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Carbs And Low Blood Sugar

Treating Low Blood Sugars Quickly

Treating Low Blood Sugars Quickly

Unless you are eating a meal right away, the best treatment for lows is a combination of simple and complex carbohydrates plus some protein. Quickly treating lows lessens stress hormone release and lowers the chance of the blood sugar going high after a reaction. You'll feel better if the body is quickly resupplied with the fuel it needs.Your brain, muscles and other cells will thank you for not prolonging their misery. Eat 15 to 20 grams of fast acting carbohydrates immediately. Consider how much unused bolus insulin may still be active. Decide whether complex carbohydrates and/or protein are needed to keep you stable until you eat your next meal. Test your blood sugar 30 minutes later to make sure it has risen. Repeat step 1 if necessary. After a moderate or severe low blood sugar, wait 30 to 45 minutes before driving or operating machinery. A return to normal coordination and thinking is slower than the return to a normal blood sugar. You may need to eat more than 20 grams for a low: when you took a carb bolus for a meal but never ate it. when it has been only an hour or two since your last injection of rapid insulin. when you have been more physically active. Glucose is the "sugar" in blood sugar and may also be referred to as dextrose on labels. It comes in tablets, such as Dex4 or BD Glucose tablets, and in certain candies like Sweet Tarts. Glucose breaks down quickly and reaches the blood as 100 percent glucose, which makes it the best choice for raising the blood sugar quickly. Another good product for raising your glucose is Glucolift Glucose Tablets . Table sugar consists of one glucose molecule and one fructose molecule, so when it breaks down in the stomach, only half is immediately available as glucose. Fruit juices, like orange juice, contain mostly fruct Continue reading >>

How To Treat A Low Blood Glucose

How To Treat A Low Blood Glucose

A blood glucose of less than 70 mg/dl in general is considered a low blood glucose. Because you may feel some of the symptoms of low blood glucose when your glucose is normal, be sure, if possible, to check your blood glucose when you think it is low. The symptoms of a low blood glucose are: Sweaty and shaky Weak Headache Confused Irritable Hungry Pale Rapid heart rate Uncoordinated If your blood glucose is low, follow the steps below to treat: Follow the 15-15 rule: Eat or drink something from the list below equal to 15 grams of carbohydrate (carb). Rest for 15 minutes, then re-check your blood glucose. If it is still low, (below 70), repeat step 1 above. If your next meal is more than an hour away, you will need to eat one carbohydrate choice as a snack to keep your blood glucose from going low again. If you can't figure out why you have low blood glucose, call your healthcare provider, as your medicine may need to be adjusted. Always carry something with you to treat an insulin reaction. Use food from the list below. Foods equal to One Carbohydrate Choice (15 grams of carb): 3 Glucose tablets or 4 Dextrose tablets 4 ounces of fruit juice 5-6 ounces (about 1/2 can) of regular soda such as Coke or Pepsi 7-8 gummy or regular Life Savers 1 Tbsp. of sugar or jelly Call your doctor Call your doctor or healthcare provider if you have a low blood glucose reaction and do not know what caused it. If you pass out If you have type 1 diabetes and you do not take care of low blood glucose, you may pass out. If you do, a drug called glucagon should be injected into your skin, like you do with insulin. This can be done by a family member or friend who has been taught how to do it. Since glucagon may cause you to vomit, you should be placed on your side when the injection is given. I Continue reading >>

Will Low-carb Diets Cause Blood Sugar Levels To Drop?

Will Low-carb Diets Cause Blood Sugar Levels To Drop?

