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High Blood Sugar Ketosis

Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe For People With Diabetes?

Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe For People With Diabetes?

Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe for People with Diabetes? If you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, chances are you’re looking for simple yet effective ways to control your blood sugar. And, if at all possible, without the use of daily shots or medications. As I’ve mentioned in earlier blog posts, exercise is one of the best natural ways to manage blood glucose. But perhaps the most obvious way to keep blood sugar at a safe and consistent level without insulin is to pay special attention to what you eat. And, in the case of diabetes, limiting your carbohydrate intake may be the key. What Is the Keto Diet? At first glance the ketogenic (keto) diet may seem like a crazy idea for type 2 diabetics. After all, many patients are put on diets to help them lose weight. The keto diet is high in fat, but it is very low in carbs, and this combination can help change the way your body stores and uses energy. With this diet your body converts fat instead of sugar into energy, which can improve blood glucose levels while reducing the need for insulin. Ketosis VS Ketoacidosis Ketosis and ketoacidosis are two very different things, which are often confused. But it’s very important you understand the difference. What is ketoacidosis? Ketoacidosis (KA) is a life-threatening condition in which your body doesn’t make enough insulin. This causes you to have dangerously high levels of ketones (substances occurring when the body uses fat stores for energy) and blood sugar. The combination of both makes your blood incredibly acidic, and this can, in turn, change the normal functioning of your internal organs such as your liver and kidneys. Patients suffering from ketoacidosis must get treatment immediately or they could slip into a coma and even die. Ketoacidosis can develop in less than 24 Continue reading >>

How To Easily Track Your Glucose Ketone Index (gki) On Your Ketogenic Diet

How To Easily Track Your Glucose Ketone Index (gki) On Your Ketogenic Diet

Tracking ketone levels is a large part of success on the ketogenic diet. It helps you know how far you are into ketosis and where we might need to make changes. But did you know that there’s an even better way to step it up a notch? The glucose ketone index is a simple calculation that allows you to find out how ketosis works best for you individually. Without it, you could be in full, high-level ketosis yet still not getting the full benefits. In this post, we’ll be looking at how to easily track your glucose ketone index for different aspects of health along with your ketogenic diet. Basics of the Glucose Ketone Index Here’s what you need to know about the glucose ketone index (GKI): Researchers have used the index in studies on the ketogenic diet, fasting, and more. Additionally, it has been used for tracking changes and progress regarding weight loss, athletic performance, management of metabolic diseases like type 2 diabetes, and even cancer treatment. Now that we’ve covered the basics of what the GKI does, let’s talk about how you can use tracking it to your advantage. Tracking Your Glucose Ketone Index What’s so special about the glucose ketone index is that it lets you track both glucose and ketones at the same time, taking into account how they work together. It’s a way to know your optimal state for addressing all sorts of health conditions. Tracking this number benefits you over simply measuring ketone levels. That’s because even if you’re deeply in ketosis, you could still have high blood glucose levels that throw things off and affect your health. Essentially, it gives you a more full picture of your metabolic health. The numbers you can expect to target depend on your intentions for being in ketosis. Is your goal weight loss, better overa Continue reading >>

