could not be easier, and it will tell you the [00:27:00] number. So you'll see it right before you ate. You'll see it at the intervals that you would like to see it or just keep looking at your phone. Whatever makes you happy. So you can see it at 30 minutes later, an hour later. So let's say your blood sugar rose to one 30 after you ate your meal, then we would fully expect that if you started off with your blood sugar at 100 when you started your meal, that within two hours of completing the meal, it should be back to 100.
That would be a healthy response. Now some people that's not what happens. So go ahead, JJ .
JJ Virgin: Well let's talk about some people, and that's not what happened and I'm going to like, we'll, we'll dig in a little bit more there. And what can cause it, because you said for some important, it's not just
Dr. Beverly Yates: sugar. Go ahead.
It's not just sugar. So for some people what'll happen is they may have a delayed response. So a half hour later it might be looking pretty good, even an hour later, but it might suddenly zip up at an hour and a half, two hours, they'll be like, whoa. Hold on. Right. I was just talking with a, a, a patient yesterday about this very phenomenon for.
And it's really interesting. He's learning [00:28:00] to expand and work more broadly with his foods. And we've just gotten started. So this was our first call. And so I had him send pictures of what he was eating. Cause I find that's the easiest path. And then it reflects back to people what they're doing, right? So don't fill anything out, just send me pictures.
I said we go over it, you know. And so then he sends me his CGMs. He's the type two diabetic in his case, along with some other health concerns. And one of his main go-to things is Tater Tots. What Exactly. We have got some work to do, but the good news is I've got him right And so, you know, and we're trying to make, I'm making his nutrition culturally relevant cause I wanna be flavorful.
And nutritious. You put
JJ Virgin: ketchup on those teeter tots? No. Okay.
Dr. Beverly Yates: Well the tater tots are gonna be gone. . . That's gotta be a food swap over the sweet potatoes and some other things. You know what's so great is you
JJ Virgin: didn't even have to be the bad person. You just like the cgm. And I think what's important, it's interesting.
I was at a, I was at a trip, I was speaking and I was speaking at this [00:29:00] in the Maldives and they had this beautiful buffet, and on the beautiful buffet they had these kiwi fruits that were peeled, you know, kiwi fruit's, such a pain, but it was like peeled. It looked so pretty. And I love kiwi fruit and I'm pretty like, you know, I'll eat maybe one or two servings of berries a day.
Like if that, you know, Well, I go to this buffet and I'm like, look at that. And I do this big old bowl of kiwi fruit and my blood sugar goes up to like one 70 and I'm like, oh.
Dr. Beverly Yates: And now, you know, you got precious feedback , like,
JJ Virgin: no more of that one for me. Yeah. Yeah. Another one that's gonna happen is, Your blood sugar's gonna come up with exercise.
Mm-hmm. as well. It, it can do that. So can you talk about that? Because I literally had a client just go, oh my gosh, my, my, I just, I'm doing my blood sugar monitor and this happened with exercise. I'm like, mm-hmm. . Well, yeah. So yeah, talk about exercise and blood sugar monitors and then let's talk about what you've seen that can help.
Keep it more balanced too.
Dr. Beverly Yates: [00:30:00] Sure. So sometimes people will notice that with exercise that their blood sugar goes up. This makes sense. Friends, here's why active working muscles are blood sugar sponges as such.
JJ Virgin: That's such a good statement. Say it again.
Dr. Beverly Yates: Okay. Active working muscles are blood sugar sponges.
There's no need to worry if your blood sugar goes up as it should appropriately. When you exercise, when you're exercising, you're putting demand, you're doing work, your muscles are responding, your entire body is responding, releasing the extra blood sugar, the glucose so that the muscles can keep doing their thing.
You want that? You absolutely want that. Yeah,
JJ Virgin: that is so important. And it's a myth we have to bust because back when I started in the eighties, it was all about getting to your zone so you can use the most fat. I'm like, no, go lift heavy weights. That's right. It's gonna use a lot of sugar and then you need to put more in there, you know?
So I think that's a really important thing for people to understand cuz you still have this whole like long, slow distance and there's a role. Two. Mm-hmm. . But if you're wearing a cgm, you [00:31:00] will see if you're doing intense exercise, yes, your blood sugar will go up
Dr. Beverly Yates: and it's a healthy response. There is nothing pathological or bad about that.
You want that. That's okay. And because you're using your muscles, you're putting demand on them, you're lifting those heavier weights, you know, that's just a better thing. Resistance and strength training are so important, especially as we age. If you wanna live long enough, well go find some weights and start lifting them.
