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Diseases > Hypoglycemia
Hypoglycemia means: Low blood sugar levels. In fact the name doesn't cover the condition.
In fact hypoglycemia is a condition which causes the blood sugar levels to fluctuate.
Dangers of fluctuating blood sugar levels
First, high blood sugar levels are very toxic for the human body.
Many cells do not tolerate the high concentration of glucose in the blood. They start to deteriorate.
Damage is done on a molecular level: Proteins react with glucose and in the process the proteins are
destroyed. So, when the blood sugar levels are high, the body tries to decrease the blood sugar levels as quickly as possible.
It does this by producing insulin (the pancreas does this). The insulin levels in the blood increase
rapidly. The insulin is like a key: It opens the door of the cells, so the glucose can enter.
Inside the cells, the glucose is metabolized: It's burned as fuel or it's converted into fat.
In healthy subjects, this process works fine.. When you've had a Cola, your blood sugar level rises
and soon after that it drops again until it reaches the normal levels.
In a hypoglycemic some of these regulation processes don't work (the "drop" part and the "until" part).
Different types of Hypoglycemia
There are several types of hypoglycemia. I'll try to summarize them below:
- Hypoglycemia due to Insulin Resistance
The cells in the body don't react to insulin anymore and this causes the pancreas to produce too much insulin.
Over time, the cells start to react, but because of the excess insulin, the blood sugar plumets below levels to maintain well-being: Hypoglycemia
- Hypoglycemia due to Adrenal Fatigue
When the adrenal glands are exhausted and can't produce enough cortisol, the low cortisol levels can't effectively
antagonize insulin and thus the blood sugar plumets below levels to maintain well-being: Hypoglycmia. Cortisol is
also needed for gluconeogenesis (making glucose out of protein).
- Hypoglycemia due to yeast metabolites
Certain yeasts produce arabinose, which is a yeast metabolite. The arabinose binds to L-lysine, which is important
for effective action of (among others) vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 is essential for gluconeogensis. So, when the blood
sugar levels fall below the base-level, there is not enough vitamin B6 available (functional deficiency) to
start the gluconeogenisis. Result: Blood sugar levels fall below the base levels: Hypoglycemia.
- Hypoglycemia due to acidity or alkalinity of the body tissues
The body uses minerals, primarily different types of organic calciums to buffer the pH
in the blood and the tissues of the body. The blood pH remains at a strict 7.4. A drop
of one or two tenth of the pH can cause death, so the blood pH is balanced strictly
with different means: Minerals that buffer pH, CO2 respiration, the kidneys secreting
excess H+ or OH- and finally the body can dump acids or alkaline excesses into the tissues when all
other meassures are exhausted.
The urine pH, when meassured using the right protocol (check articles on RBTI) reflects
the tissue pH. 6.4 is the optimal pH. Low pH's indicate deficiencies of anionic (alkaline-forming)
calciums (like calciumcarbonate, -hydroxide), while high pH's indicate deficiencies of cationic
calciums (like calciumlactate). When the tissues are too acid, insulin's action is lowered.
When the tissues are too alkaline, insulin's action is exaggerated.
I don't think it needs much explanation how both these abnormal conditions can cause
hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia.
- Any condition that causes insufficent uptake/metabolism of important vitamins and minerals
An example is kryptopyrrolurie, pyroluria or HPU, which causes a deficiency of vitamin B6 and zink.
There are many more examples of conditions like this.
- Possible other causes not covered in this article
Hypoglycemia as a result of gastrointestinal disorders, pancreatic disfunction,
disfunction of the autonomic nervous system, pituitary, liver, cancer of the pancreas, etc.
So, when a hypoglycemic subject drinks a Cola, the blood sugar level rises. As a result, the pancreas
starts to produce large amounts of insulin. However, the cells don't react to the insulin. Somehow the lock
on the glucose-door has been changed and the insulin-key won't fit. After some time (depends on how
bad the insulin resistance is, ie 10 minutes or 4 hours) the cells start to react and the blood sugar levels
start to drop. However, when the normal blood sugar levels are reached, there is still very much insulin
in the blood. The bloodsugar levels keep dropping. A life-threatening condition is created. The brains and vital organs
need a minimum ammount of glucose to function properly. The subject is in danger of falling into a coma.
