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Avatar universal

Dehydration low blood sugar

I drink water on a regular basis about 5 or 6 cups a day I'm always dehydrated   If I drink any juice or sports drink I get horrible low blood sugar even if I dilute it with water. The other day I had my blood drawn and the nurse couldn't get any blood  she tried 3 times finally she got some blood but it was coming out slow. I almost passed out and got low blood sugar. I was shivering and ice cold. I feel weak most of the time. Get the shivers and cold feeling a lot. I don't know what to make of this. Any suggestions?  Doctors don't know what it is.
14 Responses
Avatar universal
What kind of MDs have you seen?  Has anyone suggested a nephrologist?   Are you urinating more than you take in?  Keep track of both intake and output, and if there is a large difference between the two, then it's probable that you need to see a nephrologist..  Have you also been seen by an internist (maybe your family doctor for general practice, isn't going to be enough here)?  If not, that would be my first move.  
Avatar universal
I have not seen a nephrologist. I have seen endocrinologists. Internal medicine. Hematologists for my anemia b12 deficiency and folic acid deficiency. Cardiologist infectious disease  I will look into seeing a nephrologist.  Thank you.
4851940 tn?1515698193
Have you been checked for diabetes insipidus?  There are a few forms of this disease and diabetes insipidus is not the same as Type I, Type 2 diabetes or diabetes mellitus.

Ask the doctor if you can get checked out for this and also ask to get imaging tests done (ultrasound or MRI) of your kidneys.  This will help should you get an appointment to see a nephrologist, but he may order different tests to be done.

As a nephrologist specialises in kidney problems, that is a good specialist to see with the symptoms that you have.  I do not know which country you live in.  In the UK you get referred to specialists by the doctor.  You could also suggest this to your own doctor who may be give you more information or actually refer you to one.

Let us know how you get on.
Avatar universal
I have a particular thing that runs in my family, where we tend to have low blood pressure.  We can manage it by not being shy with using salt in our food.  I never heed the high sodium warnings on foods (like soup).  If I under salt my food, I feel weak. Also, I need the salt in my food to properly hydrate myself, as in the salt helps my body to hydrate. I'm also one of those people where nurses have a hard time finding a vein and getting blood out of me.  Not sure if this info helps, sounds like you have a tendency for low blood pressure too?
Avatar universal
Yes I have low blood pressure also. I try to push the salt  I was worried that it might make me more thirsty sometimes it does. Do you get shivers and cold also?  My blood sugar also falls a lot. Doctors don't have an answer I find if my thyroid levels are a bit to high it's a lot worse. I take synthroid and have to keep adjusting my dose up and down.  Thank you for responding. Nice to know someone with the same issue.
Avatar universal
For me, Salt does induce a bit of thirst (just a tad bit, not a lot), but I don't see that as a bad thing.  I drink normal volumes and I urinate normal frequency, too.  I think salt is a very critical part of my diet, and my other family members, too.  I have a sister who refused to add salt to food (because of the high sodium warnings we are constantly faced with) and after running tests the doctor told her she had to add salt.

Yes, the feeling of cold runs in my family too, especially "crashing low feeling and cold" after eating a meal.  I also learned to stabilize my blood sugar by eating LCHF...I think it's the best thing I've ever done in my life.  I have more energy, stabilized through the day, and I don't "crash" after eating anymore.  I remember crashing real low after eating, and feeling terribly cold and shivering a lot after each meal.  That doesn't happen to me anymore after I converted to eating LCHF.  Also, my skin is so much more resilient and soft now. I also used to get really dry skin on hands and feet, had to use tons of creams to moisturize....but not anymore after LCHF.
4851940 tn?1515698193
Can you explain what LCHF stands for, please?

Sounds like I should try some.
Avatar universal
Low Carb High Fat

You might have reactive hypoglycemia.  when you eat carbohydrates your body turns them to sugar, your pancreas releases insulin to lower BG (Blood Sugar) but makes too much insulin and causes your BG to drop too much.  Eat less carbs have less BG swings.  

