Honey Bacon Rice Cakes and the Importance of Carbohydrates Timing!
Today I’d like to share a little bit about carbohydrate timing, blood sugar, and cortisol levels. This last post on adrenal fatigue is a tricky one, mainly because it really depends on the person. And like I mentioned before, this is just what’s been working for us in regards to preventing full blow adrenal fatigue.
Here’s a snippet of what can happen when cortisol and adrenals are not in homeostasis.
Elevated cortisol may be followed in time by an extended period of low cortisol if the adrenal glands fatigue as the result of constant over-stimulation and become less able to respond to stresses.* However, the health effects of the high cortisol phase may remain, now complicated by the adrenal fatigue.*
So stress (too much) can cause an imbalance of the cortisol levels. Cortisol is a hormone that helps maintain blood sugar levels. Cortisol, along with other hormones, is what you call a “stress” or “gluco-counter-regulatory” hormone – which means when it’s too high or too low, your blood sugar will rise. And during adrenal fatigue, cortisol levels may not be able to sustain blood glucose levels. Low cortisol combined with low glycogen reserves means the blood glucose will drop. source
From an athlete standpoint, we wanted to keep the glycogen levels in check and blood sugar stable. That means making sure the kiwi is getting the appropriate amount of carbs after his training and then focusing on nutrient dense foods to keep his blood sugar stable through out the day. So we focused on adding in a little more carbs and salt after intense training sessions as well as at dinner so that his blood sugar wouldn’t drop too low before bed.
- 4 cups of white rice (preferably sticky rice)
- honey or maple syrup (this can be however much or little you want here)
- 1/4 cup peanut butter or Nuttzo
- 1/3 cup chopped bacon or coconut bacon for vegans
- 2 tsp vanilla or butter extract (optional) – butter makes it’s more savory, vanilla more sweet.
- butter or coconut to mix into rice after cooking
- Optional add in- chopped dates
- Option 2 – add in a a few tbsp. of one of the following: peanut flour, coconut flour, or vanilla protein powder.
First, rinse your rice and let it soak for 20 minutes. Then cook according to directions in a large pot or rice cooker.
Note: Rice cooker works better for stickiness.
Once the rice is cooked, transfer to a large bowl and mix in a few tablespoons of coconut butter or butter and your protein powder or pb flour if you decide to go for option too. Then add in a fair amount of honey and your extracts. I think I mixed in at least 1/4 cup. Once that’s done, set aside and let it get sticky. Sometimes I like it sit overnight.
Next, oil your muffin pan. Spread half your rice mix into each muffin tin and press down to make it even. Then add in your nut butter and any extra’s you might want in the middle (like more bacon or chopped dates). Then refill the muffin tin with more rice mix. Once done with the filling, add the rest of your rice and press down to make even and flat. Bake at 375F for about 35-40 minutes. Just depends on your oven. I broiled the last minute to get the bacon extra crispy. Let it cool.
Once cooled, you can either can either coat with more protein or pb flour or leave it as is.
Makes about 12-16 muffins depending on the size of your pan. I use both small and medium.
These are great during long rides. You can also crumble them up and throw some eggs and plantains on top for a post long ride/run meal. Strange but good, right Laura?
Lastly, we increased the good fats (even more) in order to make sure he was absorbing all those fat soluble vitamins.
Like I said, trying to get your adrenals to function properly can be tricky, but I happy to report that this worked for us. The kiwi is sleeping better, training/recovering better, and is less stressed. Which is perfect because his next block of racing is coming up in a week!
The Cotter Cortisol Conclusion—> eat every 2-3 hrs, eat more good fat, don’t drop too low in carbohydrates for your training and recovery, sleep more, cut the caffeine, and add additional sea salt to drinks and food.
So whats your conclusion? Can what you eat and when you eat effect your cortisol levels?