Protein, Gluconeogenesis, And Blood Sugar

Protein, Gluconeogenesis, And Blood Sugar

Recently (for some conception of recent) we asked the question: If You Eat Excess Protein, Does It Turn Into Excess Glucose? One of the potentially confusing aspects of this question, is the difference between gluconeogenesis (GNG) — the creation of new glucose that didn't exist before, and increases in blood sugar. In response to our post, several people made comments that indicated an implicit assumption that changes in blood sugar can be used as a measurement of GNG, but as we will explain below, this is not the case. However, it brought to our attention an important distinction. There are several reasons people might care about excess GNG. One we have already addressed: It is not the case that GNG requires excess cortisol. In terms of the effect of the glucose itself that results from GNG, there are two distinct concerns: How does excess GNG affect blood sugar levels? Blood sugar levels are important because too much sugar in the blood at a given time can cause damage to cells ⁰. Does producing more glucose via GNG ultimately lead to either using more glucose for fuel, or storing it as fat? So when people worry about protein causing excess GNG, what they are really worrying about is that protein will adversely affect their blood sugar levels, or that they are going to use more glucose for fuel than they intended, or that they will store it as unwanted fat. While it would be interesting to understand the effect of eating excess protein on GNG, it doesn't directly address those underlying questions, because there are many other mechanisms in play. We want to know whether for ketogenic dieters eating excess protein adversely affects blood sugar levels, whether it leads to higher consumption of glucose for fuel, and whether it increases the tendency to store fat. In Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes Cure? This High-fat Diet Could Help Control It

Type 2 Diabetes Cure? This High-fat Diet Could Help Control It

Type 2 diabetes is a life-long condition which causes a person’s blood sugar level to rise too high. It affects 90 per cent of adults with diabetes, and is where the body is unable to produce enough insulin, or its cells do not react to insulin. If the body does not know how to deal with insulin efficiently, then the sugar in the blood does not reach the body’s cells and levels can become too high. However there’s much evidence to support that the condition can be managed by maintaining a healthy weight by following a healthy diet and exercising. Eating a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet - known as the ketogenic diet - has been found by research to naturally control diabetes. According to a study, people who lose five to ten per cent of their body weight can lower their risk of diabetes by 58 per cent. If those with diabetes or pre-diabetes - slightly elevated blood sugar levels - do the same, they can experience a significant improvement in blood sugar levels. However, eating a particular high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet has been found by research to naturally control diabetes. A 2005 study found a third of type 2 diabetes sufferers were able to stop all diabetes medications after following the ketogenic diet for 16 weeks, and another study published in the same year discovered patients could improve insulin sensitivity by 75 per after just two weeks on the diet. Fri, August 19, 2016 Diabetes is a common life-long health condition. There are 3.5 million people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK and an estimated 500,000 who are living undiagnosed with the condition. The ketogenic diet involves eating five per cent carbohydrates, 20 per cent protein and 75 per cent fats per day. Foods high in fat include nuts, cheese, fish, meat and avocado. It was created in 1924 as Continue reading >>

Protein Over-consumption In Ketogenic Diets Explained

Protein Over-consumption In Ketogenic Diets Explained

Protein over-consumption is one of the main issues discussed at the Ketogains Group everyday. People are always reading, hearing and/or misunderstanding that eating protein will cause gluconeogenesis and kick you out of ketosis. Tyler Cartwright splendidly refuted the claim that protein supply activates GNG in this post, I recommend you check it out. So, if protein consumption doesn’t massively increase gluconeogenesis, then two questions remain: Why doesn’t ketogains recommend you eat tons of protein? Why does protein over-consumption lower ketones? Ketogains Protein Recommendation Of these questions, the first is easier to answer. The reason we don’t advocate the consumption of tons of protein is because beyond a certain point -arguably somewhere between .8g and 1.2g per pound of lean mass(lbm)- there’s just no benefit. Protein also carries a couple of minor inconveniences: It tends to be expensive and it can cause indigestion. If there were no other reason not to over-consume protein, this would simply be enough. There is also a minor debate over whether or not protein over-consumption prolongs the adaptation phase (irrelevant if you are already adapted). Also some people argue that it may be sub-optimal for performance, but these are secondary to the previous points: It’s unnecessary to eat more, so there’s no reason to recommend over-consumption. Protein and lower ketones The second gets a bit more complicated, and touches on something that Tyler just hinted at in his article. My soapbox is diabetes, and to a lesser extent, obesity… Diabetes has a lot to tell us about blood sugar control and precisely how and why certain food items impact blood glucose. In type one diabetes, the population of beta cells in the pancreas mostly dies, leaving the alpha c Continue reading >>

