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What Happens When A Diabetic Has Too Much Sugar?

This Is What Happens To Your Body When You Eat Sugar

This Is What Happens To Your Body When You Eat Sugar

Oh, you don’t recall slurping down any of the hyper-sweet corn extract? Well, you did—about eight teaspoons’ worth, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In fact, the average American consumed 27 pounds of the stuff last year. But while 8 teaspoons of artificially manufactured syrup may seem like an awful lot, it’s only a drop in the sugar bucket. The USDA’s most recent figures find that Americans consume, on average, about 32 teaspoons of added sugar every single day. That sugar comes to us in the form of candies, ice cream and other desserts, yes. But the most troubling sugar of all isn’t the added sugar we consume on purpose; it’s the stuff we don’t even know we’re eating. In recent years, the medical community has begun to coalesce around a powerful new way of looking at added sugar: as perhaps the number one most significant health threat in America. But what exactly is “added sugar,” and why do experts suddenly believe that it’s the Freddy Kreuger of nutrition? Read on to find out—and to lose weight fast, read these essential 40 Ways to Lose 4 Inches of Body Fat! When they talk about “added sugar,” health experts aren’t talking about the stuff that we consume from eating whole foods. “Added sugars are sugars that are contributed during the processing or preparation of foods and beverages,” says Rachel K. Johnson, PhD, RD, professor of nutrition at The University of Vermont. So lactose, the sugar naturally found in milk and dairy products, and naturally occurring fructose, the sugar that appears in fruit, don’t count. But ingredients that are used in foods to provide added sweetness and calories, from the much-maligned high fructose corn syrup to healthier-sounding ones like agave, date syrup, cane sugar, and honey, Continue reading >>

When Your Blood Sugar Is Too High Or Too Low

When Your Blood Sugar Is Too High Or Too Low

Sometimes, no matter how hard you try to keep your blood sugar in the range your doctor has advised, it can be too high or too low. Blood sugar that is too high or too low can make you very sick. Here's how to handle these emergencies. What You Need to Know about High Blood Sugar If your blood sugar stays over 240, it is too high. High blood sugar usually comes on slowly. It happens when you don't have enough insulin in your body. High blood sugar can happen if you miss taking your diabetes medicine, eat too much, or don't get enough exercise. Sometimes, medicines you take for other problems may cause high blood sugar. Be sure to tell your doctor about other medicines you take. This chart shows the ranges of blood sugar. Having an infection or being sick or under stress can also make your blood sugar too high. That is why it is very important to test your blood and keep taking your medicine (insulin or diabetes pills) when you have an infection or are sick. Your blood sugar may be too high if you are very thirsty and tired, have blurry vision, are losing weight fast, and have to go to the bathroom often. Very high blood sugar may make you feel sick to your stomach, faint, or throw up. It can cause you to lose too much fluid from your body. Testing your blood sugar often, especially when you are sick, will warn you that your blood sugar may be rising too high. If your blood sugar stays over 300 when you check it two times in a row, call your doctor. You may need a change in your insulin shots or diabetes pills, or a change in your meal plan. *CGM-based treatment requires fingersticks for calibration, if patient is taking acetaminophen, or if symptoms/expectations do not match CGM readings, and if not performed, may result in hypoglycemia. Please see important risk and sa Continue reading >>