Do that on, on a regular basis. Right? Amen. Your balance, like, and your, your physical balance, your mental balance and your blood sugar balance, all kinds of balanced friends,
JJ Virgin: significant, right? I am. I am on a, I'm like on a, Like Quest to get women to lift heavy weights. Yes. You know? Right, absolutely. For your hundreds ,
Dr. Beverly Yates: it prevents so many problems, that's for sure.
And so with this blood sugar thing, don't freak out. If you CGM is reporting to you that you have blood sugar spikes, it's simply an increase. It is a natural physiological response to the fact you're putting demand on your body. Your muscles need that nutrient. They're getting it. [00:32:00] Let it happen. We are good
JJ Virgin: here.
So now you've, you're wearing a, a CGM and you're seeing that wow, this, this thing's like my Kiwi experiment. But what about those people are just seeing it, you know, I'm. , I think I'm eating healthy. Mm-hmm. , it seems to be going up more. What are some strategies that you could be putting in place, you know, diet, supplements, et cetera, that could help restore some of that blood sugar balance along with?
Yeah, for most of
Dr. Beverly Yates: us, you know, it's gonna be about making sure you've got those quality proteins, those quality healthy fats, and you make friends with resistant starch because that is the complex, slow burning kind of carbohydrate that is your friend for some reason, honestly, jj, it so annoys me. Carbs have gotten demonized.
You remember how fat got demonized? Well now carbs have been demonized. I'm like, why are we demonizing entire food groups? It
JJ Virgin: goes back and forth, goes back and forth and back and forth. The only one we seem to leave alone, but we don't get enough of is protein. Protein just gets over in the corner and we don't eat enough of it.
And then we go back and forth between eat fat, don't eat fat, [00:33:00] eat carbs, don't eat carbs.
Dr. Beverly Yates: It's like, it's the,
JJ Virgin: yeah, so, so resistance starch. Let's talk about and fiber your, your favorite things there.
Dr. Beverly Yates: So for resistance starch, some of my favorites would be lentils, chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans. And any of the, the bean family that you enjoy could be red beans, it could be pinto beans, it could be black beans, it can be white beans, the navy beans, the Japanese a zuki beans, any of them.
They all have their own flavor profile. Some taste more, more toasted or nutty. Some are pretty bland, but they're all very kind and they already come packaged up with the slow burning resistance starch carbs. You've got your protein in those food families. And you've got your fiber. Three
JJ Virgin: for one. Wow.
Winner . Absolutely. Yeah. When I wrote Sugar Impact, the, like, it looks like a, like tribute to legumes, that book . But when I was digging into it, I'm like, oh my gosh, these are, this is why I, I look at the paleo diet and I always think Paleo [00:34:00] Plus, cuz I'm like, legumes. You just, they're just such a great food.
They're just incredible. And just a little bit each day can make a big, big difference. And then my buddy, Dr. Allen Christensen taught me that you can actually condition your gut you need a tablespoon a day for a week, and then you won't have the big. Bean tooting situation.
Dr. Beverly Yates: Exactly. Those people sometimes are terrified of that.
The other trick with that, in addition to that regular dose like Dr. Allen Christensen talks about is if you cook your own beans or not, if you buy 'em already cooked and they're in a can is, some people will say this to keep that liquid called aquafaba, you can, but we don't wanna get too fancy here. Instead rinse it out, or excuse me, pour out, strain them, put regular water in and soak 'em for another hour and just.
Cleans off of water, right? Cause that's essentially two rinses effectively because, and when somebody else cooks them, you don't know if they did that. Some manufacturers, when they prepare their beans, put 'em through two rinses so that you get more of the fraction out of the beans. It makes it more likely that people will have [00:35:00] flatulence or fart and toot and just be uncomfortable and be
embarrassed, you know, they've got bloat, blah, blah, blah. Just get rid of all that drama and be able to eat the
JJ Virgin: food. And that aqua fava stuff turns the
Dr. Beverly Yates: bean juice.
JJ Virgin: Bean juice, the bean juice. We were at a mind share mastermind retreat. And the chef, you know, it's always there. Always take this on, this big challenge to try to feed us, feed all of us people.
The chef made using monk fruit and that bean juice he made rings. Delicious. And they were absolutely amazing. . I was like, I can't believe you managed to make meringues from bean juice. Who knew? Incredible. Who knew? Wish I had a CGM on for that cause it would've been perfect. . All right, so here's the cool thing.
Is again, we've looked at now like how to navigate menopause really by putting blood sugar at the forefront that'll take care of your metabolism and you are going to gift everyone a CGM book so that they can now that, and, and [00:36:00] this is really important cuz you've gotta really understand these numbers because.
