What is Hypoglycemia?
Hypoglycemia or low blood sugar is a potentially dangerous condition that often affects diabetics who take medication to increase their insulin levels. As well as medication, eating too little, skipping meals or exercising too much can also lead to hypoglycemia.
The blood sugar or glucose we get from our food is an important source of energy. Carbohydrates from food like bread, potatoes, rice, vegetables and fruit are our main source of this glucose.
The glucose gets absorbed into the bloodstream then travels to the cells. The hormone insulin produced in your pancreas helps the body’s cells to utilize glucose as energy. Excess glucose gets stored in the muscles and liver or changed into fat to be used as energy later.
Insufficient glucose renders the body incapable of performing its essential functions. For hose taking diabetic medication, a short term drop in blood sugar levels can create a number of problems and immediate treatment is necessary.
Symptoms of Hypoglycemia
Low blood sugar comes with a host of potential symptoms. These symptoms which may occur very suddenly include the following:
- Elevated heartbeat
- Blurred vision
- Pale skin
- Mood changes
- Shaking and Sweating
- Tingly skin
- Poor concentration
- Difficulty sleeping
- Seizure and unconsciousness
Causes of Hypoglycemia
There are many causes of hypoglycemia but it is usually related to diabetes treatment. Diabetes inhibits the body’s ability to properly use insulin so sufferers use certain medications to help the body use its supply of glucose.
These include insulin injections and oral medications.
When too much of these medications are used blood sugar can drop dangerously low. Other causes are eating too little and skipping meals or exercising more than normal especially without consuming enough food.
Drinking alcohol while using diabetes medication can also result in a drop in blood sugar.
Causes other than Diabetes
While most cases of low blood sugar are linked to diabetes, other causes include:
- Hepatitis or kidney disease
- Tumors which produce excess insulin
- Adrenal gland disorders
- Poor diet
Diet is Important
Ensuring good health begins with the diet. Cutting out the junk can help you keep your symptoms in check. Refined or processed foods provide you with little in the way of nutrition and can lead to many problems in the long term.
Eating too much junk can affect your metabolism and cause obesity, diabetes, hypoglycemia and even cancer. Try cutting gluten out of your diet because it is known to help the symptoms if hypoglycemia.
You should also eat lots of protein. Carbohydrates can help spike your glucose levels quickly but can also cause them to drop just as fast. Proteins and good quality fat like coconut oil, olive oil and avocado are a much better way to ensure your blood sugar levels remain stable for longer.
Natural Remedies for Hypoglycemia
1. Licorice Root
Licorice root is an excellent natural remedy for low blood sugar and can help keep your blood sugar levels raised and stable throughout the day. As well as helping improve your glucose levels, licorice is also associated with a reduction in stress.
It should however be avoided by people with high blood pressure because it can increase blood pressure levels.
You can make a licorice root tea by cutting your root into small pieces and adding it to boiling water. Let it seep for ten minutes, strain and drink it up twice a day.
2. Dandelion Root
Dandelion root is another excellent option to alleviate hypoglycemic symptoms. It is an excellent source of calcium which is known to have positive effects on the pancreas and the liver.
Instead of throwing your dandelions away, you can make a delicious, healthy herbal tea with dandelion root by following a few easy steps.
- Harvest your roots. This is easier to do after a rainfall when the soil is softer. Try to grab as much of the root as you can and pull it up.
- Clean the roots thoroughly then cut them up into small pieces less than half an inch.
- Roast the roots on a baking tray in the oven for two hours at around 250 degrees.
- Grind the roasted roots even smaller in a coffee grinder or food mixer.
- Put the finished roots in a tea infuser or a cup, cover with boiling water and allow to seep for at least 15 minute.
- Sweeten with honey to taste if you don’t like the slightly bitter flavor.
Ginseng is a popular healing herb that has been used for a very long time indeed. Among its many uses, it is considered to be excellent for regulating blood sugar levels hormones and providing the body with energy.
4. Milk Thistle
Milk thistle is a therapeutic herb which has earned a reputation for liver rejuvenation. By enhancing the liver’s performance, it prevents blood sugar from dropping lower than it should. It also has the natural ability to detoxify and regenerate damaged liver cells.
The fruit and the leaves of the bilberry are regarded to be an excellent natural remedy for symptoms of diabetes including hypoglycemia. It can help to regulate blood sugar level and decrease reaction to glucose after eating food high in sugar.
6. Gentian Root
Gentian root is another well regarded treatment for low blood glucose levels. It can naturally boost sugar levels in your body.
You can make a natural concoction by seeping your gentian root in boiling water and drinking it up several times each day.
7. Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are one of several types of seed that can help to treat hypoglycemia. They are rich in helpful nutrients like magnesium, iron and manganese and can also prevent harmful calcium oxalate from being deposited in the kidney.
Munching on pumpkin seeds during the day can regulate your glucose levels effectively and safely or you can add some powdered pumpkin seed to a glass of warm milk and drink it up several times a day.
8. Sunflower Seeds
Sunflower seeds can help with hypoglycemia because they are such a great source of antioxidant polyphenols. These polyphenols help to eliminate harmful oxidants from the pancreas and the liver.
One of these polyphenols known as chlorogenic acid is especially helpful in treating hypoglycemia because it promotes the production of glycogen within the liver.
Feel free to snack on sunflower seeds throughout the day or add them in powdered form to water and you should see some beneficial effects.
Parsley has just the right chemical properties to help those with hyperglycemia to control their glucose levels. It helps to safely improve the health and function of the liver and the pancreas and has a positive knock on effect on blood sugar.
You can eat just about as much parsley as you want in your meals or steep some of the leaves in very hot water and drink it up each day.
Molasses can also provide you with the blood sugar kick you need with far fewer if the worries that you may get from sugar.
Just add a little of your molasses to your warm milk or water and drink it down twice daily to get your blood sugar under control.