Video of the Day If you're accustomed to eating a very high-carb diet and suddenly switch to a very low-carb diet, you could experience rather dramatic drops in your blood sugar during the first few days or weeks of your transition. This low blood sugar can cause notably uncomfortable side effects and intense cravings. Carbs and Blood Sugar Your body converts consumed carbohydrates into glucose, a type of sugar. When the glucose enters your bloodstream, it leads to an increase in your blood sugar level. The pancreas produces insulin in response to spikes in blood sugar, which helps your body store the sugar for energy. This insulin release subsides when your cells absorb the sugar and your levels stabilize. In a healthy body, the surge of blood sugar and insulin is relatively moderate and keeps you evenly motoring through your day. When you eat lots of carbohydrates, your body's blood sugar remains consistently high and your system constantly pumps out insulin. This chronic elevation of blood sugar and release of insulin causes inflammation, an increase in fat storage and an inability to burn stored fat. Chronically high blood sugar levels increase your risk of disease, including heart disease and type 2 diabetes. You crave carbohydrates regularly for energy, because your body isn't efficient at using stored fat for fuel. How a Low-Carb Diet Impacts Blood Sugar If you regularly consume a large amount of carbohydrates, especially refined ones like white bread and soda, you may experience a notable drop in blood sugar when you drastically reduce your carb intake. In the first week of carb reduction, your body will seek to maintain your high sugar intake. You'll crave carbohydrates and may even feel weak because your body hasn't yet become efficient at burning fat for fuel Continue reading >>

How Do Low-carb Diets Affect Blood Glucose Levels?

How Do Low-carb Diets Affect Blood Glucose Levels?

Low-carb diets are all about balancing blood sugar (blood glucose) levels. Beyond weight loss, we eat low-carb diets to keep our blood sugar normal and stable. To fully understand the connection, it's helpful to first familiarize yourself with how the body processes blood sugar in a normal state and even explore how that changes when there's a problem, such as in diabetics. What Do Carbohydrates Have to Do With Blood Glucose? Carbohydrates have everything to with blood glucose. All foods with carbohydrate -- whether rice, jelly beans, or watermelon -- break down to simple sugars in our bodies turning into glucose through metabolic processes. This process is what causes our blood glucose to rise. The carbohydrate in most starchy foods (potatoes, bread) is simply a collection of long chains of glucose, which break down quickly and raise blood sugar . What Do Our Bodies Do When Blood Sugar is High? When our blood sugar goes up, our body responds by secreting insulin to stabilize it. The sugar is then taken out of the blood and converted into fat; insulin's primary function is facilitating the storage of extra sugar in the blood as fat. Diabetics are unable to balance blood sugar when the process of converting food to energy takes place. When sugar levels are high, the ability of cells in the pancreas to make insulin goes down. The pancreas overcompensates for this lack of insulin and insulin levels stay high, as does blood sugar. Over time, the pancreas is permanently damaged and other bodily functions are affected such as hardened blood vessels, among other ailments. What are the Problems with Blood Sugar Going Up? However, for many people, this metabolic process works fine. Sometimes, though, people reach a point in their lives when it goes awry (or it doesn't work well Continue reading >>

Low Blood Glucose (hypoglycemia)

Low Blood Glucose (hypoglycemia)

What is hypoglycemia? Hypoglycemia, also called low blood glucose or low blood sugar, occurs when the level of glucose in your blood drops below normal. For many people with diabetes, that means a level of 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or less. Your numbers might be different, so check with your health care provider to find out what level is too low for you. What are the symptoms of hypoglycemia? Symptoms of hypoglycemia tend to come on quickly and can vary from person to person. You may have one or more mild-to-moderate symptoms listed in the table below. Sometimes people don’t feel any symptoms. Severe hypoglycemia is when your blood glucose level becomes so low that you’re unable to treat yourself and need help from another person. Severe hypoglycemia is dangerous and needs to be treated right away. This condition is more common in people with type 1 diabetes. Hypoglycemia Symptoms Mild-to-Moderate Severe Shaky or jittery Sweaty Hungry Headachy Blurred vision Sleepy or tired Dizzy or lightheaded Confused or disoriented Pale Uncoordinated Irritable or nervous Argumentative or combative Changed behavior or personality Trouble concentrating Weak Fast or irregular heart beat Unable to eat or drink Seizures or convulsions (jerky movements) Unconsciousness Some symptoms of hypoglycemia during sleep are crying out or having nightmares sweating enough to make your pajamas or sheets damp feeling tired, irritable, or confused after waking up What causes hypoglycemia in diabetes? Hypoglycemia can be a side effect of insulin or other types of diabetes medicines that help your body make more insulin. Two types of diabetes pills can cause hypoglycemia: sulfonylureas and meglitinides . Ask your health care team if your diabetes medicine can cause hypoglycemia. Although ot Continue reading >>

