Our overall well being is largely governed by blood sugar levels. Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) may occur if a person is not able to manage the amount of insulin they require based on their food intake, or it may be a sign of prediabetes. Hypoglycemia may also temporarily affect people that do not have any form of diabetes, referred to as non-diabetic hypoglycemia.
Ultimately, any time your body produces more insulin than is required for energy production, it could cause hypoglycemia. Not eating enough or skipping a meal can also cause a drop in blood sugar. Strenuous exercise may also cause low blood sugar if muscles use energy faster than the body can create it. Some medications, such as antibiotics, may cause low blood sugar. Hypoglycemia can occur after a meal if you have consumed a high amount of glucose/carbohydrates and naturally occurring insulin does not regulate your meal properly, creating too much insulin. Low blood sugar can also be the result of adrenal or pituitary gland disorders, because these glands affect the hormones that control glucose production.
Most people can identify when their blood sugar has dropped too low and can quickly make the correlation to what they have or have not eaten. Feeling "hangry"? This term has been attributed to low blood sugar and being overly hungry, because one of the symptoms of low blood sugar is moodiness and agitation. You may also feel shaky, dizzy or confused. Low blood sugar also affects concentration and can cause some eye disturbances. If low blood sugar is not quickly rectified in non-diabetic people, it could lead to headaches and even fainting. Low blood sugar in people with diabetes is much more severe and life-threatening. In both cases, a quick remedy to get the situation under control is to offer the person having a low blood sugar episode something to raise their glucose levels, such as a glass of juice. This is a short-term remedy. Ultimately, finding the underlying cause of low blood sugar is the best option for long-term sugar control.
Under normal circumstances, most people experience a few episodes of low blood sugar in their lifetime. But if you find yourself having symptoms of low blood sugar more often, you may want to consider some preventive measures. The first step would be to discuss your symptoms with your physician to ensure that you are not in a prediabetes situation.
The natural alternatives to managing your blood sugar begin with balancing your food intake. If you are prone to low blood sugar episodes, eat smaller meals throughout the day rather than three bigger meals. Manage the foods you eat to ensure a balance of fats, carbs and proteins, rather than a strictly high-carb meal. When you choose carbohydrates, choose healthy carbs, such as brown rice, legumes, sweet potatoes, etc.
You may also want to consider supplements to help regulate blood sugar levels. Pathway Blood Sugar Support Formula provides powerful herbs, minerals and vitamins to help support healthy blood sugar levels. One of the herbs in this supplement, Gymnema sylvestre, contains substances in its leaves that may increase the amount of insulin in the body and boost the growth of cells in the pancreas, where insulin is made. It also contains the trace mineral chromium, which has traditionally been used to improve the metabolism of glucose, for balanced blood sugar levels. As a result, balanced blood sugar and glucose levels lead to less fatigue and stable energy levels throughout the day. Additionally, chromium has been known to improve the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats from dietary sources.
For more information on supplements, or if you would like to book a consult with a Nutrition Expert please contact Village Green Apothecary.
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