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Fasting and Blood Sugar

Hi, I have diabetes and I eat bitter melon to keep it down, I have seen and been told about cinnamon, so I tried and my blood sugar went through the roof, I waited for about 5 months and tried it again, but with the same result, so why is that? Also when I fast I still need to eat something small so I do oatmeal, but after everything is done by noon, I need to get something in me or I start to get sick, blood sugar gets too low, what a battle.

Although all the active ingredients in cinnamon have probably not been identified, cinnamon has consistently improved insulin sensitivity, which helps the insulin be more effective in lowering blood sugar levels. I assume that ‘blood sugar went through the roof’ means the blood sugar went up.  Without actual levels, much of what I say is conjecture.

So how could cinnamon make the blood sugar go up instead of down?

1. Rarely, you could be allergic to cinnamon and the stress of the allergic reaction (as stress from anything) could raise your blood sugar levels.

2. The cinnamon may actually be dropping your blood sugar initially which causes a compensatory release of glucose from the liver to bring it up.  Perhaps it could be overshooting and raising the blood sugar level, especially if you add your own carbohydrate to assist in the ‘hypoglycemic’ episode.  The best thing to do to train your body to not have ‘hypoglycemic’ episodes is to eat less carbohydrates and more proteins and fats in order to lessen the glucose swings in the bloodstream.

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Low Carbs and Diabetes

I have a Low-Carb for diabetes question. Dr. Gardner, about 12 years ago during a work physical I was found to have fasting BG of 250. My Dad also had diabetes, and was not doing well with diabetes (and died from it a few years after). My doctor did not think that my diabetes was that bad yet, and started me on meds and the standard ADA diet. I did not lose any weight and felt terrible on the diet. After a couple of months of no improvement and frustration a friend who had Insulin Dependent Diabetes told me about the book “Diabetes Solution” by Dr. Bernstien. I started following that diet and exercise regime religiously and in a month had gotten my BG under control and stopped taking all meds. I keep my carbs around 50 a day, and do eat lots of what I call “salad type vegetables” and have been doing this for about 12 years. A few years ago I tried combining an apple with some protein to see if maybe my BG responded positively. It didn’t my BG shot up to 160 after two hours which I consider totally unacceptable. So for the last 12 years I’ve had one piece of fruit, that apple. I wonder what you think about Low-Carb diets for diabetes control?

Diabetes is not a life sentence.  Your body is capable of healing; my caution is in the case of  Type I, where the insulin producing cells in the pancreas have been damaged and insulin is no longer being produced.

Basically, diabetes type II is severe insulin resistance. This means the cell membrane, which houses the insulin receptors, is unresponsive to insulin and will not let it flow freely into the cell. This is usually caused by years of sugar and too much carbohydrate intake.

The treatment, then, consists of improving insulin resistance. This starts with a low carbohydrate intake, which you have already done. Congratulations on sticking with a 50 gram per day carb diet. Keep it up.

Five other things that improve insulin resistance:

  • chromium,
  • vanadium,
  • biotin,
  • DHEA,
  • testosterone.

You should already be on chromium, and possibly vanadium and biotin. You will need to get levels of DHEA and free testosterone through a health practitioner who is comfortable with using bio-identical hormones to bring those levels up if they are low. I do not consider age-appropriate levels as necessarily the healthy optimum, but I look at levels we had in our 20s as the most appropriate range.

Incidentally, the last time I looked at the ADA diet, they were recommending 150 to 250 grams of carbs per day for their patients. It is no wonder blood sugar levels are so high in those following the ADA diet. That also means the insulin levels are high, and insulin is the most inflammatory substance the body makes. As the insulin goes up, so does the total body inflammation, which makes you feel rotten. Keep up the low carb diet, and listen to your body.

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Diabetes: Critical Information You Should Know

Update:  I just came across an excellent article linking diabetes with thiamine deficiency.  Check out the article here.

(Can anyone get this information to Larry H. Miller?)

A patient recently came into my office for a consultation. She was in her early 50s, overweight, and was struggling with constant tiredness and a sense of being overwhelmed. She had tried multiple diets, with little to no success, and when she succeeded in dropping a couple of pounds, they came right back on. She was sick and tired of being sick and tired. She, like countless other baby boomers, is dealing with a physical condition that is nearly epidemic in proportion. If untreated, it has the potential to lead to full blown Continue reading Diabetes: Critical Information You Should Know