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How do you control hypoglycemia with diet?

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Quick Answer

Reducing simple sugars and eating complex carbohydrates can help control hypoglycemia, according to The Physicians Committee. Shrinking meal size and increasing the frequency of meals can also keep blood sugar levels stable. Foods high in soluble fiber help to prevent spikes in blood sugar.

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Symptoms of hypoglycemia occur rapidly, reports the American Diabetes Association. They include shaking, anxiety, chills, sweating, confusion, delirium, rapid heartbeat, dizziness, blurred vision and fatigue, among others. A quick snack of simple carbohydrates, usually in the 15 to 20 gram range, of sugar, raisins, honey, juice or hard candy is the fastest treatment. If symptoms do not pass after 20 minutes, eat another snack of comparable size.

Hypoglycemia is very common among diabetics, says the American Diabetes Association. It may occur when blood sugar levels fall below 70 milligrams per deciliter. If patients do not experience symptoms and are unaware of their condition, they have hypoglycemia unawareness, which may also prevent them from waking up at night during an episode. However, rapidly falling blood sugar levels can also cause hypoglycemia.

A high-protein low-sugar diet was once recommended to treat hypoglycemia and prevent episodes, explains The Physicians Committee. However, this diet may impair glucose tolerance. If it is accompanied with a high fat intake, patients are put at greater risk of diabetes and other chronic diseases.

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