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Feels like a hypoglycemic attack but no diabetes or low blood sugar.

Discussion in 'Gastrointestinal and Urinary' started by maryb, Feb 11, 2013.

  1. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    One thing not discussed here so far, which should be, is low blood pressure. It can mimic low blood sugar in many ways.

    The normal range for glucose (in Australia) is I think 5 to 7. I tested myself once during a hypoglycemic attack (a mild one) and it was 3.6 . You have to test when the symptoms are bad, but not so bad that the only thing you can think of is eating sugar.

    Glucose will quickly correct hypoglycemia, but protein gives sustained benefit. Glucose will wear off very quickly, and may even provoke another hypoglycemic incident.
    Valentijn and Little Bluestem like this.
  2. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Good point. I was wondering if it's our bodies not converting stored nutrients to glucose that's behind us switching to a different type of energy metabolism.

    Our bodies use up available glucose in 20 minutes which I suspect is why I need to eat again after 20 minutes when exerting myself. Ya know, I'm just happy to have found a solution, even temporary, for feeling exhausted and brain fogged when exerting myself. I still have to eat a real meal after about 2 hours but this holds me over till then. Everytime I got to Whole Foods, I eat when I first get there, snack while shopping and grab another meal to eat in the car before heading home.

    This is actually a good article on this ... I see they mention glucose tablets. I don't see it here but on another site they recommended taking 4 at one time. I was only taking 1 at a time so I may try this again. Target has a sour apple that I liked.

    http://diabetes.webmd.com/tc/hypoglycemia-low-blood-sugar-topic-overview
    tc ... x
  3. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Hi alex,

    I can tell the difference between low bp and low blood sugar. Low blood sugar makes me shakey and is always resolved quickly by eating something sweet. Low bp only responds to salt loading. I can actually feel ok with low bp but not low blood glucose.

    I wouldn't say that I crave sweets when my blood glucose is low, I just know that I need something to eat. NOW !
    And I learned the hard way that it has to be something that brings my blood glucose back up quickly. In fact, eating anything other than sweets and getting my glucose up doesn't help at all. I didn't realize it until I had the GTT that I get really whiney too.

    From what I've read my reaction is the same that diabetics get when their blood glucose goes too low but I'm not low in inusulin. I'm high ... When I first realized what was happeing, I couldn't find anything on the web about chronic hypoglycemia but it may be there now. tc ... x
    SickOfSickness likes this.
  4. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    I learned something on holiday once. It was afternoon and i felt dog tired and hungry. Had a glass of water and was trying to get the strength to go to the cafe. My husband walked in and switched on the aircon.
    Within a few minutes the feeling of hunger had gone. I felt stronger as well.
    People had mentioned to me in the past about a confusion of hunger with being thirsty but never that hunger could be helped by getting cooler.
    I overheat at home in easily. Even if the weather is cold and the heating us set low. I am guessing that the heat is causing my BP or POTS to make me somehow feel hungry and weak instead?
  5. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    xchocoholic

    It takes time to digest protein to supply energy ... I could be wrong but I think over an hour. Glucose is about the fastest absorbed sugar there is, I think, so it restores blood sugard fast. The problem is it creates a sugar high, drives up insulin, and this can lead to a new sugar low. You either have to keep consuming glucose (or a mix of carbs) or take other measures. Fructose is a slow release carb (low glycemic index) as it has to be converted by the liver. Protein is also converted by the liver. So what I am saying is that to avert an extreme attack glucose is fine, to prevent recurrence then slow carbs and protein need to be in the diet. One is a temporary fix, the other has long term benefit.

    People who use glucose or sucrose (table sugar) to fix this and need to keep taking it are actually driving the problem, it can make it worse and turn it into type 2 diabetes.

    Low bp is similar to low glucose in impact, but that shakiness does not occur in low bp as you stated. When I get the shakes then I know its glucose, similarly when I start to sweat its glucose. Typically I get neither of these responses any more unless I start eating badly: protein is critical to a long term management strategy. Glucose can stop immediate collapse, protein prevents recurrence.
    xchocoholic and Little Bluestem like this.
  6. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    alex3619

    Hi Alex,

    I think it only affects our overall blood sugar in a bad way if we're not using it up right away. I'm using it in a situation where I've got my heart rate up but can't keep up mentally or physically without sugar, oj, raisins, etc every 20 minutes. Sometimes I eat a nut or two also but not so much lately. I don't think eating nuts really made any difference in my need for additional sugar, etc.

    I've been on the paleo diet for several years now so I eat plenty of meats, good carbs, etc and I eat every 2 - 3 hours. And my body, esp my brain, still can't get enough energy out of foods that I ate earlier.

    I agree that if I am just laying around doing nothing, then I feel the effects of the glucose high and low. It feels completely different to me. It makes me feel sickly like after eating a ton of candy on Halloween nite ...

    I don't know if other PWCS are having this exact problem or not. I'd love to see an endo who knew what to look for.

    tc ... x
  7. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    Hi Alex - don't think low blood pressure is a problem for me, I take it regularly and its okay but have to admit I've never taken it when I start with these symptoms. I don't eat sugar as a rule so a small amount when I get these attacks should be alright, doesn't get me any nearer to why? But just another one of those symptoms we have to live with.
  8. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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    That has been my speculation too.