8 Signs You’re Eating Too Much Sugar

8 Signs You’re Eating Too Much Sugar

Sugar is delicious. Anyone who denies that is lying. But because life is unfair, sugar, especially in copious amounts, is really bad for your health. In fact, once you learn about all the ways sugar impacts your body, it's difficult to look at it the same way (despite knowing how heavenly it tastes). So how do you know if you're eating too much? Here are eight red flags your body is sending you that it's time to cut back on the sweet stuff. 1. You constantly crave sugary things. The more sugar you eat, the more you'll crave it. "More cravings then equal consuming more sugar—it becomes a vicious and addictive cycle," Brooke Alpert, M.S., R.D., author of The Sugar Detox: Lose Weight, Feel Great and Look Years Younger, tells SELF. This isn't just because your taste buds have adapted and left you needing more and more to get that same taste, but also because of how sugar gives you a high followed by a crash, just like an actual drug. "By eating a high sugar diet, you cause a hormonal response in your body that’s like a wave, it brings you up and then you crash down and it triggers your body to want more sugar." 2. You feel sluggish throughout the day. What goes up must come down. After sugar causes an initial spike of insulin and that "high" feeling, it causes an inevitable crash. "Energy is most stable when blood sugar is stable, so when you’re consuming too much sugar, the highs and lows of your blood sugar lead to highs and lows of energy," Alpert says. Eating a lot of sugar also means it's likely you're not eating enough protein and fiber, both important nutrients for sustained energy. 3. Your skin won't stop breaking out. "Some people are sensitive to getting a spike in insulin from sugar intake, which can set off a hormonal cascade that can lead to a breakout li Continue reading >>

Can You Have Low Blood Sugar With Type 2 Diabetes?

Can You Have Low Blood Sugar With Type 2 Diabetes?

back to Overview Know-how Type 2 A tag-team approach on low blood sugar with type 2 diabetes. Markus recently wrote an article on our German language blog talking about low blood sugar with type 2 diabetes. The question (“can I have low blood sugar with type 2 diabetes?”) is very common, and it’s easy to see why it’s of concern. So I’ve helped Markus bring his German post to life here in English. I hope it helps! Here’s Markus: Low blood sugar In 2014, results from the DAWN2 study were announced. It was the largest study of its kind (15,000 participants) on the “fears & needs of people with diabetes and their families.” One result stood out: The gravest fears are related to low blood sugars, especially at night. Up to 69% of the participants share this fear! So! Can you have low blood sugar with type 2 diabetes? Yes! Of course! But let’s think about who exactly is at risk – and why. It’s common to think: Type 1 diabetes = at risk for lows Type 2 diabetes = not at risk for lows But that isn’t correct at all, so we should wipe it from our mind. So… what do I need to know? Maybe it’s more accurate to say that people with type 2 diabetes who take certain types of medication are more at risk for lows. We’re getting closer! But to get to the truth, we should take a look at someone without diabetes. Is it possible for them to have lows, too? Theoretically yes, especially if doing long-lasting physical activities without proper food intake. Additionally, extreme stress and binge drinking are also common causes of low blood sugar for people without diabetes. However, it’s pretty rare because as soon as BG’s drop below 80 mg/dl (4.4 mmol/L), the natural counterregulatory system kicks in, raising blood sugar back to normal levels. I’ve never exp Continue reading >>

What Happens To Your Body When You Binge On Sugar

What Happens To Your Body When You Binge On Sugar

As mouth-watering as a sugar-laden sundae or icing-topped cupcake is, we should all know by now that sugar isn’t exactly healthy. In fact, it may be one of the worst things you can eat (that is, if you’re trying to live a long, healthy life). One study from UC San Francisco actually found that drinking sugary drinks like soda can age your body on a cellular level as quickly as cigarettes. The way the sweet stuff impacts your body is way more complex than just causing weight gain. In fact, when you eat a ton of sugar, almost every part of your body feels the strain—and that’s bad news for your health in both the short term and especially the long term. From an initial insulin spike to upping your chances of kidney failure down the road, this is what really happens in your body when you load up on sugar. Your brain responds to sugar the same way it would to cocaine. Eating sugar creates a surge of feel-good brain chemicals dopamine and serotonin. So does using certain drugs, like cocaine. And just like a drug, your body craves more after the initial high. “You then become addicted to that feeling, so every time you eat it you want to eat more,” explains Gina Sam, M.D., M.P.H., director of the Gastrointestinal Motility Center at The Mount Sinai Hospital. Your insulin spikes to regulate your blood sugar. “Once you eat glucose, your body releases insulin, a hormone from your pancreas,” Dr. Sam explains. The insulin’s job is to absorb the excess glucose in the blood and stabilize sugar levels. And a little while later you get that familiar sugar crash. Once the insulin does its job, your blood sugar drops again. Which means you’ve just experienced a sugar rush, and then a drastic drop, leaving you feeling drained. “That’s the feeling you get when you Continue reading >>

What Is High Blood Sugar?

