BEARing the Highs and Lows of Diabetes!

Trying to keeping your blood glucose in your target range can feel like you’re on a never ending roller coaster.

Managing your blood glucose level is the single most important thing you can do to make sure you feel your best and prevent long-term complications.

Glucose is a major source of energy for most cells in the body. Carbohydrates (carbs) which are found in rice, cereal, potatoes, bread, pasta and fruit quickly turn into glucose which in turn raises your blood glucose level.

Certain cells in your body have doors or receptors and insulin is needed to unlock those doors to allow the cells to use the glucose to make energy.

When the pancreas no longer produces insulin to unlock the receptors, glucose can not enter the cells, therefore glucose levels rise in the blood. This is known as Type 1 Diabetes.

When you go to bed, your blood glucose should be 110, but when you wake up is has skyrocketed to 150. This happens because during the day, the carbohydrates we eat are digested into glucose and absorbed into the blood stream. Some of the glucose goes to the liver where it is stored for later use. The liver is your glucose warehouse!

Your liver should release enough glucose to replace what is being used, but if there’s not enough insulin, the liver starts to release too much glucose resulting in high blood glucose.

Symptoms of high blood glucose can include:

Feeling sick to your stomach
Excessive thirst
Feeling tired
Blurred vision
Frequent urinating

Being sick or under a lot of stress can also affect your blood glucose levels and can cause them to elevate.

 

Low blood glucose also known as hypoglycemia is caused by low levels of glucose in the body. It can be cause by taking too much insulin, exercising more than usual, delaying meals, missing a meal or drinking alcoholic beverages. In some instances, medications you take for other health problems can also cause blood glucose to drop.

 

Symptoms of Low Blood Glucose

Confusion

Irritable Hungry

Tired

Feeling weak and shaky

Sweating

Headaches

If you have any of these symptoms, check your blood glucose. If your level is too low try one of the following:

Glucose Tablets
½ cup of fruit juice
½ cup of non-diet soda
1 cup of milk
A few pieces of hard candy
1 teaspoon of honey

Check your blood glucose after 15 minutes to make sure your level is 70 or above. Once your blood glucose has become stable and if you won’t be eating a meal within an hour, have a protein snack.