How To Control The Dawn Phenomenon

How To Control The Dawn Phenomenon

If you had asked me a year ago how to control the dawn phenomenon in Type 2 diabetes you’d have stumped me. Why? Well because even though I was helping folks online through health forums, I wasn’t coaching anyone “live” because it really makes a huge difference between what you know versus what actually works for the client. Once I started coaching folks live – getting on the phone with them, talking with them through Skype, emailing them and texting them via WhatsApp, looking through and scrutinizing their food journals and daily blood glucose readings week after week, I began to realize that many of them have what is known as the dawn phenomenon i.e. high fasting blood glucose in the mornings with lower blood glucose readings the rest of the day. What is the Dawn Phenomenon? Many folks with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes find that their fasting blood glucose spikes in the morning and are much harder to control than their post-grandial (post meal) blood glucose. And sometimes they find that when they eat the same foods during breakfast, lunch and dinner, they find their post grandial readings after breakfast higher than before. This isn’t limited to just folks with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. It seems that some healthy people also get it but their blood sugar spikes are much less pronounced and stay within the normal range so it doesn’t get picked up by the blood glucose monitor. What Causes the Dawn Phenomenon? According to WebMD, the dawn phenomenon or dawn effect is the result of several natural body changes that happen while you’re asleep. Between 3 am and 8 am, your body starts to ramp up the amounts of certain hormones that work against insulin’s action to drop blood sugar levels. These hormones are the growth hormone, cortisol, glucagon and ad Continue reading >>

Low-carb Lab Testing – Part 1 – Blood Sugar Tests

Low-carb Lab Testing – Part 1 – Blood Sugar Tests

Welcome to part 1 of our series on low-carb lab testing, where we’ll look at common blood sugar test options and how to interpret and track your results. In these posts we’ll dig into the most common lab tests one will encounter on their low-carb journey. Our goal is to educate you on what these tests mean so you can be better informed as you work to optimize your health. In this first post, we look at three tests that can be used to monitor your blood glucose levels. In subsequent posts, we’ll shift focus to insulin, lipids, thyroid and other markers that are important for patients to understand. Heads Up Health was designed to help you centralize and track all of your vital health data in one place, including important lab test results, so you can make informed and empowered decisions about your health. To get started, simply click on the button below to create your account. Or, read on for more information about common tests to help you monitor your blood sugar levels. Blood sugar, insulin and health Chronic, long term pathological elevations in blood glucose or insulin have been linked to type 2 diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer’s disease, kidney problems, deterioration of eyesight, neuropathy, poor prognosis in cancer, connective tissue irregularities, orthopedic injuries and more. Links and associations are not necessarily causal relationships, but the medical literature is robust with research detailing potential mechanisms by which chronically high blood glucose or insulin might be either directly causing or at the very least exacerbating these outcomes. With this in mind, if you’re concerned about your long term health and quality of life, keeping blood glucose and insulin within healthy ranges is one of the most important and effective things you can do. Continue reading >>

Blood Sugar: What Causes High Blood Sugar Levels In The Morning

Blood Sugar: What Causes High Blood Sugar Levels In The Morning

There are two reasons why your blood sugar levels may be high in the morning – the dawn phenomenon and the Somogyi effect. The dawn phenomenon is the end result of a combination of natural body changes that occur during the sleep cycle and can be explained as follows: Your body has little need for insulin between about midnight and about 3:00 a.m. (a time when your body is sleeping most soundly). Any insulin taken in the evening causes blood sugar levels to drop sharply during this time. Then, between 3:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m., your body starts churning out stored glucose (sugar) to prepare for the upcoming day as well as releases hormones that reduce the body's sensitivity to insulin. All of these events happen as your bedtime insulin dose is also wearing off. These events, taken together, cause your body's blood sugar levels to rise in the morning (at "dawn"). A second cause of high blood sugar levels in the morning might be due to the Somogyi effect (named after the doctor who first wrote about it). This condition is also called "rebound hyperglycemia." Although the cascade of events and end result – high blood sugar levels in the morning – is the same as in the dawn phenomenon, the cause is more "man-made" (a result of poor diabetes management) in the Somogyi effect. There are two potential causes. In one scenario, your blood sugar may drop too low in the middle of the night and then your body releases hormones to raise the sugar levels. This could happen if you took too much insulin earlier or if you did not have enough of a bedtime snack. The other scenario is when your dose of long-acting insulin at bedtime is not enough and you wake up with a high morning blood sugar. How is it determined if the dawn phenomenon or Somogyi effect is causing the high blood sug Continue reading >>

Ketogenic Diet And Diabetes-how Does It Help You With Diabetes?