How To Cut Carbs When You Suffer From Hypoglycemia

How To Cut Carbs When You Suffer From Hypoglycemia

How to Cut Carbs When You Suffer From Hypoglycemia How to Cut Carbs When You Suffer From Hypoglycemia So youre trying to lean out , and youre cutting down on carbs . But every time you swap out the rice for more greens and you hit the gym, you end up shaky, nauseous, cold, and clammy, and youre stuck with a killer migraine for the rest of the day. Sound familiar? You could be dealing with low blood sugar, also known as reactive hypoglycemia. As a nutritionist, I have many clients who struggle with this issuebut theyre often unsure how to manage it. When your blood sugar levels take a nosedive, dieting becomes difficult, if not impossible. Every time you try to eat less or exercise more, you crash hard and crave fast carbs to get your blood sugar up. If youre struggling with reactive hypoglycemia but still want to lose weight , heres how to make it work. Reactive hypoglycemia occurs when blood sugar levels drop too low about 3-4 hours after eating carbohydrates. This can be a result of your body consistently releasing too much insulin for the amount of carbohydrates you eat. When thats the case, every time your body signals for insulin release, it removes more carbohydrates from your bloodstream than you need. When blood sugar drops too low, symptoms like dizziness, nausea, and headaches can occur. These symptoms are alleviated by eating carbohydrates. The only problem: If youre cutting, eating more carbohydrates probably isnt part of your fat-loss strategy. Exercise is great for weight loss, but can be dangerous if you have hypoglycemia. In addition to overactive insulin release, hypoglycemia can also be caused by underactive glycogen release. Glycogen is your bodys storage form of carbohydrates, so your body releases it to keep your blood sugar at a safe level when yo Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia And Low-carb

Hypoglycemia And Low-carb

Many people know that low blood sugar or hypoglycemia (HG) is usually associated with persons with type-1 diabetes. Their blood sugars are often very labile –going too high and dropping too low. In this situation HG not only causes severe symptoms that diminish one’s quality of life but can be lethal. One of the benefits of carbohydrate restriction in a person with type-1 is that blood-sugar swings even out with more moderate highs and far less hypoglycemic reactions. One reason why this happens is because we are able to decrease medications including insulin that a person with type-1 diabetes must take. Reactive Hypoglycemia: Lots of People Have It The purpose of this article is to talk about reactive hypoglycemia (RHG), a far more common occurrence. It is often unrecognized and undiagnosed. It is not likely to cause death but is associated with a long list of symptoms that can interfere with everyday life. Symptoms of RHG are often treated with prescription drugs but because it is the result of lifestyle it should be treated with lifestyle changes. Reactive hypoglycemia or low blood sugar is not the opposite of diabetes (high blood sugar). It is the same condition just an earlier phase. When one eats too many carbs, especially simple sugars and starches, glucose is digested and dumps in the blood quickly. The body responds by making insulin to carry glucose into the cells for energy. Any excess glucose is stored as glycogen and when the glycogen store is full, the glucose gets stored as fat in fat cells. There are a number of factors than can lead to diabetes. If a person has a genetic risk for diabetes they are likely to be carbohydrate intolerant to some degree. This means their cells may be resistant to the effects of insulin requiring more and more to be produ Continue reading >>

