Beat back high blood sugar with the power of D

There's just something about these last few weeks of summer.

It's the perfect time to take a brisk walk while the days are still warm and the nights are starting to get cool again.

As the sun rises later... and sets earlier... it's even more important to soak up some of that sunshine while you can.

It's a great way to load up on the "sunshine vitamin," vitamin D!

If you've been reading my eTips for a while, you know that this miracle mineral can keep bones strong through menopause as well as keep dementia at bay and improve your mood.

And new research out of Japan shows that a daily dose of vitamin D is also a simple way to keep your glucose levels out of the danger zone.

The new study of healthy adults found that even low doses of vitamin D -- about 420 IU daily for a year -- can shave three points off your fasting glucose levels. The subjects in the study saw an average drop from 88.3 down to 85.3 mg/dL.

Mainstream docs may give the "thumbs up" as long as it's below 100, but the latest science out there indicates that it's better to keep your blood sugar levels below 80 if you can, and no higher than 90.

In fact, a 2008 study showed that folks with fasting blood glucose levels in the "safe range" of 95 to 99 were more than TWICE as likely to develop diabetes; and folks in the 90 to 94 range were 50 percent more likely to progress to diabetes.

In a related study, otherwise healthy men with FBG of 85 or higher had significantly higher heart disease risk than those who kept it below 81.

While a vitamin D supplement -- I recommend about 2,000 IU daily -- is a great addition to your daily arsenal for many reasons, it doesn't have to work alone.

Following a natural, healthy diet that restricts carbs and increases your protein and good fat intake can help manage your blood sugar levels in the long run. The Paleo diet focuses on meats, veggies and fruits and omits processed foods or foods with refined sugars so you'll keep those glucose numbers well below "normal."

And as I shared with you recently, you can also control your blood sugar by just walking on a daily basis.

So if that sun is still shining, grab your jacket and head outside!