What Is High Blood Sugar?

Have you ever tried to fly a remote control airplane or helicopter? If you steer too sharply one way, your plane will crash into the ground. And if you go too far in the opposite direction, the plane will nose directly upward, making it difficult to control. For people with diabetes, controlling blood sugar levels (or blood glucose levels) is kind of like piloting that plane. To stay in the air and have the most fun, you have to keep blood sugar levels steady. Having a blood sugar level that's too high can make you feel lousy, and having it often can be unhealthy. The blood glucose level is the amount of glucose in the blood. Glucose is a sugar that comes from the foods we eat, and it's also formed and stored inside the body. It's the main source of energy for the cells of our body, and it's carried to each cell through the bloodstream. Hyperglycemia (pronounced: hi-per-gly-SEE-me-uh) is the medical word for high blood sugar levels. High blood sugar levels happen when the body either can't make insulin (type 1 diabetes) or can't respond to insulin properly (type 2 diabetes). The body needs insulin so glucose in the blood can enter the cells of the body where it can be used for energy. In people who have developed diabetes, glucose builds up in the blood, resulting in hyperglycemia. Having too much sugar in the blood for long periods of time can cause serious health problems if it's not treated. Hyperglycemia can damage the vessels that supply blood to vital organs, which can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke, kidney disease, vision problems, and nerve problems in people with diabetes. These problems don't usually show up in kids or teens with diabetes who have had the disease for only a few years. However, these health problems can occur in adulthood in some Continue reading >>

What Does It Feel Like To Have High Blood Sugar Levels?

What Does It Feel Like To Have High Blood Sugar Levels?

The human body naturally has sugar, or glucose, in the blood. The right amount of blood sugar gives the body's cells and organs energy. The liver and muscles produce some blood sugar, but most of it comes from food and drinks that contain carbohydrates. In order to keep blood sugar levels within a normal range, the body needs insulin. Insulin is a hormone that takes blood sugar and delivers it to the body's cells. Contents of this article: What does it feel like to have high blood sugar levels? Blood sugar is fuel for the body's organs and functions. But having high blood sugar doesn't provide a boost in energy. In fact, it's often the opposite. Because the body's cells can't access the blood sugar for energy, a person may feel tiredness, hunger, or exhaustion frequently. In addition, high sugar in the blood goes into the kidneys and urine, which attracts more water, causing frequent urination. This can also lead to increased thirst, despite drinking enough liquids. High blood sugar can cause sudden or unexplained weight loss. This occurs because the body's cells aren't getting the glucose they need, so the body burns muscle and fat for energy instead. High blood sugar can also cause numbness, burning, or tingling in the hands, legs, and feet. This is caused by diabetic neuropathy, a complication of diabetes that often occurs after many years of high blood sugar levels. What does high blood sugar mean for the rest of the body? Over time, the body's organs and systems can be harmed by high blood sugar. Blood vessels become damaged, and this can lead to complications, including: Damage to the eye and loss of vision Kidney disease or failure Nerve problems in the skin, especially the feet, leading to sores, infections, and wound healing problems Causes of high blood sugar Continue reading >>

What A High Blood Sugar Feels Like.

What A High Blood Sugar Feels Like.

