Skip to main navigation Skip to main content Skip to footer For Medicare For Providers For Brokers For Employers Español For Individuals & Families: For Individuals & Families Medical Dental Other Supplemental Explore coverage through work How to Buy Health Insurance Types of Dental Insurance Open Enrollment vs. Special Enrollment See all topics Shop for Medicare plans Member Guide Find a Doctor Log in to myCigna
Home Knowledge Center Wellness Library Quick-Sugar Foods

Quick-Sugar Foods

Overview

If you are at risk for low blood sugar levels because of diabetes or some other health condition, you need to keep some type of quick-sugar food with you at all times. These foods can quickly raise your blood sugar level. Eating quick-sugar food raises your blood sugar in 10 to 15 minutes.

Choose fast-acting carbohydrates.
  • Check nutrition labels for carbohydrate content. Glucose or sucrose is the best choice.
  • Liquids will raise your blood sugar faster than solid foods.
  • Many adults use 15 grams of carbohydrate to raise blood sugar.
  • Children usually need less than 15 grams of carbohydrate. For example, a child under 5 years old might only need 5 grams, and a child 5 to 10 years old might only need 10 grams. Every child is different. Check with your doctor or diabetes educator for the amount that is right for your child's current age and weight.
Do not use any food that contains fat or protein.

Fat and protein can slow how quickly your body absorbs carbohydrates. For example, regular cake frosting is made with both sugar and fat. It's not a good choice as a quick-sugar food. When in doubt, ask your doctor or diabetes educator.

Examples of quick-sugar foods

These quick-sugar foods will help raise your blood sugar in an emergency, because they are made from almost all carbohydrates. This table is just a guide.

Foods that help raise blood sugar

Food

Amount

Glucose tablets

3 to 4 tablets

Table sugar

1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons)

Honey

1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons)

Fruit juice or regular (not diet) soda pop

½ to ¾ cup (4 to 6 ounces)

Hard candy

6 Life Savers

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

© 1995-2022 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

Related Links

Type 2 Diabetes Diabetes in Children: Treating Low Blood Sugar Diabetes-Related High and Low Blood Sugar Levels Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar) in People Without Diabetes

<cipublic-spinner variant="large"><span>Loading…</span></cipublic-spinner>

Page Footer

I want to...

Get an ID card File a claim View my claims and EOBs Check coverage under my plan See prescription drug list Find an in-network doctor, dentist, or facility Find a form Find 1095-B tax form information View the Cigna Glossary Contact Cigna

Audiences

Individuals and Families Medicare Employers Brokers Providers

Secure Member Sites

myCigna member portal Health Care Provider portal Cigna for Employers Client Resource Portal Cigna for Brokers

Cigna Company Information

About Cigna Company Profile Careers Newsroom Investors Suppliers Third Party Administrators International Evernorth

 Cigna. All rights reserved.

Privacy Legal Product Disclosures Cigna Company Names Customer Rights Accessibility Non-Discrimination Notice [PDF] Language Assistance [PDF] Report Fraud Sitemap

Disclaimer

Individual and family medical and dental insurance plans are insured by Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company (CHLIC), Cigna HealthCare of Arizona, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Illinois, Inc., and Cigna HealthCare of North Carolina, Inc. Group health insurance and health benefit plans are insured or administered by CHLIC, Connecticut General Life Insurance Company (CGLIC), or their affiliates (see a listing of the legal entities  that insure or administer group HMO, dental HMO, and other products or services in your state). Accidental Injury, Critical Illness, and Hospital Care plans or insurance policies are distributed exclusively by or through operating subsidiaries of Cigna Corporation, are administered by Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, and are insured by either (i) Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company (Bloomfield, CT); (ii) Life Insurance Company of North America (“LINA”) (Philadelphia, PA); or (iii) New York Life Group Insurance Company of NY (“NYLGICNY”) (New York, NY), formerly known as Cigna Life Insurance Company of New York. The Cigna name, logo, and other Cigna marks are owned by Cigna Intellectual Property, Inc. LINA and NYLGICNY are not affiliates of Cigna.

All insurance policies and group benefit plans contain exclusions and limitations. For availability, costs and complete details of coverage, contact a licensed agent or Cigna sales representative. This website is not intended for residents of New Mexico.

Selecting these links will take you away from Cigna.com to another website, which may be a non-Cigna website. Cigna may not control the content or links of non-Cigna websites. Details