Emergency Situation: Low blood sugar
The body reacts very swiftly, just before it's too late. It does this by releasing many hormones in the blood.
These hormones signal the liver to deposit the glucose-stores in the blood and to convert proteins into glucose.
During these events, the subject feels very bad, he might be sweating, his mental abilities drop to 20%,
he trembles alot, he might faint. After some time (minutes), the blood sugar levels are normal again.
The subject has inherited some problems from the flush of hormones. These hormones are adrenalin, epinephrine,
glucagon and some more.. We all know what adrenalin can do to us: Flight or Fight syndrome. Epinephrine causes
major stress and irritation. The problem is that these hormones stay in the blood for up to an entire week.
During that week, the subject is not very nice to be with: He gets irritated very easily.
Insulin Resistance: Vicious Cycle
Hypoglycemia can have different causes. Both causes lead to a vicious cycle.
Cause 1: High carbohydrate consumption, which causes intracellular magnesium deficiency
High carbohydrate consumption (doesn't matter if it's starches or sugars) results in high insulin levels
throughout the day. High insulin levels make the intracellular Magnesium decrease and the Calcium increase.
Studies [Barbagallo, Renick 1994
] show that high blood
glucose levels causes the flushing of different minerals, among which magnesium.
Calcium, on the other hand, is not affected. This poses a problem, because calcium is the
antagonist of magnesium. A mineral antagonist "fights" some other mineral, meaning that
high calcium levels will cause lower magensium levels. Check all mineral interrelationships
After eating a high-carbohydrate diet for several years, a magnesium deficiency will be inevitable.
This won't show up on the blood magnesium tests, because most magnesium is stored inside the cells, intracellular.
The reduced intracllular magnesium alters the way the cell opens the door for glucose. The low-Mg and high-Ca causes the insulin-key to not
fit on the door. Besides that, also the intracellular Mg and Ca of the pancreas cells change. This makes
the pancreas overshoot insulin. The next time you eat carbohydrates, the same events occur and it gets worse
Cause 2: Diet extremely low in Magnesium (Mg) and high in Calcium (Ca)
You can understand that the same vicious cycle is started when the diet is high in Ca and low in Mg.
The intracellular Ca and Mg levels also change in such a way that the insulin can't open the door.
Regular treatments focus on eating many carbohydrates, and only the slow-acting ones.
The problem is that we don't know what are slow-acting carbohydrates.. In fact, a mashed potato is far worse
for the bloodsugar than white sugar ! This is because starches are split into disaccharides, which in turn
are split into glucose+glucose. This process (digestion) is very fast and that's why a potato or a sandwich causes
a bigger increase of blood sugars than the same amount of sugars (another imporentent facet is that sucrose is split
into glucose+fructose. Fructose is metabolised much slower and causes smaller increases in blood sugar).
Well, you can try this treatment (in fact, when you're reading this, I think you are right now), but in the end
you will notice that, although it does seem to help, you won't get completely symptom free. If you do want
to try this treatment, you will need the Glycemic Index List
, which shows how fast carbohydrates in different
foods increase the bloodsugar (and thus hypoglycemia symptoms over time). The slower the better.
The problem with this solution is that you will need to snack all day long and that nocturnal hypoglycemia is very difficult to prevent.
Even the slowest-absorbing carbohydrates still cause problems, because the insulin resistance makes your pancreas produce too much
insulin, even for the smallest amounts of slow-acting carbohydrates.
You can understand that the same vicious cycle is started when the diet is high in Ca and low in Mg.
Cause 3: Diet low in minerals in general (like the standard western diet most people eat)
When we eat insufficient minerals, which is the case when we eat a diet full of refined foods like sugar, white flours, pasta's and
high carbohydrate foods in general, our body looses the ability to control acids and bases. Minerals are an important
means to control acid/base balance. The blood remains perfectly stable at pH 7.3. Even a very strong deviation will cause death, so
when we don't have enough minerals to balance acids and bases, the body starts to store acids in its tissues.
The tissues (in particular the spaces in between the cells) then start to get saturated with acids and cells start loosing even more minerals.
The relation with insulin:
Insulin only works when the tissue is at its optimal pH level. When the pH level is too low (too acid)
insulin will work less effective and when the pH level is too high (too alkaline) insulin's action will be exaggarated. Hence:
People who have acid tissues will often have too high bloodsugars and people who have alkaline tissues will often have low bloodsugars.