The American Diabetes Association cites the following symptoms as indicative of high blood sugar: High blood glucose [Editor’s note: Duh] High levels of sugar in the urine Frequent urination Increased thirst And if high blood sugar goes untreated? “Hyperglycemia can be a serious problem if you don’t treat it, so it’s important to treat as soon as you detect it. If you fail to treat hyperglycemia, a condition called ketoacidosis (diabetic coma) could occur. Ketoacidosis develops when your body doesn’t have enough insulin. Without insulin, your body can’t use glucose for fuel, so your body breaks down fats to use for energy. When your body breaks down fats, waste products called ketones are produced. Your body cannot tolerate large amounts of ketones and will try to get rid of them through the urine. Unfortunately, the body cannot release all the ketones and they build up in your blood, which can lead to ketoacidosis.” – ADA website But what does a high blood sugar feel like? Because when you see someone who is working through an elevated blood sugar, they may not look terribly out of sorts. But what is happening inside of them is real, and plays out in a myriad of ways for every person with diabetes. I’ve tried to write about it several times, but each high is different, and affects me in different ways: “It’s a thick feeling in the base of your brain, like someone’s cracked open your head and replaced your gray matter with sticky jam. I find myself zoning out and staring at things, and my eyeballs feel dry and like they’re tethered to my head by frayed ropes instead of optic nerves. Everything is slow and heavy and whipped with heavy cream.” – Oh, High! “There’s something about a high blood sugar that makes my body feel weighted down, l Continue reading >>

Common Questions About Blood Sugar

Common Questions About Blood Sugar

How often should I test my blood sugar? This is a very common question, and the answer isn't the same for everyone. In general, you should test as often as you need to get helpful information. There's no point in testing if the information you get doesn't help you manage your diabetes. If you've been told to test at certain times, but you don't know why or what to do with the test results, then testing won't seem very meaningful. Here are some general guidelines for deciding how often to test: If you can only test once a day, then do it before breakfast. Keep a written record so that you can see the pattern of the numbers. If you control your blood sugar by diet and exercise only, this once-a-day test might be enough. If you take medicine (diabetes pills or insulin), you will probably want to know how well that medicine is working. The general rule is to test before meals and keep a record. If you want to know how your meals affect your blood sugar, testing about 2 hours after eating can be helpful. Test whenever you feel your blood sugar is either too high or too low. Testing will give you important information about what you need to do to raise or lower your blood sugar. If you take more than 2 insulin shots a day or use an insulin pump, you should test 4 to 6 times a day. You should test more often if you're having unusually high or low readings, if you're sick, under more stress than usual, or are pregnant. If you change your schedule or travel, you should also test your blood sugar more often than usual. Talk to a member of your health care team about how often to test based on your personal care plan. What should my test numbers be? There isn't one blood sugar target that's right for everyone with diabetes. It's important to work with your health care team to set Continue reading >>

All About Diabetes

All About Diabetes

What is Diabetes Mellitus? Diabetes means your blood has too much sugar called glucose. This happens because your body does not make enough of a hormone called insulin or because your body doesn’t respond well to insulin. Where does insulin come from? Insulin is a hormone that is made by cells in your pancreas. Where does glucose in my blood come from? Your body changes much of the food you eat into sugar called glucose. Glucose travels in the blood to all cells in your body. Your body’s cells need glucose to function and give you energy. How does glucose go into my cells? The glucose goes from your blood into your cells with the help of insulin. Without insulin, your cells cannot get the glucose they need. Our body’s cells need this glucose to give them energy to function. By moving glucose from your blood to your body’s cells, insulin helps to keep your blood glucose level normal (not too high or too low). When you do not have enough insulin or your cells don’t respond well to insulin to normalize your blood glucose, you have diabetes. You can suffer the complications of diabetes that come from your blood glucose being high over a long period of time. High blood glucose can damage the smallest blood vessels and nerves in your body. This happens slowly and irreversibly over time without many symptoms until the symptoms are severe. These complications and symptoms can include: Cardiovascular disease: Heart disease or stroke Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA): Can lead to a diabetic coma or death due to high blood glucose Eyes: Cataracts, glaucoma, disorders to the retina, blindness Foot complications: Nerve damage, calluses, foot ulcers, poor circulation, amputation Kidney disease: Chronic kidney disease, kidney failure Mental health: Stress, sadness, anger, denial, Continue reading >>

