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What is a normal blood sugar level - Kris Kresser and Richard Bernstein agree

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Here are two links to articles that Kris Kresser has written about blood sugar and why the American Diabetes Association may not be telling the whole story:


My own take on this is that it would be much safer to stay as far away from the abyss (high blood sugar levels) as possible, especially if it is possible to do this with diet alone.
My plan is to get my A1c level down to 5.6, which is considered normal, by the end of the year. But my plan for 2014 is to get it down in the 4's. Whether this is possible I have no idea but I see no reason not to try.
So far, the lower my A1c levels are the better I feel and the better my memory functions, the better my vision is and the better my muscles function. Who knows what else improves that I'm not even aware of.
I may also take Chris' advice and test my post-prandial blood glucose from time to time.

One highly respected expert on diabetes who also argues that a normal A1 c level is in the 4's or low 5's is Dr. Richard Bernstein, author of this very helpful book on managing diabetes who is himself a type 1 diabetic and very successful in managing his disease.


Here is a short video-link that relates to the subject of A1c levels:

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    1546 days ago
  • SKATER787
    Exotec, you've got it all wrong with these organizations. It's first do no harm to their income, industry connections, status, status quo, reputation and social standing. Then after all those, it's public health.
    1546 days ago

    Comment edited on: 11/26/2013 6:59:15 PM
    @ JSTETSER ~ "postprandial" simply means after eating.

    I love Kresser's blogs too! He brings out some great info. My only real interaction with Dr Perlmutter is via one of our other members on our "Thinking of" board. I don't know Dr Seyfried - I'll look him up.

    I also like the Mercola and Kruse sites. I do have some issues with certain aspects of those blogs, but overall I find them reliable and informative in content. Some will quibble about commercialism, or what appear to be a bit "extreme" measures... but I don't have to swallow everything in toto - I can still glean out very good data from both of them.

    I feel so fortunate in being able to "catch myself" before I got so far as diabetes. I know absolutely I was heading there, at nearly 400 pounds when I began this lifestyle. My A1C at last check (11/8) was 4.7. My husband's (he is T2D) is only 5.4; that's all diet. He only takes insulin if his BG indicates he needs it - it's rare now. No orals at all. I have a friend who *thinks* she's controlling her diabetes, and she's struggling just to achieve an A1C of 7, which she says her PCP has targeted. That sounds to me like the upper limit of what he thinks is acceptable - not a real "target." I'm afraid to ask what it's been!

    I take the ADA recommendations right along with all the other "expert" information (AMA, et al). They're still stuck in the old science. I don't disagree with some of their information, but I do challenge their advocacies in light of the newer research. I think it's completely unconscionable to continue to cling to things which either don't improve or actually impair the health of those they're dispensing those guidelines to. What happened to "first do no harm"? Every doctor of every ilk in this country takes that oath. Doesn't it mean anything any more? I'm disgusted. Ignorance or stubbornness is no excuse. If you can't BE a medical professional, quit the profession and do something you can and will stand behind. Yes, I know from my own career it's a job to do so. But just because it's difficult (in time, scheduling, or mental challenge) doesn't mean it can be blown off or ignored while you blithely go on about your business in old accustomed ways. And it *is* business, it's no longer health when it's approached that way.

    I agree with all that diet is a major contributor to health. How could it not be? This is the basic fuel of life. It's ridiculous (IMHO) that some will denigrate that. Meds are simply poisons which affect abnormalities before they affect the host. Most times. Food is a positive thing. I love this sudden glut of information and evolution on foods and nutrition, too! As you say - it's a joy to see it coming to light. I'm sorrowful for those who find it threatening, and who defensively shield themselves with the old standards... they could help themselves and their families so much! But it's an individual process. You can't enlighten those who choose to live in the twilight zone.