Ketogenic Diet And Diabetes-how Does It Help You With Diabetes?

Ketogenic diet and weight loss What is the Ketogenic Diet? The ketogenic diet was actually developed in 1924, but was actually used as treatment for epilepsy. Most diets for type 2 diabetics are designed for weight loss and usually not by a high fat diet, but then again what diet isn’t created to lose weight, period? But what the ketogenic diet and diabetes will have in common is that because it is a low carb, high fat diet, there shows the potential to change the way your body uses and stores energy which have an end result of decreasing your diabetes symptoms. This particular diet also aids in reducing risk factors for epilepsy, stroke, Alzhemier’s disease, heart disease, and diabetes. With the ketogenic diet, your body enters ketosis, which is a metabolic state, and the body then uses ketone “bodies” for energy in lieu of glucose. These bodies are more of a constant source of energy than of glucose that gets its energy from carbohydrates. Let’s talk about fat here The truth is that too much fat is no good but I’m sure that you’re not surprised to hear that. Most but not all fats are essential for our health and are good for us. There’s more calories in in a gram of fat compared to carbohydrates and proteins, but they are the best of efficient energy available. Promoting consuming foods such as vegetables, fish, healthy fats and oils, and meats is what the keto diet is all about. This particular diet is one that you can support long term. And recent studies have shown that by eating a diet that consists of a high fat, low carb diet as opposed to a high carb, low fat diet resulted in: Reduced insulin resistance and reduced blood sugar levels, which can reverse prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. Greatly reduced blood pressure which in turn also reduces the Continue reading >>

Why Your “normal” Blood Sugar Isn’t Normal (part 2)

Why Your “normal” Blood Sugar Isn’t Normal (part 2)

Hi, I just found this site and would like to participate. I will give my numbers, etc. First, my last A1c was 6.1, the doc said it was Pre-diabetes in January of 2014, OK, I get it that part, but what confuses me is that at home, on my glucometer, all my fastings were “Normal” however, back then, I had not checked after meals, so maybe they were the culprits. Now, I am checking all the time and driving myself crazy. In the morning sometimes fasting is 95 and other times 85, it varies day to day. Usually, after a low carb meal, it drops to the 80’s the first hour and lower the second. On some days, when I am naughty and eat wrong, my b/s sugar is still low, and on other days, I can eat the same thing, and it goes sky high, again, not consistent. Normally, however, since February, my fbs is 90, 1 hour after, 120, 2nd hour, back to 90, but, that changes as well. In February, of 2014, on the 5th, it was horrible. I think I had eaten Lasagne, well, before, my sugars did not change much, but that night, WHAM-O I started at 80 before the meal, I forgot to take it at the one and two hour mark, but did at the 3 hour mark, it was 175, then at four hours, down to 160, then at 5 hours, back to 175. I went to bed, because by that time, it was 2 AM, but when I woke up at 8:00 and took it, it was back to 89!!!! This horrible ordeal has only happened once, but, I have gone up to 178 since, but come down to normal in 2 hours. I don’t know if I was extra stressed that day or what, I am under tons of it, my marriage is not good, my dear dad died 2 years ago and my very best friend died 7 months ago, I live in a strange country, I am from America, but moved to New Zealand last year, and I am soooo unhappy. Anyway, what does confuse me is why the daily differences, even though I may Continue reading >>

