What should you eat if you have hypoglycemia?

I’d like to give you a sneak preview of what is coming in my new book, which will include meal plans and more detailed advice about what to eat if you have hypoglycemia.

As I will be stressing in my book, each person is different and we come from different cultures and ethnic backgrounds, so we will also prefer slightly different foods. But when you know the underlying principles, then you can choose meals that fit with you own tastes and culture.

Let’s start with breakfast. The traditional bacon and eggs, or just eggs on toast, is usually a good choice. Eggs are a great food (and if you’re worried about cholesterol, forget it – read ‘The Great Cholesterol Con’ by Anthony Colpo).

Eggs help to build up the adrenal glands, which are usually weak and exhausted if you have hypoglycemia.

So, 2 eggs (any style – boiled, poached, fried or scrambled) on two pieces of wholegrain toast with butter is a good balanced breakfast. Note I said toast with butter. This is important because butter helps to slow down the absorption of the carbohydrate in the toast, so it will release energy gradually over several hours. You won’t feel hungry or need a snack until lunchtime if you eat a balanced breakfast like this.

Compare this with the so-called ‘healthy’ breakfast recommended by a lot of diet experts – low-fat milk or yoghurt, fruit, fruit juice, cereal. A huge dose of carbohydrates/sugars and not enough fats/oils, so you will feel hungry and hypoglycemia again within a couple of hours.

There’s nothing wrong with cereals for breakfast as long as they don’t contain sugar. I live in New Zealand where we have a cereal called Weet-Bix (similar to Weet-a-bix in the UK – not sure what the American version is). A moderate serving of this cereal with whole milk (not low-fat) and a couple of pieces of wholegrain toast with butter, is also a good breakfast.

If you are from a different part of the world e.g. Asia you can eat your own traditional foods for breakfast. Just follow the same principle – make sure you have enough protein and fats, and a moderate amount of carbohydrate, so you get a steady release of energy over several hours.

Avoid anything low-fat and high in carbohydrate.

Now, there’s the question of what to drink with breakfast. I like to start the day, before breakfast, with a large glass of plain water. With breakfast, I drink a cup of English tea with milk. You can also have a cup of weak coffee with milk. But coffee is a factor in aggravating hypoglycemia, so be careful.

I never drink more than one cup of coffee a day, or more than 3 – 4 cups of tea – and always with food.

OK, so that’s breakfast. This post is already getting long, so I think I’ll break it into three parts and send lunch ideas tomorrow, and then dinner the next day. 🙂

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4 Responses to What should you eat if you have hypoglycemia?

  1. Hi! You’re efforts to spread awareness & support for those dealing with hypoglycemia is inspiring. I wanted to share an excerpt from my blog about hypoglycemia. I think it may help! Wishin you the best of health!

    How to Handle Carbohydrate Cravings with Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar)

    Everything you need to know about hypoglycemia, or ‘low brain sugar,’ including symptoms, treatment and healthy energy-empowering foods containing key vitamins and minerals

    Pump the brakes! Those carb cravings shouldn’t control your life any longer.

    If you often feel faint, woozy, irritable and carbohydrate crazy, there is a chance you have hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar.

    The moment your mind reminds you of your low energy, you frantically seek carbs – bread, crackers, pasta, whatever you can feed your system – and fast.

    But, your mind may actually be your pesky problem. When blood sugar drops too low, the brain begins begging for instant carb gratification.

    Hypoglycemia should be named, “Low Brain Sugar.” Common in those with diabetes, hypoglycemia occurs when the blood sugar level drops too low to give your body energy.

    Symptoms of Hypoglycemia or Low Brain Sugar:

    1. You may have mild hypoglycemia if:
    a. You feel hungry often
    b. You feel nauseous
    c. You feel nervous or uneasy
    d. Your heartbeat speeds up
    e. You start to sweat and your skin feels cold or clammy\

    2. You may have moderate hypoglycemia if:
    a. You feel irritated, afraid or confused
    b. Your vision becomes blurred
    c. You are off balance or having trouble walking

    3. You may have severe hypoglycemia if:
    a. You faint
    b. You experience seizures
    c. Coma & death are the most severe symptoms

    Put in an analogy we can all understand, the brain is like a fuel gauge in the car. If you don’t have enough fuel, you rush to the first gas station you see. You may even pay an additional $0.23 per gallon!

    The brain (or fuel gauge) emits information telling you that you must ingest carbs (fuel) right away. Desperately overeating, you find yourself miserably full, out of shape and still tired.

    If this is the case, you may have insulin resistance – caused by deficiency of certain vitamins and minerals. It’s important to check your vitamin and mineral levels to see where the deficiencies may lay. Then, with the help of supplements and foods, which facilitate absorption of those deficient vitamins and minerals, your brain will adjust accordingly. This will help your ‘fuel gauge’ (brain) to function properly and reduce the pressure to consume those carbs.

    Generally, those lacking essential vitamins and minerals are more likely to develop hypoglycemia. A thorough examination and blood test is needed for conclusive results.

    If mild or moderate hypoglycemia goes untreated, it can turn fatal. But don’t worry; there are many ways to nip low brain sugar in the bud! Here are a few healthy carbohydrates and other foods that contain the energy-boosting ingredients you yearn!

    Top 8 Healthy Carbs:

    1. Whole-wheat pasta
    2. Quinoa
    3. Popcorn (without the extra butter)
    4. Wheat berries
    5. Bulgur
    6. Barley
    7. Acorn Squash
    8. Oatmeal

    Other Recommended Healthy Snacks for those with Hypoglycemia:
    1. Fresh fruit
    a. Figs, grapes, apple slices
    2. Cheese
    a. Brie, cottage, cheddar
    3. Vegetables
    a. Celery, carrots, leafy greens
    b. Dips:
    i. Almond butter
    ii. Guacamole (avocado + lime + garlic)
    iii. Olive oil
    4. Nuts
    a. Almonds
    b. Macadamia
    c. Pasticcios
    5. Tuna/Eggs
    a. High in protein and healthy fat to keep you full!

    About Dr. Kenneth Woliner
    Dr. Kenneth Woliner established his reputation upon therapies that strategically merge natural cures with modern-day pharmaceuticals. The distinguished physician combines his mainstream credentials from University of South Florida College of Medicine, with his degree in nutritional medicine from Cornell University to create a holistic alternative approach.
    At Holistic Family Medicine, Dr. Woliner specializes in the treatment of thyroid conditions, diabetes, yeast infections, weight management, Grave’s Disease, Hashimoto’s Disease, adrenal fatigue and other common and hard-to-treat conditions. For more information about Dr. Woliner or Holistic Family Medicine, visit http://www.HolisticFamilyMed.com, call 561-314-0950, or email patients@holisticfamilymed.com. “Like” Holistic Family Medicine on Facebook at http://facebook.com/aboutHolisticFamilyMedicine, or follow us on Pinterest athttp://pinterest.com/holisticmed/.

  2. Amy B. says:

    I’ve been having trouble with dairy for years. It seems to cause congestion and also makes my joints ache. If I completely stop eating sugar and take your advice on eating balanced meals, will these problems with dairy go away? Or do I need to find substitutes?

    • Chris says:

      Amy,

      In your case I would also recommend you stop eating dairy products. If you are getting clear symptoms from eating dairy, it makes sense to avoid it. You can drink coconut milk or almond milk. I love coconut milk. The only thing when buying coconut milk or almond milk, is to make sure it doesn’t have sugar added, or other additives. I like to make coconut milk by buying 100% coconut cream and blending it with water.

      Chris

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