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Self diagnosing noob - Am I doing this right?

Discussion in 'Reactive Hypoglycemia' started by DodgyD, Oct 26, 2017.

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Should I continue eating all the snacks and cola or not?

  1. Sugar it up baby!

    50.0%
  2. Egad!! Think of your teeth!!

    50.0%
  1. DodgyD

    DodgyD Reactive hypoglycemia · Member

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    Last week while hanging out with a new mate, I began to crash. Hard. I didn't pass out, but I really wanted to. My friend suggested my blood sugar was too low and encouraged me to eat as soon as dinner arrived. I made my way home with haste after dinner and crashed out on the bed soon there after.

    That night was a particularly bad episode, but for most of my life my energy levels swing relatively severely up and down. Curious after my friends comments, I looked up hypoglycemia and found to my surprise, that I have -and have had for a long time- almost all the listed symptoms.

    In response to this surprise, my cravings for snacks and cola came under a new light, and the curious but little thought about fact that cola has for many years seemed far more effective than the several cups of coffee I drink per day, suddenly seemed to make a sort of sense. I have started guzzling down a bit of cola regularly throughout the day and enjoying the sense of relief that always accompanies it.

    Subjectively, I suppose it's something like 15-20% of days that I feel in really good energy, and the result is that I can really enjoy life and give much more of myself to the world around me. I'm over 30 now and have learned to manage expectations of myself depending on what state I am in, and savor those quality days as much as I can. Encouraged by the notion of increasing that percentage, I ordered a blood glucose test kit to see what I could glean from it.

    It arrived today.

    Today was a good day. I teach college in the mornings and kindergarten in the afternoons, and despite my general state of sleep deprivation I was able to enjoy good energy and interaction with all my students. Getting home I parked up my bike and headed upstairs, ripped it all open and, after a brief moment, figured out what to do and let the stick absorb a drop of blood.

    3.8mmol/L. From what I gather that is only a little below the normal minimum, but today was a good day. I'm very curious to see what it reads when I'm feeling fatigued, moody, irritable, anxious or any of the other symptoms I have recently learned are associated with hypoglycemia.

    It was dinner time, so I scoffed a bowl of rice and meat and guzzled more cola and waited out the hour.
    5.9mmol/L. That seems more normal right? And sure enough although I feel a slight weariness from the day, I do feel well, alert and happy.

    I wonder what sort of levels I would see on a bad day? Without a doubt far more extensive testing is required. My long winded question is finally here.

    Previously I generally avoided snacks and soft drinks (despite constant cravings) because apparently snacks and sugary stuff is unhealthy. Should I return to my normal snack and soft drink free diet as I begin testing my blood levels, or just continue as is?

    There seems to be a rather large amount of content to consume on the issue of hypoglycemia/diabetes and it is somewhat overwhelming. Any advice at all will be most welcome and appreciated.
     
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  2. NoCrbs4Me

    NoCrbs4Me I reversed my Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Welcome to the forum. I'm not an expert (nor do I have reactive hypoglycemia), but from what I know you need to test at 2, 3 , and maybe 4 hours after eating carbs. You won't get hypoglycemic levels at 1 hour.

    I think you already know what the answer is regarding sugar consumption. It's very unhealthy for anyone.

    You may find that cutting out sugar and reducing carb intake improves your overall energy level.

    I'm sure some others will come along soon and provide you better advice.
     
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  3. Guzzler

    Guzzler Type 2 · Master

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    Make an appointment to see your GP. We cannot diagnose you. While you are waiting for your appt. test lots, before your first bite of food and two hours after your first bite. Make a note of the readings alongside the meal you have eaten and take all this info to your GP. Good luck.
     
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  4. DodgyD

    DodgyD Reactive hypoglycemia · Member

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    Unfortunately I live in the kind of underdeveloped country that has near useless medical care. I'd love to see a GP but that's not an option. :(

    edit: I understand that I cannot be diagnosed over the internet like this. I just have to do what I can, and of course, I am 100% responsible for myself and my own decisions. :)
     
  5. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Legend

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    I agree with @NoCrbs4Me that if you think you have hypoglycemia you need to keep testing after food for 4 hours and record the results next to the food you ate, plus any other notes about how you feel etc. You also need to test whenever you feel those weird symptoms. However, a visit to the doctor wouldn't come amiss.
     
  6. Grateful

    Grateful Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to be a little shirty here, but I have lived all over the world and while some of those countries had primitive health-care systems, I have yet to encounter a country without doctors.

    What do you mean, exactly?

    (We are here to help you, but it should start with a proper consultation with a medical professional.)
     
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  7. delmcp

    delmcp Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I am not or I believe any of the previous posters HCP's so we can not give you any diagnosis.
     
