Challenges help you to learn more during the Clear program. By testing similar products (or even the same products, but in a smaller portion or in a different order), the response of your glucose levels can be very different. Through these challenges you learn, for example, whether juice works well for you, or whether it is better to stick with a smoothie or a piece of fruit. You may improve your breakfast by taking a walk after you ate.

These challenges are optional: you do not have to perform them. They are fun to try out and can also teach you a little more about your personal metabolism.

We recommend that you perform these challenges at the same time of the day (for example around 8 in the morning) and make sure that you do not eat or drink anything else that contains calories for the 2 hours before and after: they can influence the outcome.

Challenge 1: Fruit vs. juice
Fruit consists of (mainly) fructose but also fiber. The fibers decrease the glucose peak. More fiber will most likely lower the peak. Juice contains less fiber than fruit.

Test a glass of fruit juice (for example apple juice or orange juice) and on another day, but at the same time of the day, test the fruit in its original form (for example an apple or an orange) and compare the glucose patterns.

Challenge 2: Breakfast with walking
Moderate exercise, such as riding a bike or taking a walk, can affect your glucose metabolism. In combination with exercise, you can flatten a glucose peak, because you are using some of the energy immediately.

For example, do you have breakfast with oatmeal and do you see an increase in your blood sugar after eating it? Try the same dish on another day and combine it with a (brisk) walk or a bit of cycling right after you have finished the meal. Compare the height of the glucose peaks with each other.

Challenge 3: White rice vs. brown rice
White rice is more likely to cause a peak compared to brown rice. Still, the effects can vary from person to person. An average portion of rice is between 75 and 100 grams.

Try a meal containing white rice and another day of the week try brown rice and compare the results. Make sure that the portion and meal timing are the same. Fats such as oil can dampen the glucose peak, so make sure you add about the same amount of fat in both meals.

Challenge 4: Juice vs. smoothie
Juices are high in sugars and low in fiber. Smoothies contain more fiber because the pulp is not filtered out. Smoothies also often contain more vegetables which are naturally rich in fiber and poor in sugars.

On the first day, test a glass of juice. On another day, at the same time, you drink a smoothie. Compare the glucose peaks with each other.

Challenge 5: Carb timing
The order in which you eat your meal can affect the response of your glucose levels. By first eating fats, fibers and proteins, it is possible to absorb the peak of a carbohydrate rich product afterwards.

On the first day (for example at lunch), eat a carbohydrate rich product such as bread. Then eat a low carbohydrate product such as soup, salad, meat, fish or eggs. On another day, at the same time of the day, reverse the order: first low carbohydrate products, then high carbohydrate products. Observe if the glucose peak is lower when you finish with the carbohydrates.

Challenge 6: Full portion vs. half portion
Portion size can have a significant impact on your glucose level. Over time, we have started to eat larger portions and also we tend to eat more often during the day.

Do you normally eat a standard portion of pasta (between 75 and 100 grams)? On another day, try a similar pasta meal with half a portion of pasta (between 35 and 50 grams). Add more vegetables, sauce and / or meat. Compare these peaks with each other.

Challenge 7: Sugar drink vs. diet drink
Soft drinks with sugars can cause your glucose levels to spike. This usually does not happen with diet sodas, but because a sugar-like product enters your body, it may be that your glucose goes down. Insulin is produced by your body to absorb the sugars, but the diet soda contains no real sugars.

Drink a glass of soda with sugar and observe the glucose peak. On another day, at the same time of the day, you drink a diet version of the soft drink. See if your glucose is going down and observe if you are experiencing a hypo or energy dip.
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