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TOPIC: About Hypoglycemia

About Hypoglycemia 12 years 7 months ago #1

  • Canary75
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Hi all,

I have been suffering hypoglycemia for many years. here is the question I have. I can go weeks and weeks, up to several months and not have a hypo episode. And then one day I have problems with it all day long or several times in a week. Can someone explain to me what could be causing this. Is their anyway to gurantee that this will stop happening?

Thanks!
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Re:About Hypoglycemia 12 years 7 months ago #2

  • Maff
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Hi Canary,

The process of blood sugar control is quite complex which means various things can affect your body's ability to maintain things in the right range.

The main organs involved in blood sugar control are the liver and the adrenal glands. With this in mind it becomes obvious that if the liver is functioning poorly due to having to deal with a large amount of toxins (e.g. from gut dysbiosis and a leaky gut) or it is unable to function correctly due to nutritional deficiencies....this will impact its ability to control the amount of glucose in the blood as well. Equally, if the adrenal glands aren't functioning efficiently they will not be producing adrenal hormones (such as adrenaline, cortisol, DHEA) in the correct quantities and ratios to keep blood sugar stable.

Obviously the workload of your liver and the amount of stress you have in your life (and ability to cope with it) are not static and change over time. It may be that your blood sugar problems only occur when you are particularly stressed or are placing a lot of demands on your liver.

There also other factors that might be involved. Personally I have a number of things affect my blood sugar control and lead to more frequent bouts of hypoglycemia. I suffer from seasonal affective disorder (S.A.D) meaning my moods tend to be affected by the time of year and amount of sunlight I'm exposed to. I have found that on bright summer days I become hyperactive and this then leads to hypoglycemia. I also have hayfever and this also affects my blood sugar control. Neither of these things are surprising as they both have a stimulant effect (through the action of serotonin and histamine respectively) and stimulants tend to throw blood sugar levels off. In the same way, stimulants such as coffee and fizzy drinks (caffeine) can cause or exacerbate hypoglycemia.

Hopefully some of this will ring a bell with you and you will be able to work out what exactly is causing you to develop hypoglycemia periodically.

Controlling hypoglycemia basically means making sure your liver and adrenal function is up to scratch, reducing stress, avoiding stimulants of any kind and generally cutting out high sugar and refined carbohydrates from your diet. Eating small low carb meals frequently throughout the day is a good tactic to maintain blood sugar balance.

There are also a number of herbs and nutritional supplements that have been proven to promote insulin sensitivity and blood sugar balance including magnesium, specific B vitamins, and chromium.

Have a look at our hypoglycemia page for more info:

http://www.ei-resource.org/illness-information/related-conditions/hypoglycemia-&-insulin-resistance/
If you are going through hell, keep going - Winston Churchill
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Re:About Hypoglycemia 11 years 3 months ago #3

Hi, I've had hypoglycemia symptoms for at least the last 10 years.
I recently went to my doctor as the sypmtoms are really getting to be a problem for me.
He confirmed that I do have hypoglycemia and told me to eat every 3 hours and carry sweets or chocolate to eat should I miss a 3 hour snack time.

I'm really confused; as on looking at the Hypoglycemia details on this (and other websites), eating sugary snacks is said to be a bad idea and makes symptoms worse. Can anyone explain in laymans terms why this is and why my doctor would be suggesting that I do so if I've not been able to eat a proper meal?

Also, (as far as I'm aware) I don't have any of the underlying health issues that apparently cause hypoglycemia.
Is it possible for an otherwise healthy person to have Hypoglycemia?

Look forward to your reply. Thanks alot.
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Re:About Hypoglycemia 11 years 3 months ago #4

  • Maff
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Hi HorseyGirl!

Welcome to the forums :)

Was your diagnosis confirmed with a glucose challenge test or a simple one off blood test? The glucose challenege where you drink a sugar solution and then have your blood sugar measured by finger prick test every 30-60 minutes is the only accurate way to see how your body handles sugar and diagnose hypoglycaemia.

