Is Poor Blood Sugar Regulation Ruining Your Health?

Sugar.

We're all addicted to it. Some (myself included) consider chocolate its own food group. It tastes good, we were raised on it, it's provided in celebrations, and is a source of comfort.  Unfortunately, sugar is likely wrecking your health, upsetting your blood sugar balance, ruining your adrenal glands, increasing your waistline, and causing that mid-afternoon dip in energy.

Remember that carbohydrates break down into sugar, even whole grains. When you eat a higher carbohydrate meal (pasta, rice, bread, cereal, pancakes, dessert...etc) it breaks down into glucose (sugar) and begins to float around your blood stream. In response, your pancreas pumps out a great deal of insulin to help "push" glucose into your cells to be used as energy.

Those who have dysregulation will experience an insulin spike (it over shoots so-to-speak) resulting in a drop in glucose quicker than expected.  If your don't have the appropriate adrenal gland response (via communication with the brain) then you crash and go in search of more sugar or caffeine (or both!)

What can you do?

First, examine what you eat for breakfast and lunch. If you are eating on the fly, skipping meals when your adrenals can't handle it, opting for higher carb foods, pumping yourself full of caffeine then it's time to make some serious adjustments!

Go for protein, healthy fats and vegetables at each meal - some people can't cut out carbs completely while others feel better carb/grain-free. The only way to know is to try. I would at least think about a gluten-free diet to start.

Second, fix your adrenals.  While you can do adrenal supplements (talk with your healthcare provider first of course!), remember that the adrenal glands simply respond to signals from the brain and the brain responds to signals from your body and your life.  Therefore if your life is not doing you any favors (poor sleep, poor diet, high stress, autoimmune, infection, inflammation...etc) then your brain gets stressed out subsequently stressing the adrenal glands.

Third, get the right testing.  Not all adrenal testing is created equal! It's important to know how much free cortisol you have floating around as well as knowing how much cortisol you make in total (metabolized cortisol). They are NOT the same thing!  Consider the Dutch test at www.dutchtest.com In addition, make sure you have had a full blood work-up including a complete thyroid panel with antibodies, iron/ferritin markers, AND your glucose and insulin.

Carrie Jones

an educational website focusing on hormones