In both cases, the bloodsugars won't be controlled good enough and hypoglycemia can be the result quite easily. Read more about the
Reams Biological Theory of Ionization
on how to meassure the pH's and other factors that have an impact on health. Once you've got a "picture" (a set of
figures that indicate mineral deficiencies) you can supplement the right minerals to overcome the deficiencies and hence improve the
"terrain" or "soil" in the body, of which the pH is an important factor.
Cause 4: Electrosmog radiation
Electrosmog like the radiation from cellular phone antenna's and wireless phones in the house (don't forget DECT, UMTS, GSM, etc)
has a devastating effect on the human body. In The Body Electric
how high frequency radiation (in particular the longtitudinal part of it) affects the human body regulatory systems. Most important
perhaps is that it changes the way how the calcium channels in the body act. They either let in too much calcium in or out of the cell or
they block the calcium influx/outflux. The pancreas is largely controlled by calcium: When calcium flows into the pancreas it will
let flow insulin into the blood. It doesn't take a genius to realize how the bloodsugars of a person who lives in an appartment
with a wireless phone (a DECT wireless phone sends 24 hours per day, even when you're not calling) turn quite unstable.
Two solutions: Get rid of the electrosmog producing devices or antenna's. To reduce the effects you could use a BioProtect Card,
which you can get from www.bioprotect.de.vu
. I and some other people who've tried it have
positive effects from this simple protection card.
The New treatment consists of the following regimen:
- Stop eating all carbohydrates, except the ones in low-carbohydrate vegetables. Max of 30grams carbohydrates every day.
- Don't eat too many foods high in calcium: Cheese, yogurt, spinach, broccoli
- Take a Magnesium-glycinate supplement which is the only form of Magnesium that can increase intracellular Magnesium effectively
Within days you will start to feel a lot better..
Over time this will break the vicious cycle. According to Dr. Wolgang Lutz
, it takes half a year on the low-carb
diet to heal the insulin resistance. It's very important to understand that it's not wise to restart the old
eating habits afterwards, because then the vicious cycle will restart soon. So, after you're healed watch out for carbohydrates.
Please also read my book reviews, in which I show my findings. I have reviewed several books covering hypoglycemia.
Hypoglycemia due to adrenal fatigue
The adrenals are very important in that they produce many important hormones. One of the most important
is cortisol, which is needed for regulating stress and glucose and fat metabolism. The adrenals can get
exhausted after long periods of stress or after steroid treatments, like prednison. The adrenals then
don't produce enough cortisol and aldosterone. Signs of adrenal fatigue are:
Treating Adrenal Fatigue
- Check potassium status (tends to be very high)
- Check sodium status (tends to be very low)
- Check testosterone status (tends to be high)
- Check blood pressure (tends to be low)
- Check erythrocytes (tends to be low)
The most important thing to start with is adopting a low-carb diet like explained above. Besides that
it's important to sleep enough. Sleeping promotes the adrenals. This is often a vicious cycle: Adrenal
fatigue causes insomnia, and insomnia aggrevates the adrenal fatigue.
Supplements that can be used to boost the adrenals are licorice, cordyceps sinensis and adrenal gland extracts.
I did some further investigations on how Cordyceps sinensis acts on the adrenal cells and I found that:
Radioimmunoassay of corticosterone
indicated that the amount of corticosterone produced by adrenal cells is increased in a positively dose-dependent manner by CS, reaching a maximun at 25 g/ml. This stimulating effect was seen 1 h after CS treatment and was maintained for up to 24 h
Also, I checked how licorice acts on aldosterone (which regulates sodium/potassium balance):
The excess of endogenous cortisol
produced combines with the renal mineral corticoid receptor, which promotes an aldosterone-like action.
So, it seems like it doesn't directly affect aldosterone production/inhibition, but because of the higher cortisol levels in the blood (due to lowered enzyme activity that converts cortisol into cortisone), the kidneys react by doing something that's identical to what aldosterone does..
Treating yeast overgrowth
The third type of hypoglycemia is caused by arabinose, a yeast metabolite. The goal would be to get
rid of the yeasts. This can be done (again) by a low carb or a specific carbohydrate diet. This will starve
the yeasts and get rid of the metabolites, and thus, overtime of the hypoglycemia.