Reactive Hypoglycemia - Hypos After Eating

Reactive Hypoglycemia - Hypos After Eating

Tweet Reactive hypoglycemia is the general term for having a hypo after eating, which is when blood glucose levels become dangerously low following a meal. Also known as postprandial hypoglycemia, drops in blood sugar are usually recurrent and occur within four hours after eating. Reactive hypoglycemia can occur in both people with and without diabetes, and is thought to be more common in overweight individuals or those who have had gastric bypass surgery. What are the causes of reactive hypoglycemia? Scientists believe reactive hypoglycemia to be the result of too much insulin being produced and released by the pancreas following a large carbohydrate-based meal. This excess insulin production and secretion continues after the glucose derived from the meal has been digested, causing the amount of glucose in the bloodstream to fall to a lower-than-normal level. What causes this increase in pancreatic activity is unclear. One possible explanation is that in rare cases, a benign (non-cancerous) tumour in the pancreas may cause an overproduction of insulin, or too much glucose may be used up by the tumour itself. Another is that reactive hypoglycemia is caused by deficiencies in glucagon secretion. In the U.S. the National Institutes of Health (NIH) states that "the causes of most cases of reactive hypoglycemia are still open to debate". Signs and symptoms of reactive hypoglycemia Symptoms of reactive hypoglycemia can include: Anxiety Blurred vision Confusion Fatigue Headaches Heart palpitations Increased hunger Irritability Light-headedness Sleeping problems Sweating Weakness When talking about the signs of reactive hypoglycemia, it's important to note that many of these symptoms can be experienced without actually having low blood sugar. In fact, it is rare for such sympt Continue reading >>

Carbohydrates And Blood Sugar

Carbohydrates And Blood Sugar

When people eat a food containing carbohydrates, the digestive system breaks down the digestible ones into sugar, which enters the blood. As blood sugar levels rise, the pancreas produces insulin, a hormone that prompts cells to absorb blood sugar for energy or storage. As cells absorb blood sugar, levels in the bloodstream begin to fall. When this happens, the pancreas start making glucagon, a hormone that signals the liver to start releasing stored sugar. This interplay of insulin and glucagon ensure that cells throughout the body, and especially in the brain, have a steady supply of blood sugar. Carbohydrate metabolism is important in the development of type 2 diabetes, which occurs when the body can’t make enough insulin or can’t properly use the insulin it makes. Type 2 diabetes usually develops gradually over a number of years, beginning when muscle and other cells stop responding to insulin. This condition, known as insulin resistance, causes blood sugar and insulin levels to stay high long after eating. Over time, the heavy demands made on the insulin-making cells wears them out, and insulin production eventually stops. Glycemic index In the past, carbohydrates were commonly classified as being either “simple” or “complex,” and described as follows: Simple carbohydrates: These carbohydrates are composed of sugars (such as fructose and glucose) which have simple chemical structures composed of only one sugar (monosaccharides) or two sugars (disaccharides). Simple carbohydrates are easily and quickly utilized for energy by the body because of their simple chemical structure, often leading to a faster rise in blood sugar and insulin secretion from the pancreas – which can have negative health effects. Complex carbohydrates: These carbohydrates have mo Continue reading >>

Low Carb Vs. High Carb - My Surprising 24-day Diabetes Diet Battle

Low Carb Vs. High Carb - My Surprising 24-day Diabetes Diet Battle

Twitter summary: What I learned from doubling my carb intake: the same average blood sugar, but four times as much hypoglycemia, more work, stress, & danger. As a teenager, I ate a high carb diet that included lots of Goldfish crackers, white sandwich bread, pasta, and white potatoes. It was tasty, but it put my blood sugars on a wild roller coaster every single day. Things turned around in college when I learned about nutrition, got on CGM, and spent time with health conscious friends. I soon realized that eating less than 30 grams of carbs at one time was a complete gamechanger. I’ve stuck with that approach ever since. But is this lower carb method actually better for my blood sugars, or have I just been fooling myself? To find out, I took on a somewhat terrifying self-tracking experiment: 12 days of my usual, lower-carb diet, which averaged 146 grams of carbs per day (21% of daily calories). My carbs were primarily from nuts, seeds, vegetables, and a bit of fruit. 12 days of a higher-carb, high whole-grain diet, which averaged 313 grams of carbs per day (43% of my daily calories). My sources of carbs were NOT junk food: plain oatmeal, whole wheat bread, quinoa, wild rice, and fruit. Neither of these was unrealistic. My lower-carb diet was nowhere near Atkins level (20 grams per day), and the higher-carb diet was consistent with the “average” 45% carb diet in people with diabetes (according to ADA). Even though this was a one-person (n=1) experiment, I wanted to be as scientific and fair as possible: eating whole, unprocessed foods in both periods; counting and tracking every single gram of carbohydrate (LoseIt! app); wearing CGM 24/7 and downloading the glucose data to document what happened (Dexcom G5 and Clarity); taking insulin before meals (5-15 minutes pr Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia And Diet

