If I wait to long to eat. I also get very nauseous. My favorite snack when I feel one of these episodes is baby carrots. I also carry hard candy if I'm not near my carrots. I try to keep those close though.
I'm sorry to hear that so many of you have had problems getting a diagnosis and appropriate education! I know several people with this problem, including myself, and none of us have run into any problems with the doctors.
I was diagnosed with hypoglycemia when I was a teenager. I would get the "cold clammies", nausea and weakness, and feel like I was going to pass out. I was told to eat every 3 hours, something with protein and complex carbs. I was also instructed to avoid simple, concentrated sugars.
Whenever I had an "episode" the only thing I could eat was crackers...after a few of those I could eat something with protein. If I drank juice or ate sweets I would throw up.
When I got older and became a nurse I would occasionally check my blood sugar while at work. My normal fasting sugar was around 56....yep, I functioned at that level and I would become symptomatic if I dropped below 36. If I ate a lot of sugar my level would jump over 300 then I would crash ...hard.
The important thing with this diagnosis is to figure out how food affects YOU. What works for me, may make you feel horrible. The only constant I have heard is do not eat concentrated sweets by themselves. In other words, no more donuts and soda for breakfast (used to be a fav). If you eat sweets,, eat them after a meal.
Try keeping a food diary, tracking what you eat and how you feel. Eat normally for a few days then eliminate concentrated sweets, then try increasing your protein and decreasing carbs...Everyone reacts differently so it's important for you to see what makes you feel better. Good luck to all of you. This can be managed by eating well!
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The information below is from Mayo Clinic http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diabetes/...
Reactive hypoglycemia (postprandial hypoglycemia) is low blood sugar that occurs after a meal — usually within four hours after eating. Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) usually occurs while fasting. Signs and symptoms of reactive hypoglycemia may include hunger, weakness, shakiness, sleepiness, sweating, lightheadedness, anxiety and confusion.
It's possible to have symptoms that are similar to reactive hypoglycemia without actually having low blood sugar. True reactive hypoglycemia symptoms that are caused by low blood sugar occurring after eating are uncommon. For the majority of people with postprandial symptoms, the actual cause of the symptoms is not clear but may relate to what food was eaten or variations in the timing of the food moving through the stomach and intestinal tract.
Generally, a medical evaluation is done to determine whether symptoms are caused by low blood sugar — and whether symptoms resolve once blood sugar returns to normal. Further evaluation of reactive hypoglycemia depends on the severity of signs and symptoms.
For the majority of people, reactive hypoglycemia usually doesn't require medical treatment. It may help to pay attention to the timing and composition of your meals: •Eat several small meals and snacks throughout the day, no more than three hours apart during the waking hours. •Eat a well-balanced diet, including lean and nonmeat sources of protein, and high-fiber foods, including whole grains, fruit and vegetables. •Avoid or limit sugary foods, especially on an empty stomach. •Be sure to eat food if you're consuming alcohol and avoid using sugary soft drinks as mixers.
For some, particularly those who have had intestinal surgery (gastric bypass or surgery for the management of ulcer disease) further evaluation by a doctor may be warranted, but dietary changes are still recommended.
It's also important to include physical activity in your daily routine.
Todd B. Nippoldt, M.D.
Edited by: LADYCJM at: 5/4/2015 (22:07)
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Hi, I am new here and been diagnosed with this. She says it is like the opposite of Diabetes. Reading your note was amazing...someone else who gets this! I do wonder though -- My blood sugars are always good and the one glucose test i took (a long while back) was normal. Everything I have read on this does not always jibe with my symptoms...for example feeding me sugar during an attack makes me even sicker. I am not hungry at all and often eat only because I 'know' that i will feel better....and I make sure i eat protein..bread or carbs alone doesn't do anything. Part of my attacks include extreme nausea and if I don't eat before a certain point...for got it I am unable to. Then comes the migraines and a hospital visit. Otherwise I feel all the other things, cold but sweating, shaky, brain not working, doing things 'weird', and within 20 mins of eating protein it is like a magic switch was flicked and I am 100% better. I have assumed that because this does not seem to be sugar related I did not have to change anything about my sugar intake but your note actually implies something different. Did you find a big difference in removing sugar? The other issue I have is that eating salad like stuff, or too many vegetables is like pouring water through me...so it is not always easy to replace one kind of food with another. Losing weight for me in the past has always been easy but I am struggling a lot right now (over 40, hysterectomy, student, lazy...whatever!) to lose 20 pounds before a surgery I need. DOes this also contribute to the weight loss problem? I don't mean to dump all these questions on you but yours is the first bit of information that makes sense and seems to understand what I am dealing with! ANy ideas? Thank you so much! Melanie in Victoria BC
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9/24/14 10:10 A
I feel sorry for you that the doctors didn't believe you.I was afraid of the same thing.My daughter was diagnosed with hypoglycemia and then I went in to be checked.The doctor said mine was probably reactive and sent me for a 2 hr glucose test.I still haven't gotten news of the results yet but I really feel that is my problem.I had to go high carb for my pretest meal and it only took 2 minutes for me to get dizzy after eating it.