How To Bring Down High Blood Sugar Levels

How To Bring Down High Blood Sugar Levels

Tweet Having high blood sugar levels can be discomforting and many people wish to know what they can do to help to bring down high blood glucose levels. We look at some of the options for lowering blood glucose in the short term. High blood sugar is commonly known as hyperglycemia. What are the signs of high blood sugar? The classic symptoms of high blood glucose levels are: Feeling very thirsty Needing to go the toilet often Having a dry mouth Feeling tired/lethargic Feeling uncomfortable and irritable Check your blood sugar If you have take medication that may cause low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), it’s highly advisable to check your blood sugar levels before you try to bring your sugar levels down. This is just in case your blood sugar is normal or low, which can be the case in some situations. Testing of blood sugar before bringing your levels down is particularly important if you take insulin. When to call for medical advice It is important to note that very high blood glucose levels can be dangerous and it is important to be aware of the symptoms and risk factors of the following conditions: Diabetic ketoacidosis - a short term complication most commonly associated with type 1 diabetes Hyperosmolar Hyperglycaemic State - a short term complication most commonly associated with type 1 diabetes If you are struggling to keep your blood glucose levels under control, speak to your GP or consultant who can advise you or refer you onto a diabetes education course. Correcting high blood sugar levels with insulin If you take insulin, one way to reduce blood sugar is to inject insulin. However, be careful as insulin can take 4 hours or longer to be fully absorbed, so you need to make sure you take into account how much insulin you may already have in your body that is yet t Continue reading >>

Ate Too Much Sugar? 9 Tricks To Help Reverse The Binge

Ate Too Much Sugar? 9 Tricks To Help Reverse The Binge

Step 1: Realize what's going on ivosevicv/iStock One moment you're wired; the next, you're making a beeline to the couch. What gives? Your body goes on a physical and emotional roller coaster after too many sweets. "The minute you put a sweet in your mouth, you get a surge of dopamine, a feel-good hormone with addictive properties," says Amanda Bontempo, RD, a nutritionist at NYU Langone's Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center. As sugar floods your bloodstream, the pancreas releases insulin to control blood glucose levels. This suppresses the "fullness" hormone leptin, which makes your brain give you the green light to grab more candy. Glucose is rapidly digested, and your spiked dopamine and blood sugar levels fall quickly. "The crash depends on the person. It can be 15 minutes to a couple of hours after eating," says Bontempo. "Your instinct is to eat more sugar to get another jolt of energy, but it's really important to resist. Once your willpower bank is tapped, it becomes increasingly challenging to make healthy choices." These foods have way more sugar than you realized. Step 2: Have a spoonful of peanut butter AnthonyRosenberg/iStock After a sugar binge, you may want to swear off all calories. However, eating food with other nutrients helps ward off that undesirable sugar crash caused by quick digestion. "A spoonful of peanut butter or handful of nuts gives you fat and protein to slow digestion," says Jennifer Powell Weddig, PhD, RDN, a professor of nutrition at Metropolitan State University of Denver. "Or try hummus with vegetables, which have fiber that helps slow the absorption of simple sugars." Start adopting these habits to kick your sugar cravings for good. Step 3: Take the stairs izf/iStock Resist the temptation to nap. "Get moving," says Bontempo. "Th Continue reading >>

Can You Get Diabetes From Eating Too Much Sugar?

Can You Get Diabetes From Eating Too Much Sugar?

