Why Is It Important To Recognize A Low Blood Sugar Level
Low blood sugar levels can happen with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Low levels are more likely to happen if you use insulin. Hypoglycemia can cause you to have falls, accidents, and injuries. A blood sugar level that gets too low can lead to seizures, coma, and death. Learn to recognize the symptoms early so you can get treatment quickly.
What To Do When Your Blood Sugar Levels Drop Too Low
People who use insulin and other diabetes medications are at risk for hypoglycemia. Keep this action plan handy so you’re prepared.
If you take insulin or diabetes medication, you may be at risk of developing hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. Without quick attention, hypoglycemia can lead to serious complications, so its important to know what to do if it happens to you or someone close to you.
In very severe cases, hypoglycemia can lead to seizures or loss of consciousness, says a clinical assistant professor of medicine, endocrinology, gerontology, and metabolism at Stanford Health Care, and chief of the Stanford Endocrine Clinic.
It’s possible to have hypoglycemia but have no symptoms, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases . On the other hand, symptoms can also come on rapidly. While symptoms vary from person to person, if you develop mild to moderate low blood sugar you may:
- Feel shaky or jittery
- Have a headache or be lightheaded
- Turn pale
- Be irritable or combative
- Have blurred vision or see double
Some people feel tingling or numbness in their extremities too, says Rodolfo Galindo, MD, an assistant professor of medicine in the division of endocrinology, metabolism, and lipids at the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, and chair of the inpatient diabetes taskforce.
The 17 Best Foods To Lower Your Blood Sugar
For people with prediabetes, diabetes, or other conditions that affect blood sugar, diet is a major part of maintaining healthy blood sugar levels.
Although factors like body weight, activity, stress, and genetics also play a role in blood sugar maintenance, following a healthy diet is critical for blood sugar control .
While some foods, including items high in added sugar and refined carbs, can contribute to blood sugar fluctuations, others can optimize blood sugar control while promoting overall health (
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Can Hypo Unawareness Be Dangerous
Reduced hypo awareness can potentially be dangerous. If you suffer hypoglycemia you should be careful to test before putting either yourself or others in any potential danger.
Examples when hypoglycemia and unawareness of it could be particularly dangerous include driving, operating dangerous machinery at work and even day to day tasks such as cooking or even crossing the road.
What To Eat When You Wake Up
You should eat a small meal as soon as possible after waking. A good breakfast should consist of protein, such as scrambled eggs, plus a complex carbohydrate. Try these:
- hard boiled eggs and a slice of whole-grain bread with cinnamon
- a small serving of steel-cut oatmeal, like this protein-packed oatmeal with blueberries, sunflower seeds, and agave
- plain Greek yogurt with berries, honey, and oatmeal
In addition, be mindful of your consumption of juices. Stick to 100% juice varieties that do not have added sweeteners, and limit your intake to 4 to 6 ounces. Dilute the juice with water or choose a big glass of water with lemon instead.
Steel-cut oatmeal is lower on the glycemic index than other types of oatmeal, plus it contains lots of soluble fiber. Soluble fiber helps slow down carbohydrate absorption, which helps keep your blood sugar stable. Make sure to choose a type with no added sugar or corn syrup.
Also, caffeine may affect blood sugar in some people. Decaffeinated coffee or herbal tea may be your best bet for a hot breakfast drink. Discuss caffeine intake with your doctor to determine if its an important factor for you.
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How Can I Prevent Low Blood Sugar In The Morning
If you have diabetes, make sure you regularly check your glucose levels, especially before bed. If your blood sugar regularly dips while you sleep, consider using a continuous glucose monitoring device, which alerts you when your blood sugar goes too low or too high. Try to follow these guidelines for healthy glucose levels:
- before breakfast: 70130 mg/dL
- before lunch, dinner, or a snack: 70130 mg/dL
- two hours after meals: under 180 mg/dL
- bedtime: 90150 mg/dL
If you dont have diabetes but experience regular hypoglycemia, you may also want to periodically check your glucose levels. Try to keep your glucose level from dropping below 100 mg/dL throughout the day and before bed.
Whether or not you have diabetes, follow these tips to avoid waking up with low blood sugar:
- Eat balanced meals with healthy carbohydrates, proteins, and fats regularly throughout the day.
- Have a bedtime snack.
- If you drink alcohol, avoid excessive intake and have a snack with it.
- Avoid exercising too much at night.