    But thanks to you Birgit - and to all of those willing to stand up and take the shots from the status quo. We'll see the benefit in health. Maybe those fearful ones will have the courage to step out and look at things a bit more clearly if they see us improving our lot.
    We can hope!
    1549 days ago
    My husband's endocrinologist wants his A1c to be about 7. It depends on how long you have been diabetic, I gather, something about glucose levels being too low affecting brain function after his strokes. It's the horror of diabetes. It requires such fine tuning all the time.
    1549 days ago
    What is a post-prandial blood glucose?
    I do not know that term.Please send me a private message so that I will find it.
    1549 days ago
  • ERIN1957
    I love what you stated in answer above.
    My blood sugar levels are lower, and even some thought that this could have been an issue. My other hormones; some are good some are not so good. I TRULY believe they maybe connected in issue, but as well some may not be. Just because one is not in trouble doesn't mean another can or can not be. Let me explain....
    Blood sugars and thyroid in myself are excellent. So why would my other ones(more than 11) be so messed up. I so disagree with the belief, if one is off they all are off. I am a living standing breathing example they are not....well at least in myself. And I am not an alien or UFO passenger. LOL
    Hormone health is so indebt, that I have to leave it to the experts, because I cannot even begin to lay it all out on what my doctors do. Let me toss a few out here;
    S,GH,hGH,CCK2. It is so complex and for anyone specialist to tackle any of this is nuts. They too have to follow other experts as well. We are only part of the chain and links joining here, for help and for our own witness to our own beliefs and who we trust.

    I love these two articles Chris did!

    My disagreement with Chris is; I do believe we have more control over many brain issues and we can turn around when caught early, things like Alzheimer's, Auto-immune diseases, even brain damage, whether it be tumor/cancer or injury. Whether the damage done was from an internal issue or an external issue.
    I do believe we can cure diseases with food therapy and even prescription medications together. But not everyone. Yes even Alzheimer's.

    People do have to try and know to be proactive in their approach. I know Chris doesn't want people to believe they all will be healed. No one knows, but God. (my words) Where Perlmutter believes in healing and preventing, where I believe Chris maybe more of a realist. Just my opinion. But I as well believe many can be healed and at the least show great improvement. Brain issues.
    My previous issue has to do with, his comments about Dr. Perlmutter and Kresser's answer to him. Which he carried through to the last article. Chris is standing on his facts, where others stand on their beliefs. Oh yes to believe in theory and others science can be a leap of faith :)

    Dr. Thomas Seyfried, is the one I believe we should all be studying from. He is unbelievable and I believe there are similar versions of his work through people like Dr. Perlmutter.
    I as well believe not everyone can or will heal. But I truly believe in these methods. Now just to do it.

    I as well believe Kresser and Perlmutter have more in agreement than disagreement. I believe Chris is a shining star and he is amazing.
    But I do have to stand with the neurology experts on brain/hormones issue. Kresser is so good for 90% of issues in health. But I think he will come to stand with these two experts, eventually as he too progresses.

    I love how our science and medicine is evolving. Like what we thought for years D was a vitamin we needed, when in reality it is a hormone. We need to pay strict attention to. We surely have the means to test this hormone level and base so much health on it as well.

    As we all progress in our health we will see things that we never saw before and of course the experts(Chris included)have to feed us, only what we are ready to see, hear, believe and do.

    I struggle with the strictness of Dr. Seyfried and hopefully through people like Kresser and Perlmutter I can make that journey.

    Extreme measures for extreme results.

    The joy we receive from educating ourselves, for ourselves is health and healing.

    Bravo Birgit for doing such a wonderful job on bringing this here for an open discussion!
    1549 days ago
  • SKATER787
    Thanks to Lindiemae for the comment on Sam Graci. I ordered 4 more of his books. emoticon
    1549 days ago
    I always wondered about those tests and I agree that drinking those awful sugar drinks makes it useless to say that you are a diabetic. It did say that if you are dehydrated then it will give you a false test and I do know that I always seem to be dehydrated even though I drink lots of water.
    1549 days ago
    your question about other hormones is a valid one. It would be expensive to test all the other hormones. I have been hypothyroid for a long time, but not autoimmune hypothyroidism and have been able to manage it with diet. Low-carb has helped improve my thyroid levels to almost normal level. I will have another panel run in about a month. Some hormone levels change very quickly so are hard to test for regularly. From the reading I have done the key players are insulin, leptin and thyroid hormones, but a lot depends on the individual. One could also argue that those levels that are the furthest away form normal need to be paid attention to the most.

    1549 days ago
    There are another 11 hormones that interact with blood sugars and when your blood sugars are out of control so are you other 11 hormones - that according to Sam Graci in his book The Power Of Foods. How are you other hormones, are they level, or out of whack too?
    1549 days ago
    Interesting, and makes a lot of sense. You don't suddenly become diabetic, it's a process.
    1549 days ago
    Good plan
    1549 days ago
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