Sugar is irresistible to most people. So irresistible, in fact, that sugar cravings might be rooted in evolution. Craving sugary foods, or so the theory goes, could help prevent starvation. In a modern world, however, where food is often plentiful, sugar consumption is linked to diabetes, obesity, and other health problems. Research into the connection between sugar consumption and diabetes is ongoing. Most doctors argue that sugar alone does not trigger diabetes. But some emerging research suggests a closer link between sugar consumption and diabetes than was previously thought. Can people get diabetes from eating too much sugar? Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes affect the body's ability to regulate blood glucose levels. But eating sugar will not cause type 1 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition, which causes the body to attack cells that produce insulin. Damage to these cells undermines the body's ability to manage blood glucose. Type 2 diabetes is more complex. Sugar consumption will not directly cause diabetes. However, excess sugar consumption can cause weight gain. Obesity increases the risk of diabetes. Once a person has diabetes, eating too much sugar can make symptoms worse, since diabetes makes it more difficult for the body to manage blood sugar levels. Understanding the link between sugar and diabetes Although eating sugar is not directly linked to developing diabetes, some evidence suggests that increased overall availability of sugar makes diabetes more common. A 2013 study that looked at 175 different countries found that more sugar in the food supply increased diabetes rates. Specifically, for every additional 150 calories of sugar available per day per person, diabetes levels rose 1 percent. This change continued even when researchers con Continue reading >>

High Blood Sugar Symptoms

High Blood Sugar Symptoms

If you’ve had diabetes for any length of time at all, you’ve probably seen lists of the signs and symptoms of high blood glucose dozens of times. Doctors and diabetes educators hand them out. Hundreds of websites reprint them. Most diabetes books list them. You likely know some of the items on the list by heart: thirst, frequent urination, blurry vision, slow healing of cuts, and more. But have you ever stopped to wonder why these symptoms occur? How does high blood glucose cause frequent urination, make your vision go blurry, or cause all of those other things to happen? Here are some answers to explain what’s going on in your body when you have high blood glucose. Setting the stage for high blood glucose High blood glucose (called hyperglycemia by medical professionals) is the defining characteristic of all types of diabetes. It happens when the body can no longer maintain a normal blood glucose level, either because the pancreas is no longer making enough insulin, or because the body’s cells have become so resistant to insulin that the pancreas cannot keep up, and glucose is accumulating in the bloodstream rather than being moved into the cells. What is high blood sugar? Blood glucose is commonly considered too high if it is higher than 130 mg/dl before a meal or higher than 180 mg/dl two hours after the first bite of a meal. However, most of the signs and symptoms of high blood glucose don’t appear until the blood glucose level is higher than 250 mg/dl. Some of the symptoms have a rapid onset, while others require a long period of high blood glucose to set in. It’s important to note that individuals differ in their sensitivity to the effects of high blood glucose: Some people feel symptoms more quickly or more strongly than others. But each sign or sympt Continue reading >>

High Blood Sugar Basics

High Blood Sugar Basics

High blood sugar, called hyperglycemia, is one of the defining characteristics of diabetes. When people are diagnosed with diabetes, it means their blood sugar has been high, usually for a long period of time. There are two ways high blood sugar can be monitored: Self-tests using a glucose meter that measures your blood sugar at a specific moment The A1C test performed by your doctor, which shows your average blood sugar level over the past 2-3 months Over time, high blood sugar can lead to serious long-term health problems. The good news is that scientific studies have proven that control of blood sugar may help delay or even prevent diabetes complications – get started by learning more about the signs and causes of high blood sugar and tips to help prevent its development. Click here to test your knowledge about blood sugar. What happens when you have high blood sugar? Insulin is a hormone needed for proper control of blood sugar. Specifically, insulin helps move sugar from your blood into most of your body’s cells, where sugar is used for energy. In patients with type 2 diabetes, the pancreas does not make enough insulin, and/or the insulin that the pancreas makes does not work the way that it should. As a result, sugar in the blood cannot enter most cells and the cells are unable to use this sugar for energy, while the liver makes too much sugar. This in turn, causes blood sugar levels to get too high, which can cause serious long-term health problems. High blood sugar symptoms When sugar levels become high, you may experience: Dry mouth, unusual thirst Frequent urination Fatigue Blurred vision Headaches Unintentional weight loss However, some patients with type 2 diabetes may have no symptoms. What should I do if I have symptoms? If you haven’t al Continue reading >>

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