Assuming you definitely have hypoglycaemia the first thing to understand is that the average doctor has virtually no training in nutrition so any advice in that area should be left to a nutrition professional.

Basically the advice to eat regularly is pretty sound but WHAT you eat is also important. You should eat low glycaemic index(GI)/glycaemic load(GL) foods to make sure your blood sugar remains stable. Search for these (American spelling would be \"glycemic\") and you should easily find tables of foods with their GI and GL values. A basic diet for hypoglycaemia would include plenty of meat, fish, dairy products, vegetables, nuts and seeds, and moderate amounts of whole grains and low GI fruits.

Eating sugary snacks as your doctor suggested should really be only recommended to diabetic patients who have taken too much insulin and are experiencing severe hypoglycaemia as a result.

I would not advise you to follow this advice as it just creates a rollercoaster of blood sugar levels going up and down and will most likely worsen your hypoglycaemia symptoms.

There are many reasons why you might be suffering from hypoglycaemia from stress to your own metabolic individuality. I assume you have had tests done to rule out major underlying causes of the condition?

Hope this helps and take care,

Maff
If you are going through hell, keep going - Winston Churchill
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Re:About Hypoglycemia 11 years 2 months ago #5

  • becky1980
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Wow, I am so pleased to have found this website!

I too was diagnosed with hypoglycemia by a consultant after having the usual 5 hour blood glucose test. Recently it seems to have become worse so I visited my GP to see if anything could be done to help. Despite my previous diagnosis he basically suggested that it was all in my head and that I was being melodramatic!
I obviously know that my symptoms are very real and to read the info and comments on this site today has made me feel alot better.
I am an otherwise healthy person who exercises and who is of a healthy weight. I have just started teacher training and need to really be at my best to keep up with the demands of the course. Im worried that if I cant get a handle on my hypoglycemia this will jeopardise my progress.
Can anyone suggest a good diet or supplements to try, or a good book to read? I know that low GI/GL diets are good and I do try to follow these but sometimes it's difficult when you are really busy.
Im determined to not let this beat me but I really need some help with it.

Thanks!:silly:
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Re:About Hypoglycemia 11 years 2 months ago #6

  • konnor
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Hi Becky,

A low sugar/low fast acting/refined carb diet is best for hypogylcemia, eating regularly enough so that you don't have a dip, which is usually 2-3 hours.

Good grains would be quinao, millet, buckwheat and brown rice. If you are otherwise in good health with no other symptoms you might be okay with glutanous grains such as spelt, kahmut, oatbran and rye.

Most proteins should be fine and should form the cornerstone of your diet. Beware of pre-packed processed meats or those that are breaded or frozen as they may contain hidden ingredients that you won't agree with, however small the content may be. Also be aware of too much tinned fish and farmed fish in general as it can contribute to elevated mercury levels. Fresh, wild and organic should be slightly better.

Good fats include pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, hemps seeds, most nuts (cashew, almond, brazil, macademia, pine, hazelnut, walnut), olives, oils (olive, sunflower, avocado, coconut).

You'll want to cut out all the sweet stuff, such as...

chocolate, sweets, coffee, black tea, pastries, biscuits, cookies, crisps, white bread/pasta, alcohol, flour etc

Also watch out for fruits in the early stages. No no's include bananas, grapes, raisens etc. You'll probably be okay with lemons and limes, avocado's and green apples.

You might also want to be cautious of certain dairy products. The milk sugar (lactose) could swing your blood sugar and in general isn't very healthy. Look for dairy free substitutes if you really need milk in your diet.

Also be a little cautious of cheese. Whilst a good blood sugar balancer, it can be allergenic if made with cows milk and contain some other nasties. Goats and sheeps cheese is slightly better and might be worth trying.

Also there are some other odd things to be aware of which you will need to guage personally, such as certain root vegetables including baked potatoes, beets, parnips etc. They are starchy and can all swing blood sugar.

Most of the above assumes you just have hypoglycemia. If you feel you may have stressed adrenals, food intolerance, candida, leaky gut etc you might need to restrict things a little further.

Good luck!
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