Ketogenic Diet And Type 1 Diabetes

Ketogenic Diet And Type 1 Diabetes

What is Type 1 Diabetes? Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. The immune system is a defence that guards the body against bacteria, fungi or parasites. A combination of genetics and an environmental (viral infection, vaccines, low levels of vitamin D, cow’s milk or increased insulin demand) trigger engages the immune system to attack and destroy the beta cells in the pancreas. After these beta cells are destroyed, the body is unable to produce insulin. Type 1 diabetes is the result of the inability of the pancreas to produce insulin. With type 2 diabetes, the pancreas produces insulin. Who Gets Type 1 Diabetes? Type 1 diabetes can affect all age groups. Although the thought has been that type 1 diabetes appears during childhood, current research has found that adults are just as likely to be diagnosed with type 1 diabetes; half of type 1 diabetics are diagnosed after age 30. (1) Yet, the rate of Type 1 diabetes in children, in the US, has increased by almost 60% in 11 years (2) and approximately 1 in 300 children in the US will be affected by type 1 diabetes by 18 years of age. (3) There are too many children who are effected globally. The highest rates are in northern Europe and in individuals of European decent. Men are more commonly affected in early adult life. (2) Data suggests the incidence of T1D has been increasing by 2–5% worldwide. (5) What Happens When Your Body Does Not Make Enough Insulin? Beta cells in the pancreas are destroyed by your own immune system resulting in too little or no insulin (a hormone released by the pancreas) produced. Without insulin, energy (sugar) from food cannot enter the cells. Instead of fueling the cells, this excess sugar circulates in the blood causing high blood sugar levels (also known as hyperglycemia). If there is Continue reading >>

Ketones & Diabetes – How Blood Sugar Levels Matter With Ketosis?

Ketones & Diabetes – How Blood Sugar Levels Matter With Ketosis?

Ketones play a crucial role in your overall well-being and helps your body stay in great shape and health. They tend to be present in sizable quantities during the fat melting process that helps you become slim and lose that weight. They are a product of that process that converts fats into energy. Understanding how this works can play a critical role in your weight management as well as staying fit. This way, you can easily make the right choices when it comes to getting the proper diet necessary for weight loss and building lean muscle. What Are Ketones? Your body is an amazing machine, designed to intuitively prioritize certain energy sources over others. So, its order of energy generation is usually carbs, fats and proteins… in that order. So, when the body needs to expend energy, maybe as a result of your sudden burst in energy, it seeks out a carb source. When it doesn’t find it, it then seeks out fats. If that isn’t available either, it then looks for proteins. Ketones are usually a product of the fat to energy conversion process. And some smart nutritional experts are taking advantage of this by publishing information materials, trainings and course preaching the benefits of ketogenic dieting as well as how you can accelerate the process. The ketogenic diet is essentially a low carb, moderate protein, high fat diet designed to trigger the breakdown of the body’s fat reserves. With this diet, the body is essentially forced to seek out fats as an energy source, breaking them down in the process and triggering weight loss. The ketones produced by this process in the liver are the energy sources. While the results per weight loss is questionable, doctors have used this for years to treat unique cases of difficult epilepsy, particularly in children. Diabetic Continue reading >>