For a bedtime snack, try these suggestions:
- 1 apple with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter
- 1 ounce of cheese and a small handful of whole-grain crackers
- one 8-ounce glass of milk
- 1/2 avocado spread on a piece of whole-grain toast
- handful of berries with a small handful of nuts and seeds
These Foods Can Help You Maintain Optimum Glucose Levels In The Blood When Eaten On A Regular Basis It Is Important To Not Go Without Eating For Too Many Straight Hours During A Single Day
When you need to raise your blood sugar, try to eat simple carbohydrates and sugars that digest fast and can provide you some relief. In such cases, quickly drink a cup of orange juice or soda. You can try any fruit juice for that matter. Eat a few candies or one tablespoon of maple syrup or honey. You can eat a banana or an orange a few raisins or prunes. When your blood sugar is extremely low, you can eat any sugary food to raise it quickly to avoid complications. Jam, jellies and peanut butter with crackers are good options. Diabetic patients must keep some nuts or snacks with them always.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Hypoglycemia
Symptoms of hypoglycemia can start quickly, with people experiencing them in different ways. The signs of hypoglycemia are unpleasant. But they provide good warnings that you should take action before blood sugar drops more. The signs include:
- Shaking or trembling.
- Tingling or numbness in the face or mouth.
During a severe hypoglycemic event, a person may:
- Be unable to eat or drink.
- Have a seizure or convulsions .
- Lose consciousness.
- Slip into a coma or die .
Nighttime Low Blood Sugar
While low blood sugar can happen at any time during the day, some people may experience low blood sugar while they sleep. Reasons this may happen include:
- Having an active day.
- Being physically active close to bedtime.
- Taking too much insulin.
- Drinking alcohol at night.
Eating regular meals and not skipping them can help you avoid nighttime low blood sugar. Eating when you drink alcohol can also help. If you think youre at risk for low blood sugar overnight, have a snack before bed.
You may wake up when you have low blood sugar, but you shouldnt rely on that. A continuous glucose monitor can alert you with an alarm if your blood sugar gets low while youre sleeping.
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Treating Low Blood Glucose If You Take Medicines That Slow Down Digestion
Some diabetes medicines slow down the digestion of carbohydrates to keep blood glucose levels from rising too high after you eat. If you develop low blood glucose while taking these medicines, you will need to take glucose tablets or glucose gel right away. Eating or drinking other sources of carbohydrates wont raise your blood glucose level quickly enough.
How To Treat Someone Who’s Having A Seizure Or Fit
Follow these steps if someone has a seizure or fit caused by a low blood sugar level:
Tell your diabetes care team if you ever have a severe hypo that caused you to have a seizure or fit.
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How To Help Others Help You
Knowing the signs of low blood sugar, having an action plan, and being prepared with your glucose meter and glucose tablets are vital, but sometimes you might need to rely on other people to help when youre blood sugar drops too low. Take these additional steps so youre prepared and they are, too:
Teach your loved ones. If youre unable to help yourself, friends, family, or colleagues may need to treat you with an injection of glucagon, a hormone that tells your liver to release stored glucose, the American Diabetes Association says. For this reason, its a good idea to teach those close to you what to do. If they dont know how to give you the injection or if glucagon isnt available, they must call 911 and get you the help you need, Evans says. Low blood sugar thats sustained for a prolonged time can lead to irreversible brain damage, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Wear an ID bracelet. Evan suggests that everyone with diabetes should get a tattoo or wear a medical ID bracelet. The bracelet should say diabetes and whether youre on insulin or take other medications, the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston recommends.
Talk to your doctor about your low blood sugar risk. If you have frequent bouts of hypoglycemia, be sure to talk with your doctor. The solution may be as simple as changing how much or the kind of diabetes medicine you take. However, never make any changes to your medication regimen without your doctors approval.
How Is Hypoglycemia Diagnosed
The only way to know if you have hypoglycemia is to check your blood sugar with a blood glucose meter. Its a small machine that measures blood sugar. Most of these devices use a tiny prick of the finger to take a small amount of blood.
People with hypoglycemia unawareness may need a continuous glucose monitor. These wearable devices measure glucose every few minutes, day and night. An alarm sounds if blood sugar drops too low.
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Foods That Lower Blood Sugar Instantly Diabetic Health Guide
When your body doesnt produce enough insulin or it cannot use insulin correctly it leads to the accumulation of glucose in the blood. Eat foods that lower blood sugar instantly. High blood sugar levels can be controlled with regular exercise, lifestyle modifications, and proper diet. How to lower blood sugar? What to eat when you have diabetes?
The answers to these questions lie right here. The glycemic index measures the effects of specific foods on blood sugar levels. People looking for diabetic control should add foods that have low GI scores in their diet.
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Best Fruit For Diabetes Type 2
Prediabetes is a condition with higher-than-normal blood sugar levels, but levels that are lower than in type 2 diabetes.. As the National Institute for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases explains, it results from a disruption in how your body regulates glucose in your blood.
The food that you eat also plays a great role in managing your health. There are some foods that you should take in plenty and there are some that you should avoid at all costs. Today we are going to talk about 17 foods that you should avoid if you are diabetic and you have high levels of cholesterol.