Otherwise, there's no point in wearing one if you don't really get it. And so you'll have that available. And I'm gonna put that at, very obvious. Again, And Dr. Beverly Yates has got such great resources around blood sugar, blood sugar control, all the things you can do.
So I totally recommend following her. And getting involved with her information cuz she is just amazing. And the other thing that I gotta shout you out for that I just love is the fact that, you know, if you look at most of the diet books, , they, they don't take into account like people have different tastes and people have different cultures and you know, someone who's eating more of a Thai diet, they is gonna be very different than someone who maybe came over from Mexico and has more of a Hispanic flare.
[00:37:00] And, and, but most books never take any of that into account and you've really been working hard on making foods that are, can be culturally appropriate. So all of a sudden you can go in and go. Like this. I totally love this. And you said it when you mentioned the tater tot. So I was like, okay, I, I just wanted to give you a shout out on that because you're the only person I know who is doing this and not just doing it.
So it's like, okay, it's, it's, it's perfect for one culture, but you've really, you're, you're empathetic to that in each culture, cuz that alone could stop someone from being successful. Absolutely. You
Dr. Beverly Yates: know, a lot of us, our foods that we grew up with are our identity. It's part of our culture, part of our heritage.
For many people, if you ask them to make nutrition changes and you don't respect their cultural frame of reference, you will lose them. They will not be successful because it's just too hard to close the gap instead. Show them how to eat those cultural foods in the healthiest ways possible. So like a simple example for myself as an African American, for a lot of us, you know, in our cooking traditions let's say we made something like collard greens.
Collard [00:38:00] greens historically may have been made with a lot of fat back. You know, so the fat, let's say from a pig and a pork belly or bacon, things of that nature, right? Hamhocks et cetera. Instead, you could easily use Turkey wings or you could leave the meat out entirely and make it. Water primarily.
Lots of spices to make it flavorful and rich to the tongue and the kinds of flavors that we culturally enjoy minus the
JJ Virgin: unhealthy oil. And Dr. Beverly's amazing chef too. So you've got the, I remember you were telling me about using collard greens for lettuce wraps. I'm like, I would never think of this.
You can. I'm so good. Good. You know, you know, just blanch 'em and,
Dr. Beverly Yates: and you're good to go. And I'm so blessed. My husband and I, we met in college at mit. He's also our chef for our big family meals. And I do more of the day to day cooking and you know, the recipes that are in my Heart Health book and in my upcoming diabetes book, it's all flavorful.
And we tell people how to change the spice profile. So you're comfortable. So if you're someone who doesn't like hot, spicy peppers, you're [00:39:00] okay. Excuse me, we won't use a flame thrower. Excuse me a sec. So we don't have spices that are flamethrower on there because you know, you don't wanna make people uncomfortable buying the same token, if your cultural reference is more spicy foods, whether it's the hot side of spice or just simply more.
We got you. So whoever are, you're welcome. I try to be inclusive and invite people in and make it, so that's one more way that they can succeed and not the primary reason they fail. And you have
JJ Virgin: recipes on your website
Dr. Beverly Yates: too? Yeah. Awesome. I the share my eBooks, they, they're, they're sprinkled out. Interestingly now that I think about it.
The CGM ebook, as much as it talks about it, makes it real and shows practical user experiences and friends, please do download that ebook. There's no recipes in that. It's probably the one thing that does not have recipes. Everything else does. Well,
JJ Virgin: we will. We will make sure they're led over to your website too, because every time I talk to you, I'm like, you talk about going to the farmer's market and what you're cooking, and I'm like, I am coming over.
I'm coming over. That'd be
Dr. Beverly Yates: great. Love to have you come visit .
JJ Virgin: All right, well, thank you so much and everyone [00:40:00] again,
All right, now you know how to use a cgm. And I gotta tell you, I've been playing around with a couple different CGMs out there and it has been so eye-opening because again, you can spot food intolerances you can see if something is stressing you out. You know, they're so amazing. So I highly recommend downloading Dr.
Beverly's book. You can get that again at and checking. The CGMs out there. I've been doing a lot with NutraSense and so check those out because this is a great thing for you to do. We'll put in the show notes too, how to access that Nutri Sense cgm, but such an easy thing to wear I think makes a ton of sense to wear it for a month or two and really figure out what's going on with you, especially if you are in that, you [00:41:00] know, topsy-turvy, time of menopause when things are all sort of making the big shift.
I'll see you next time. If you have not yet subscribed, it's so easy. Just go to and you'll get all hooked up.


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