Love yourself enough to be your own hero!! **AMANDA**
I know that I have it, even though I have not been diagnosed. I would have fainting spells in school and be taken to the doctor. They could not find out why even though I had a battery of tests. I would ask about my blood sugar and when they tested it by the time I would get to the hospital blood sugar would be back in normal range. So I was told it was all in my head. I even had one school nurse tell me I was faking so that I could get out of school.
One time I was at the doctor for something unrelated and I had an episode. They gave me a glucose tablet and I was fine in a couple minutes. Then they tested me for type 1 Diabetes.
I have found that what works for me is eating carbs. Everyone is different, so that may not work for them. I did try the low carb, no sugar route at the height of the Atkins craze. I could barely function. I could barely move.
Now I eat every couple hours, but I try to eat healthy carbs and protein. I do eat sugar and fruit. This is what works for me.
I had to take my health into my own hands. Doctors and nurses told me, it was in my head, I was faking or there was nothing wrong.
thanks for the info.......I have hypoglycemia. If I eat sugar there are times it really lowers my blood sugar. So I try and stay away from it except for fruit. That I eat 1 a day. I do know if my blood sugar gets real low I walk around like a drunk person.......I hate that. I can eat and 45 minutes later my blood sugar has been 58. So I eat 5 meals a day to keep my blood sugar at an even level.
Thank you for a very interesting post. I've never heard of reactive hypoglycemia.
I'm curious: since carbs are basically complex sugars, do you reduce those also when you're eliminating sugar? And the liver will convert *excess* protein into glycogen... how does that figure into your dietary changes for RH?
It's good to have exposure to these things we've never heard before. Or it is for me! Thanks for the topic
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I wanted to share something about Reactive Hypoglycemia for anyone else searching for answers. I have found many answers and I have my life back.
Reactive Hypoglycemia can be debilitating and others may think it's all in our heads. I even had an endocrinologist tell me I needed to see a psychiatrist. So, I decided to forget that route, I'd do my own research. I have a Masters in Education, I've done plenty of research. It's not in my head and I want my life back.
If you are diagnosed Reactive Hypoglycemic, start to eat a no/low sugar diet. Includes taking out fruit (the only sugar I was allowing myself). You'll experience a great reduction in symptoms. Reactive Hypoglycemia is the opposite of diabetes, it still deals with the pancreas, but we suffer from dropping blood sugars constantly. Eat every 2 to 3 hours is key, but it has to be non-sugar choices. Go on a sugar-detox diet.
Read books by Stephanie Kenrose (Hypoglycemic Diet, ebook), Roberta Ruggiero (Do's and Don't's of Hypoglycemia) and many more. Make sure the book is discussing Reactive Hypoglycemia and not hypoglycemia (which is connected to diabetes). Many reactive hypoglycemics never become diabetic so treating "diabetic symptoms" makes reactive hypoglycemia worse, but we deal with a debilitating condition that the medical community does not always recognize as a condition. It's difficult to find a doctor who does. I haven't found one yet, but I know these symptoms are not all in my head.
If you've had a Glucose Tolerance Test and your blood sugars dip to 50 or below (25 and below is coma, 70+ is normal fasting) at the 3-hour mark, that is our #1 indicator for Reactive Hypoglycemia (your body reacted to the great amount of sugar it was given). If you do a fasting blood test....no sugar anomalies will be seen. That's why a doctor told me it was in my head, because he didn't make the connection to a fasting sugar test and a GTT...introduce sugar of any amount into my system, and my body reacts like it's allergic to it...but it's not widely acknowledged in the medical community. So, I'm going to suffer because a doctor doesn't connect the dots outside the medical scope of experiments and studies done? Not all of medical anomalies have been figured out - the science is constantly evolving.
If you do research, forego typical medical websites that ascribe it to diabetes (most do). Look for personal narratives from folks who have suffered from it and found a way to solve their health issues. When research and studies do not have enough data on a given subject, start looking for personal narratives. Someone out there always shares some part of our story and struggles. It's a matter of seeking out their stories and we can get clues to solve our own problems.
Go no sugar. Stat. Eat Ezekiel 4:9 bread. Eat white corn tortillas. No fruit, but every veggie under the sun. Research by the ladies I mentioned earlier. Get your life back. I did.
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