People with diabetes are often advised to eat a good selection of whole grain food. However, people are often confused as to what counts as whole grain. Much of the produce which many of us have grown up with consists of refined wheat products lacking very much of the nutrition within better whole grain equivalents.
Myth: A high-protein diet is best. Fact: Studies have shown that eating too much protein, especially animal protein, may actually cause insulin resistance, a key factor in diabetes. A healthy diet includes protein, carbohydrates, and fats. Our bodies need all three to function properly. The key is a balanced diet.
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What Are The Complications Of Low Blood Glucose
Mild-to-moderate low blood glucose can be easily treated. But severely low blood glucose can cause serious complications, including passing out, coma, or death.
Repeated episodes of low blood glucose can lead to
- high blood glucose levels, if worry or fear of low blood glucose keeps you from taking the medicines you need to manage your diabetes8
- hypoglycemia unawareness, a condition in which you dont notice any symptoms of low blood glucose until your blood glucose level has dropped very low
What Causes Low Blood Glucose In People With Diabetes
Low blood glucose levels can be a side effect of insulin or some other medicines that help your pancreas release insulin into your blood. Taking these can lower your blood glucose level.
Two types of diabetes pills can cause low blood glucose
- sulfonylureas, usually taken once or twice per day, which increase insulin over several hours
- meglitinides, taken before meals to promote a short-term increase in insulin
The following may also lower your blood glucose level
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Fruits For Diabetes: Glycemic Index List Of Healthy Fruits
Smoothies, especially those with a lot of fruit, can have too much sugar for diabetics. But a good high-quality, low-sugar vegan protein powder can be an excellent meal replacement when shaken with unsweetened almond or coconut milk says Anziani. We like Vega One All-In-One Nutritional Shake Blend .
Fruits Berries such as fresh raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, and cranberries are your best choices, eaten 1/2 cup per serve. Followed by stones fruits such as peaches and plums , grapefruit and cherries. We stick to using berries in our meal plans.
All in all, if you have diabetes or other blood sugar concerns, consider following a diet that is high in vegetables and protein, reduce high glycemic index foods, and eat a variety of low-GI foods. When it comes to fruit, consider portion sizing and how much fruit you take in at one meal or snack. Sources: Barclay, Alan. Alan Barclay.
Watermelon in the list of good fruits for diabetics can surprise many. But if you have a look at its nutritional composition then you would know why it comes in this list. Its natural sugar is certainly good for you and provides instant energy. It also contains carotenoids in high amounts that can considerably control blood sugar level in the body.
Treating Low Blood Sugar
You are at risk of having a low blood sugar reaction if you:
- Skip or delay a meal or snack
- Take too much insulin or eat too few carbohydrates
- Drink alcohol, especially without eating carbohydrates
Check your blood sugar if you have any of these symptoms:
- Weakness and/or fatigue
If your blood sugar is less than 70 milligrams per deciliter :
- Eat 15 to 30 grams of carbohydrate
- Wait 15 minutes and then recheck your blood sugar
- If your blood sugar is still less than 100 mg/dl, take another 15 grams of carbohydrate and retest your blood sugar in another 15 minutes. Repeat if necessary.
Important: If you have frequent low blood sugars speak to your doctor. You may need changes in your medication and/or meal plan.
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Does Exercise Help Reactive Hypoglycemia
Exercise is always a good thing, so a broad answer to that question is yes, it can help. However, it’s important to remember that if you frequently experience hypoglycemia, you may need to adjust your diet slightly depending on your exercise regime. For some people, strenuous or sustained physical activity can cause blood glucose levels to drop.
The best way to manage this is to eat a small snack containing carbohydrates and protein before exercising. Keep the snack small, and remember to stay hydrated with plenty of water throughout your physical activity. Examples of pre-exercises snacks include:
- Greek yogurt and berries.
- A small amount of mixed dried fruits and nuts.
- An apple and some peanut butter.
Low Blood Sugar Level Causes
Reduced blood sugar level levels can bring about a lowered threat of cardiovascular disease, loss of sight from diabetic person retinopathy, as well as other problems related to diabetes. Belows what you need to understand:
Reducing blood sugar level degrees aids handle the signs and symptoms of type 2 type two diabetes
Reducing blood glucose degrees might prevent problems of kind 2 diabetic issues
Reducing blood glucose levels can bring about a decreased danger of cardiovascular disease
Reducing blood sugar degrees may reduce the demand for drugs For those who require medicine to decrease their blood sugar, this may mean they will certainly call for less insulin and/or oral drugs.
Decreasing blood sugar levels can lower the danger of establishing kind 2 type two diabetes
Lowering blood sugar levels can assist stop diabetic person issues, such as vision loss and kidney disease
Lowering blood sugar degrees may result in a lowered likelihood of depression. This is especially true for women
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