You say you have hypos after eating, what are your BG numbers or are you just calling them hypos because of your symptoms.
Avatar universal
All of those symptoms you list including the thick blood can be from high BG not just low BG.  especially since drinking fruit juice will significantly raise BG
Avatar universal
Yes I try to eat high protein complex carbs like whole wheat bread  meat eggs yogurt  my sugars have dropped to 50!  Awful feeling. My blood pressure is low too. 90/50 80/45. One time in er while shivering badly it dropped to 70/15. They gave me Iv fluids  and it went up to 100/60.
Avatar universal
Here's the tricky thing with ultra high protein meals...protein is insulinogenic.  When your body receives lots of protein, it promotes the secretion of insulin.  It's odd how this has not become common knowledge.  Everybody points the finger to sugar and carbs as insulinogenic foods, but protein flies under the radar.  If you google "rank list of insulinogenic foods" you will see that protein rich foods are high on the list, next to the carbo and sugary stuff.  You will also note that fatty foods are very low (not very insulinogenic, as one would expect it to be).

So why is this fact important? Well, because when your body shoots a slug of insulin into your blood after you eat lots of protein, it drives your blood sugar low.  People who drink high concentration whey protein shakes (that are low in sugar and carbs) they hit a wall, because the insulinogenic effect of the high protein promotes the injection of insulin, which then dramatically reduces the few grams of glucose you have circulating in your blood, and then you feel weak, cold, shivery, etc.  This is why a properly made protein shake has a bit of glucose in it, to help protect against this problem.

Now, what happens when your blood sugar goes low after you eat ultra high protein? Your body is forced to manufacture glucose from the protein you just ate, and this process is called "gluconeogenesis".  For people who eat high protein and at the same time avoid eating sugary and carby foods, the process of gluconeogenesis cancels the low carb eating results and makes glucose anyway...seems a bit crazy as it defeats your low carb eating efforts. By the way, gluconeogenesis is also an energy intensive process, and this makes your body feel sluggish and fatigued.

So, how do we avoid insulinogenic effect of high protein, and how to not promote gluconeogenesis?  The best diet for this is LCHF.  This means low carb, moderate protein and high fat.  We should be eating between 0.5 to 1 gram protein per pound of lean body mass.  A less active person closer to 0.5 and more active person closer to 1.  In other words, if a person weighs 150 pounds, and if they are an active person, they should eat about 150 grams protein per day.  If they eat a lot more than 150 grams, they risk going into gluconeogenesis.  This is what we mean by eat "moderate levels of protein".

So, eating low carb is a very good thing to do.  This will protect you from obesity, cardiovascular problems, diabetes, inflammation...the list is long of all the metabolic problems high carb eating causes.  Just make sure that the low carb is matched with moderate protein and high fat (with fat from natural sources, like olive oil, avocados, butter, coconut, nuts, etc, and not from fake sources like margarine).

Fat is a VERY important component to the low carb diet.  This protects your blood sugars from cycling and keeps them steady.  It also trains your body into using fat for metabolism, as opposed to only from carb and proteins.  I know lots of people who have been brainwashed that they cannot eat fat, and they end up eating ultra high protein.  But, their blood sugar is a huge problem, going high and low, and they hit the wall during parts of the day where they need to drink tons of coffee to stay awake and they get raging hunger.  In fact, I used to be brainwashed about the fat phobia too.  When I took the leap and tested LCHF way of eating, I was remarkably impressed with the results.  It was truly a revaluation for me.  I wish this info was more available.

Otto, you mentioned eating high protein with complex carbs like whole wheat bread...I caution you on this.  This is highly insulinogenic.  It will drive your blood sugar low, as the carbs in the wheat bread are trapped by the fiber.  First your body will be forced into gluconeogenesis, and then you will feel fatigued.  Then the glucose from the bread eventually gets released into the blood, which again will induce another bolus of glucose into the blood followed by insulin injection again, and your blood sugar will plummet again, making you feel weak.  Try this instead:  each meal eat non starch veg with meat/fish/eggs and fat, and forget the grains.  For example, one meal would be broccoli sautéed in butter with steak.  Another example meal is eggs omelette with bacon, asparagus and mushrooms.  Another example meal is a salad with lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, avocado and olive oil with chicken (brown meat with skin on, to get lots of fat).  Think VEGETABLE   + PROTEIN + FAT for each meal.  Try this for a week and see what results you get. And don't be afraid of using salt. This eating plan was a miracle for me, and now I feel great, with excellent blood pressure, and other on point health markers.


Avatar universal
Wow. I didn't know  I always thought protein complex carbs. I will try this. Thank you very much for the information!!!  And I will push the salt.
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