  8. DodgyD

    DodgyD Reactive hypoglycemia · Member

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    Not shirty at all. I can understand the sentiment. There are hospitals and doctors, and there will be skilled practitioners too, somewhere. The problem lies with their accessibility. Overcoming the language barrier is the first step, the second is in determining what isn't an outright scam, what isn't fake, and what doctor actually has any half decent education on the matter. The sector here is completely rife with scams and ignorance. I've talked to fully trained doctors here in the past that prescribe antibiotics for viral infections, electro shock treated my ankle when it got badly twisted, had me pay for treatment from some big machine that seemed to do nothing for some other infection I had. (I looked up the model number online later, it was some debunked useless machine for cancer patients), and don't even get me started on the abysmal level of knowledge when it comes to animal care. That

    Now it's fair to say that the country is improving and developing quickly and things ARE improving. However hospitals are FOR PROFIT. and it shows. They will happily perform unnecessary operations, prescribe useless medication and (perhaps more uncommonly but still a legitimate concern) go out of their way to harm you if you fail to comply with any common bribes.

    I learned many years ago that for as much as possible, I'm generally better of self-diagnosing when it is not so serious as to demand my return to the UK.

    I shant say where I live because that would only serve to encourage prejudice and I'd rather not contribute to that. It is all said entirely just to emphasize why although yes, there are doctors here, I do not have much faith or hope left in them.

    There are some extortionate private hospitals in big cities a few hours away that probably have reasonable levels of care, however the price of these places provides a different sort of inaccessibility.
     
  9. DodgyD

    DodgyD Reactive hypoglycemia · Member

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    What are HCP's?
     
  10. Grateful

    Grateful Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I have experienced bad treatment (in a small, middle-income country I will not name) when I had a botched elbow operation. That required two follow-up ops, in two other countries, to fix. Fortunately my employer paid for it all.

    However, and this is the scary bit, I have also had quite a few terrible experiences in highly developed industrialized countries. There is not necessarily a correlation between a country's level of development, and its medical system. Cuba for instance has, by all accounts, an excellent medical system under the circumstances.

    My experience is that in numerous developing countries, many doctors were actually trained somewhere in the West and then came back to contribute their knowledge and expertise to their home country. The problem, usually, is the system they end up working in (and the lack of resources) rather than the doctors. So it can be harder to find optimal care, but by no means impossible.

    If you are worried enough about it, fly home and get at least the initial treatment on the NHS. (Yeah, I know, that's easy for me to say!)

    Good luck.
     
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  11. DodgyD

    DodgyD Reactive hypoglycemia · Member

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    Interesting.. So are you suggesting I record multiple readings after my meals for up to 4 hours, or record the blood glucose level 4 hours after I finish eating?

    Forgive my ignorance. :)
     
  12. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Legend

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    Health Care Professionals
     
  13. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Legend

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    Testing half hourly after meals, or at the very least every hour, for 4 hours in total.
     
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  14. DodgyD

    DodgyD Reactive hypoglycemia · Member

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    Yea, this is exactly it. It takes a lot of time for knowledge from well trained people to filter down through the mix of guesswork, nonsense or even outright wickedness that pervades in some places. It is not to suggest that mistakes don't happen in seemingly developed countries, it's just that, in those places the general average bar is higher than what I can put together for myself using the internet. Where I am now... I can provide myself with better care most of the time with a bit of reading online followed by a scavenger hunt through all the local pharmacies.

    At present I do not really consider my trouble chronic. I would just like to begin keeping track of things properly so that I can start to identify relationships between what I eat and my blood glucose levels. Next time I return to the UK I'll visit a GP and seek his counsel, though that might not be for a long while yet.
     
  15. DodgyD

    DodgyD Reactive hypoglycemia · Member

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    Ah I see, thank you.
     
  16. DodgyD

    DodgyD Reactive hypoglycemia · Member

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    ah ok great! I got it, thanks! =)
     
  17. Grateful

    Grateful Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I respectfully disagree. But it's your life....
     
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  18. Lamont D

    Lamont D Reactive hypoglycemia · Master

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    Hi, I have Hypoglycaemia.
    And I understand the issues you are encountering and I have had to battle ignorance and unqualified doctors and other health professionals that didn't have a clue about the symptoms of hypoglycaemia especially anxiety.

    If you want to self test, you need to fast the night before, take a pre test fasting reading, then drink 175gms of glucose.
    Then take readings every thirty minutes for over the next three to four hours, maybe extend that if you do not go hypo below 3.5 mmols.
    However, if you do go hypo, I would say below 3mmols, I would take something to alleviate the hypo. If you do go hypo, the symptoms will become exacerbated.

    Have someone look after you, don't do this on your own!

    Ok, next.
    Use your glucometer as a tool to help you find out which foods are giving you the symptoms and fluctuating blood glucose levels.

    If you do go hypo, it's about what you eat and the usual suspects are carbs and sugars. Limiting them will improve your health and energy. This will not be instant, it will take a few weeks to get the benefit of a new dietary lifestyle.

    Before you do anything, please read the forum, there is some great knowledge on how to get good control.

    Since my last glucose test, I haven't had a hypo. It is all about diet and finding the right balance for your body.

    Best wishes and welcome to our forum.
     
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  19. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Legend

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    Do you mean 75g? Or is it different for RH? For us T2s it is 75g.
     
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  20. Lamont D

    Lamont D Reactive hypoglycemia · Master

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    Yes you are right, it's my kindle!
     
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