The Ketogenic Diet And Type 1 Diabetes: What I Eat

The Ketogenic Diet And Type 1 Diabetes: What I Eat

I recently began writing about the ketogenic diet and type 1 diabetes in an attempt to optimize my blood sugar in relationship to athletic performance. This podcast episode can provide some additional perspective about how I arrived at the ketogenic diet for type 1 diabetes. It started with a low-fat plant-based diet and I have recently changed my approach (dramatically) to a Ketogenic diet (low-carb, high-fat). The results have been remarkable and I feel like this dietary approach is a worthwhile consideration for anyone who is in a position to optimize their diabetes management–or who just wants better energy with no “crashes” throughout the day. In case my standpoint isn’t obvious, let me clarify, there is no should or shouldn’t implied in my writing about this or any other diet. Some people eat pizza. Some people drink diet soda. Some never consume either–or do but always feel guilty. Still others know the drawbacks and act in moderation and feel great about it. My goal is to inform those who are interested in trying something new or just knowing what else is out there–not to persuade those who are happy with an already satisfactory approach. I wrote an eBook compiling my experiments with the ketogenic diet and type 1 diabetes which you can check out here: In my last blog I focused on the comparative results between the two diets, and this blog will hopefully answer the one major question I got–‘what do you eat on a daily basis?’ Not all low-carb diets are Ketogenic, but the Ketogenic diet is low-carb. In the coming weeks I will be sharing more about how my transition to this diet came together as well as mistakes I made along the way. I will also probably put up a post along the lines of “What is a Ketogenic diet?” although that is lower pri Continue reading >>

Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 Diabetes

Certainly a low carb approach doesn’t work with Type 1’s, right? What about the dangerous risks of hypoglycemia? Actually, this thinking is repeated over and over. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, those using a low carbohydrate high healthy fat (LCHF) approach have much more stable blood sugars, some nearly eliminating hypoglycemic episodes altogether. It really makes perfect sense. Why this reasoning is shunned, defies logic. Think about it…less (fast acting, blood-sugar-spiking) carbs, less insulin, less hypos. Before we go further in this post, I’d like you to read this powerfully compelling account of Dr. Keith Runyan, MD, a Nephrologist, who is a Type 1, and who successfully uses a carb restricted approach to manage his diabetes. Please read his story (link below). There is no way I could do this story justice in fewer words. The entire article is needed to understand its full impact. Afterwards, I would recommend his accompanying video. Nutritional Ketosis vs Diabetic Ketoacidosis Much of the backlash from mainstream beliefs regarding the use of carb restriction with Type 1’s stems from the lack of understanding about the difference between nutritional ketosis and diabetic ketoacidosis. I’m going to quote directly from Diabetes Daily Website. Here is the content of their article entitled “Why DKA and Nutritional Ketosis Are Not The Same”…(read the full article HERE) “There’s a very common misconception and general misunderstanding around ketones. Specifically, the misunderstanding lie in the areas of: ketones that are produced in low-carb diets of generally less than 50g of carbs per day, which is low enough to put a person into a state of “nutritional ketosis.” ketones that are produced when a diabetic is in a state of Continue reading >>

Ketogenic Diets: What Impacts Your Blood Sugar The Most?

Ketogenic Diets: What Impacts Your Blood Sugar The Most?

As you may have read in my articles among hundreds of others on the web, there has been a significant amount of enthusiasm recently for the potential metabolic management of cancer. This ranges anywhere from diet (fasting, ketogenic diet, calorie restriction, etc) to metabolic treatments that lower blood sugar and the hormone insulin, which pulls sugar from the blood and into cells.1 Based on a significant amount of preclinical data revealing the reliance of cancer cells on glucose, along with some other studies on key metabolic factors that promote cancer cell proliferation and repair of damage from chemoradiation,2 I have been a huge fan of increasing the research on potential metabolic management, especially through diet.3 Multiple recent studies have revealed that elevated blood glucose levels have a detrimental effect on survival in patients receiving treatment with surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy for brain tumors.4–6 Small studies have shown that a very low-carbohydrate and high-fat ketogenic diet (KD) may potentially offset the elevation in serum glucose of patients being treated with chemoradiation for high-grade glioma.7 I, along with many of my colleagues, am a huge supporter of the theory (is it still a theory?) regarding blood sugar levels and cancer initiation/progression. My colleague and friend, Dr. Rainer Klement, and I recently wrote a rebuttal to a research article that revealed a detriment in survival with elevated blood glucose levels in patients with gliomas. Neither the authors, nor their results make any comments on a ketogenic diet throughout the manuscript, but then caution against it in the conclusions. A ketogenic diet, even transiently to potentially increase the efficacy of chemoradiation, has been met with apprehension due to Continue reading >>

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