Hypoglycemia And Diet

What Is Hypoglycemia? Hypoglycemia, also known as low blood sugar, is a relatively rare condition. The symptoms include shakiness, weakness, faintness, headaches, mental dullness, and confusion. Such symptoms can be caused by any number of other problems, including stress. The only way to diagnose hypoglycemia is through a glucose tolerance test—the same type of test used to diagnose diabetes. Effects of Hypoglycemia Glucose is a type of sugar found in the blood. Eating a meal causes blood glucose levels to rise. Normally, as levels of glucose in the blood increase, the pancreas produces insulin. The insulin causes body cells to absorb the glucose and a gradual drop in the blood sugar level results. In a person with hypoglycemia, the body produces too much insulin in the presence of glucose. This causes a sudden drop in the blood sugar level. The High-Protein Myth Doctors used to recommend eating sugar-restricted, high-protein meals four or more times a day to help control hypoglycemia. But such treatment may actually impair glucose tolerance in patients.1 The main sources of protein for many individuals—animal products—are also high in saturated fat which can contribute to the development of diabetes,2,3 as well as numerous other health problems, from heart disease to breast cancer. Hypoglycemia and Diet The best way to control hypoglycemia is through a diet similar to that used to control diabetes mellitus: a reduction in simple sugars, a large intake of complex carbohydrates, and frequent feedings. Candy, sodas, and even fruit juices (which manufacturers often sweeten with lots of sugar) are all high in sugar and should be avoided. Foods that are high in soluble dietary fiber slow carbohydrate absorption and help to prevent swings in blood sugar levels. For som Continue reading >>

The Fastest & Slowest Carbohydrates For Low Blood Sugars

The Fastest & Slowest Carbohydrates For Low Blood Sugars

Treating a low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) might seem easy: eat something with carbohydrates. But to ensure that you’re getting the best source of carbohydrate that will raise your blood sugar as quickly as possible isn’t as simple as you might’ve thought. For the most part, my relationship with diabetes is a positive one. Checking my blood sugar and taking shots doesn’t evoke any significant negative emotion in my mind (although, don’t get me wrong, I’d love a cure). However, treating a low blood sugar with something I’ve used a hundred-zillion times before, like glucose tabs, tends to make me feel sick to my stomach. Literally, the idea of consuming another juice box to treat another low makes me feel sick to my stomach and it evokes a sense of disgust. “I don’t want to drink another freaking juice box or eat one more freaking glucose tab!” Today, I no longer buy juice boxes for treating lows. And I have dozens and dozens of glucose tabs…but I am sick of that taste. Sick of the connection of how I feel when I’m low with whatever food I’m using to treat it. It’s an emotional connection I’ve made to my diabetes management that is negative. So I find new carbohydrates to treat my low blood sugars on a regular basis. Unfortunately, like I said, different types of carbohydrate take different amounts of time to break down into glucose and get into your bloodstream. I spoke with my friend, Mara Schwartz, who lives with Type 1 diabetes, and is a colleague of mine at TeamWILD (We Inspire Life with Diabetes) as the Director of Special Projects. She is a registered nurse, a diabetes educator and a clinical researcher at the Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes in Aurora, CO. She shared with me the fastest and slowest sources of carbohydrate fo Continue reading >>

