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confused about hypoglycemia, insulin resistance etc.

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by outdamnspot, Apr 8, 2015.

  1. outdamnspot

    outdamnspot Senior Member

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    I tend towards hypoglycemia naturally, but have found that my symptoms have been mysteriously exacerbated over the past couple of months; there will be day/week-long periods where I am starving, foggy-headed, confused and can almost devour a whole jar of peanut butter without reprieve from the symptoms. If I have coffee (which I have been guilty of consuming more of lately), the 'crash' and subsequent hypoglycemia is especially bad.

    I know it might immediately sound like anxiety (which is what my doctor dismissed it as), but it is very intimately connected to a feeling of hunger/craving sugar.

    I know that there is some basic connection between cortisol/blood sugar -- lately, when I take my time-release melatonin (which should drop cortisol?), the symptoms become worse. And stimulants (even creatine) tend to improve the symptoms. I also make sure I eat fats, proteins, low GI etc., though that doesn't always help.

    What I was wondering if there were any supps I could take to help keep my blood sugar more stable -- and anything I should definitely avoid -- while I figure out some way to get my fatigue more under control ..? It's such a frustrating feeling. Alpha-lipoic acid definitely makes it worse. Potato starch makes it worse. I had been doing a course of Olive Leaf Extract over the past week and my symptoms had also been quite bad .. and I just googled and read that OLE is a hypoglycemic agent, so maybe I need to drop it.

    But I don't really understand the insulin resistant/sensitivity thing. Is Chromium good or bad for hypolycemia?
     
    South likes this.
  2. A.B.

    A.B. Senior Member

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    In my opinion the right thing to do here is not to experiment with supplements but to see an endocrinologist and test the HPA axis. It doesn't sound like this has been done.

    Are you losing weight?

    PS: something you can do right away that will probably help is eating balanced meals every 3 hours, while strictly avoiding any foods with high glycemix index (a table of foods and their glycemic index)
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2015
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  3. outdamnspot

    outdamnspot Senior Member

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    I've mostly given up on doctors -- they either throw psych meds at me, run a basic blood test and tell me nothing's wrong, or dismiss it as anxiety .. so getting a referral to an endocrinologist would probably be impossible, unless someone knows a GP who's decent and affordable in Melbourne, Australia.

    My weight is pretty stable, and as I said in my post, I do eat well, but it doesn't help.
     
  4. A.B.

    A.B. Senior Member

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    Ok, what you can do is buy a home glucose meter and check blood sugar yourself.
     
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  5. outdamnspot

    outdamnspot Senior Member

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    Sorry, I didn't mean to sound like I was dismissing your suggestion -- it is a worthwhile one, and I probably should seek out a decent doctor. I googled and found a list of CFS-friendly GPs in Melbourne, so might try one ..
     
  6. halcyon

    halcyon Senior Member

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    Hypoglycemia is a common symptom of the illness. For reasons that I don't yet understand, something is going wrong with blood sugar regulation. What I've found is that anything that spikes blood sugar will often cause reactive hypoglycemia. The only way to avoid this is to avoid rapid blood sugar increases. I'd lose the coffee, or at least switch to decaf. I believe caffeine will cause a spike in cortisol, which will cause a spike in blood sugar. I'd also avoid meals with large amounts of carbohydrate, and try to eat every 3-4 hours. Even with all this care, it still seems to happen, so just be prepared. I'm not sure that there is anything that you can really take to make the problem go away, it's just a result of autonomic failure, much like the other dysautonomias we experience.
     

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