    Same here. I eat so often and so much.

    I think I don't eat enough protein, tho :(

    Yeah I feel the crashes from too much sugar and that's different.
    xchocoholic likes this.
  9. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Hi Sickofsickness,

    I'm glad to hear that you're figuring this out too. I can't eat more than about a 1/2 - 3/4 a bowl full of anything at one time or else I feel bad. That's with taking digestive enzymes too.

    And for some reason I need to eat about 3 separate meals in the morning and before lunch so I can get going. Nothing I've tried so far takes the place of eating that often in the morning. Maybe using a feed bag when I'm sleeping would help .. :p

    I'm experimenting again with complex carbs (organic brown rice and organic lentils) to see if it helps keep my glucose levels up without needing sugar every 20 minutes when active. I've been on the paleo diet for 4 years so I avoided rice and beans and counted on the carbs in veggies and fruits to keep me going. That didn't work for me .. I had to supplement with sugar or oj every 20 minutes when active.

    Eating proteins and fats didn't work for me either but I don't have a gall bladder and my digestion is compromised from celiac disease (damaged villi and no DPP-IV), low elastace dx via metametrix and probably other missing digestive enzymes.

    I know I can't just eat beans and brown rice (vegan diet) and feel good so I'll be eating meat too. I'll be looking at my cognitive function mainly.

    tc .. x
  10. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    Funny isn't it - I started the week with this hpoglycemic stuff, yesterday I got so busy (mentally) I didn't realise I hadn't eaten - I had got up late though at 10.30am - I had breakfast at 1pm just some toast - I last ate the night before at 6pm - so thats 19hrs without food, just a couple of glassess of water and 2 decaff coffees, but no symptoms, so is it related to physical energy?
  11. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Physical exertion depletes energy / glucose for everyone. The problem is that some people can't store nutrients and / or convert these to glucose ( or maybe it's just a certain type of glucose that the brain needs but hasn't been defined yet or I just don't know about it ) as needed. tc .. x
  12. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    So just sitting is the best way for me to avoid a hypo attack:( brilliant......
    xchocoholic likes this.
  13. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Lol. I hope not. : ) Some people can reverse their blood glucose problems by esting a paleo style
    diet or by eating low carb. It didn't work for me but it could work for you. Tc .. X
  14. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    I'm only joking - I'm not a sitter by nature. I can't do low carb though at all need my brown rice, potatoes and gluten free bread, in fact a day or 2 just eating toast gives my digestion a rest and I usually feel much better, but man cannot live by toast alone:)
    I do have a good diet really plenty of veg, salad, mix of different meats and carbs, no dairy,gluten,sugar etc. but still not well, damn.
    xchocoholic likes this.
  15. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    I figured u were joking. Lol. My diet was paleo / low carb for a few years but my body
    never adjusted to low carb. Dr myhill wrote about this but from what I saw, she thought it should work
    for us too.

    fwiw I just got home from running errands after eating beans and rice right before leaving and it didn't
    help me. I felt exhausted. I just ate 3 ocean spray fruit packs = 36 g of sugar and I feel good
    again. I need simple sugars ... Tc ... X

    Ps I'm not well either but I have a lot of damage. Ataxia, seizures, lung scarring, hyperinsulinemia,
    celiac, hashimotos, kidney stones, lbbb, oi ....
  16. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    Doesn't sound too good sorry to hear that, re the sugar thing I'm just so used to not having it now, seems kind of weird when I do, don't really crave it anymore, just when I get these attacks.
  17. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    I've been using glucose / dextrose tablets lately and can tell a big difference right away in my ability to think. :) I picked up a package of the orange ones and cherry ones from Target. FWIW, I prefer the cherry ... Sometimes one works but usually I need two.

    I learned a few years ago that I needed to eat or drink something to raise my blood glucose when I get up in the morning. I tried a glucose / dextrose tablet today and felt better than I did when using other methods. Of course at some point, I needed to eat real food.

    The whole blood glucose arena is too complex for me to understand at this point but it seems that there are enzymes that we could be missing that should break down our foods into usable glucose. I'm going to experiment with different ones and see what happens. The normal lipase, protease and amylase haven't helped me with this problem. I'll let you know what I find out ... tc .. x

    PS. I found a glucagon kit online but don't know if anyone except diabetics can get this. It's an injection and recommended for emergencies but maybe it's available for daily use. I'm not sure yet ...
  18. nanciswell

    nanciswell

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    For me it from oxalates detoxing .. ..
  19. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    When I was in hospital I had some of these attacks. During one I had both my blood glucose tested and my blood pressure. Both were fine.

    In my case I am now suspecting some kind of vasoconstriction in the brain, resulting in reduced blood to the brain. This starves the cells, and feels like low blood pressure or low glucose, and may be a type of brain fog. It would be related to migraine, but different in scope and intensity and without pain. One of the triggers seems to be food, but I can eat almost anything and not have this reaction - its not consistent. I am still trying to figure this out.
  20. Grigor

    Grigor

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    Would say adrenals ?? Cortisol??

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