The Low Carb Plan

The Low Carb Plan

Eating to control your weight and your blood sugar The Mediterranean-style low carb approach which we recommend in The Blood Sugar Diet, is low in starchy, easily digestible carbs, but packed full of disease-fighting vitamins and flavonoids. It is rich in olive oil, fish, nuts, fruit and vegetables, but also contains lots of lovely things that down the years we have been told not to eat, such as full fat yoghurt and eggs. Although it is derived from the eating habits of people living in Mediterranean countries, you can apply the principles of Med-style eating to a wide range of different cuisines, from Chinese or Indian through to Mexican or Scandanavian. There is extensive evidence for the benefit of the Mediterranean style low carbohydrate diet, including cutting your risk of heart disease and diabetes. It has even been found to reduce risk the risk of breast cancer, compared with those on a low-fat diet. Consuming extra virgin olive oil (the fresh squeezed juice of olives) seems to be particularly beneficial when it comes to cancer, perhaps because it contains compounds such as polyphenols which are known to be anti-inflammatory. “This is potentially a life changing book for people with raised blood sugar levels as well as those with type 2 diabetes” Dr Tim Spector, Professor of Genetics, Kings College, London Kick the Carbs: Low Carb Mediterranean Style Eating – The ‘M Plan’ Cut right down on sugar, sugary treats, drinks and desserts: No more than once or twice a week and preferably less. You can use sugar substitutes like stevia and xylitol, but try to wean yourself off your sweet tooth. Avoid sweet fruits: Berries, apples & pears are fine, but sweet tropical fruits such as mango, pineapple, melon and bananas are full of sugar. Minimise or avoid the starc Continue reading >>

Common Concerns About Low-carb Dieting And Hypoglycemia

Common Concerns About Low-carb Dieting And Hypoglycemia

I magine that you’re a few days into your low-carb diet and when you suddenly you begin to feel “off”. You’re experiencing “brain fog”, light-headedness, weakness, and mood swings. Thoughts race through your mind. I don’t feel right…could I be hypoglycemic? Oh no, my blood sugar is low. Maybe, I should drink some fruit juice… STOP! Hold it right there! There is a better solution, but first, let’s try and figure out what may be the cause. Why am I feeling this way? When I hear someone say that they are hypoglycemic, I often raise an eyebrow. It is possible for some to experience episodes of acute hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, but that term gets tossed around more than a hot potato. In fact, the medical field uses a variety of values in glycemic control as cut-off points in order to define hypo- or hyperglycemia. The cut-off values aren’t clear-cut[1]. If you have a true underlying medical cause, such as diabetes, or some other condition, then this article isn’t intended for you. This is for the rest of the population, most of whom may not even know what a common fasting blood glucose range is. When one begins The Carb Nite® Solution, Carb Backloading™, or any other low-carb diet, there are some foreign physiological changes that can occur, and it is normal to be concerned or aware of these shifts. The “feeling” that you’re experiencing may indeed be a drop in blood sugar. Even if it’s within the normal range, you may experience the symptoms of hypoglycemia. However, there could be other reasons that you aren’t feeling optimal. Improving metabolic flexibility to use fats for fuel, namely the rate at which fat oxidation adjusts to high fat intake, can vary[2-4]. You could also be experiencing a shift in electrolytes[5]. That being s Continue reading >>

Fast-acting Carbohydrate

Fast-acting Carbohydrate

A form of carbohydrate that will raise blood glucose levels relatively quickly when ingested. The term “fast-acting carbohydrate” is generally used in discussions of treating hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. However, as research accumulates on the subject of carbohydrates and how quickly they are absorbed, some diabetes experts say the term has become outdated. What defines hypoglycemia varies from source to source, but it generally refers to a blood glucose level below 70 mg/dl. In many cases, this will produce the typical symptoms of low blood sugar, which include trembling, sweating, heart palpitations, butterflies in the stomach, irritability, hunger, or fatigue. Severe hypoglycemia can cause drowsiness, poor concentration, confusion, and even unconsciousness. Diabetes care experts generally recommend checking one’s blood sugar level whenever possible to confirm hypoglycemia before treating it. To treat hypoglycemia, the standard advice is to consume 10–15 grams of “fast-acting” carbohydrate. Each of the following items provides roughly 10–15 grams of carbohydrate: 5–6 LifeSaver candies 4–6 ounces regular (non-diet) soda 4–6 ounces of orange juice 2 tablespoons of raisins 8 ounces of nonfat or low-fat milk One tube (0.68 ounces) of Cake Mate decorator gel. There are also a number of commercially available glucose tablets and gels. Benefits to using commercial products include the following: They aren’t as tempting to snack on as candy is. They contain no fat, which can slow down digestion, or fructose, which has a smaller and slower effect on blood glucose. The commercial products are standardized, so it’s easy to measure out a dose of 10–15 grams of carbohydrate. If someone is unconscious from low blood sugar, don’t attempt to give him Continue reading >>

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