Hypoglycemia: A symptom of bigger health problems

I am so thankful to the events and circumstances that brought me to to low carb eating. Looking back, one of my biggest health problems that was a big warning sign of poor glucose control was Hypoglycemia. In hindsight I had been suffering from this malady for years.

Hypoglycemia is typified of having a meal, a sharp blood sugar spike in the body then an even sharper blood sugar crash which leaves you irritable, shaky, headachy and faitgued. It is, for all intents and purposes, pre-Diabetes and thus part of a much bigger health issue. It is your body’s way of telling you your beta cells are burning out and your pancreas is having a hard time shooting out enough insulin to keep up with the carbs and sugar you are flooding it with. It is a warning sign more than just a health malady. If you don’t heed this sign it can progress to full fledged Diabetes. It is your system’s breakdown of the regulation of blood sugar control.

My “lightbulb moment”, realizing I had this condition occured when we had a pizza party on the bus on the way home from skiing the last trip of the season from Collingwood. Two friends and I split a pizza to ourselves. I felt great on the bus for about 10 minutes afterwards but by the time I got home I had the worst headache of my life from the blood sugar crash. I remember coming into the house, clutching my forehead, barely saying hello to my mother, dropping my ski gear on the floor and going up to my bed to sleep for the evening. I was in agony.

Hypoglycemia can be diagnosed with a Glucose Tolerance Test from your doctor, although many doctors, and my doctor at the time didn’t even recognize Hypoglycemia. I basically had to turn the trainwreck of my own health around and am grateful for the wisdom and guidance to do so.

Even now, after years of low carbing, I have to be mindful of eating every few hours because my blood sugar tends to run low. I listened with great interest on the low carb cruise a few months ago to Jackie Eberstein’s story of how she was diagnosed with Hypoglycemia by the late, great Dr. Atkins in his clinic while working with him. Her symptoms and history with the malady is practically identical to mine. She also turned her health around with a low carb approach to eating. It is amazing how many years people can suffer through Hypoglycemia without treatment. Even when they seek out a solution to their condition they are often steered wrong. When seeking a definition from Wilkepedia of Hypoglycemia their treatment was conventional and included drug treatment….

“Hypoglycemia is treated by restoring the blood glucose level to normal by the ingestion or administration of dextrose or carbohydrate foods. In more severe circumstances it is treated by injection or infusion of glucagon. Recurrent hypoglycemia may be prevented by reversing or removing the underlying cause, by increasing the frequency of meals, with medications like diazoxide, octreotide, or glucocorticoids, or by surgical removal of much of the pancreas.”

Frequent meals? Of what? More carbs and sugar no doubt which just exacerbates the condition and makes you Diabetic sooner. The “underlying cause” of the condition is insulin resistance. How about treating the condition naturally by eliminating sugar and insulin producing grains to control blood sugar spikes. What doesn’t cause blood sugar spikes? Fat and low carbohydrate foods. A Low Carb or Paleo diet is perfect for blood sugar control and getting off the blood sugar rollercoaster ride that is one ride you DON’T want to be on!

Those of us in the know in the low carb community realize that by eliminating blood sugar spikes from sugar and grains you can even out your blood sugars throughout the day and avoid the condition and fallout of Hypoglycemia altogether.

Low carb <3,


2 thoughts on “Hypoglycemia: A symptom of bigger health problems

  1. Hey, Laurie!

    I used to have the same problem….and as long as I treated it with even slightly carby foods…it just caused more problems. Once I started treating it by eating high FAT, the problem went away. Immediately.

    Nice blog!

  2. Hey Avalance,

    I was reading the Atkins Diabetes Revolution (Dr Mary Vernon and Jackie Eberstein), and Hypoglycemia is stage three of the four stages to Type 2 Diabetes (the following stage is Pre-Diabetes). So, if you are experiencing Hypoglycemia, you are well down the road to Diabetes. Good Job in catching this and correcting it with a Low Carb Lifestyle!

    Most folks don’t realize how dangerous being Hypoglycemic can be……

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