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Does Fasting Help Blood Sugar

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My Fasting Day – Does Fasting Help with Diabetes?

Adults need at least seven hours of sleep a night for optimal health, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society. But most fall short, and that can influence eating habits and metabolism.

Insufficient sleep seems to prompt evening eating, McHill says. And its those calories that seem to account for the weight gain and metabolic issues.

What you eat can also disrupt sleep. Consuming spicy foods close to bedtime may upset your digestive system, and caffeine may delay the onset of melatonin. Research also suggests that eating lots of added sugars and processed grains may trigger insomnia, while eating more vegetables and fruit may help prevent it.

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Hashimotos Fasting And Keto

I believe there is a way to reverse Hash! I feel so much better on keto and IF than any treatment over the past three years. Have you had any patients reversing Hashi with this program?

Thank you so much for all your work for all of us,Martha

Answer: I dont see Hashimotos very frequently so dont have much experience. Fasting and low carb diets usually drop insulin so are effective for diseases of excessive insulin such as obesity, type 2 diabetes and PCOS. However, it may also have a smaller effect on inflammation so it may certainly benefit Hashimotos as well, but there are no studies to prove this, and I have only limited clinical experience with Hashimotos.

Dr. Jason Fung

Vegetarians And Vegans May Have An Increased Risk Of Stroke

Researchers in the United Kingdom analyzed the risk of stroke and other health problems over two decades among nearly 50,000 people based on the diets they followed. The types of stroke were also analyzed, including bleeding into the brain and nonbleeding stroke . Compared with meat eaters:

  • rates of heart disease were 13% lower in pescatarians
  • rates of heart disease were 22% lower in vegetarians
  • rates of stroke were 20% higher among vegetarians. However, the overall risk was small, equal to three extra cases per 1,000 people over 10 years.
  • the higher stroke risk among vegetarians was mostly due to hemorrhagic stroke
  • the higher stroke risk was not observed among pescatarians.

If confirmed, these findings will complicate the way we look at plant-based diets. Are there serious and underappreciated downsides to these diets that should make us think twice about choosing them? Or is the increased risk of stroke heavily outweighed by cardiac and other health benefits?

This study is also a reminder that the health impact of a particular intervention may not be easy to predict or explain. In most cases, the risk of stroke and heart disease tend to rise or fall together, but that wasnt the case in this research.

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Why Do I Need To Fast Before My Blood Test

If your health care provider has told you to fast before a blood test, it means you should not eat or drink anything, except water, for several hours before your test. When you eat and drink normally, those foods and beverages are absorbed into your bloodstream. That could affect the results of certain types of blood tests.

Getting Started With Intermittent Fasting

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If you are on medication tolower your blood sugar, please consult your doctor before fasting. Warning: some doctors may pushback, so tell them this is something you want to try, but you want to do it safely. No doubt they will want you to closely monitor your blood sugar while you fast to ensure that your blood sugar does not drop too low.

Also, if youre taking medication for diabetes, youll want to be under medical supervision anyway so your doctor can reduce your medication as your blood sugar levels fall.

Finally, as we pointed out in the other article, you already fast daily when you sleep. So extending that period for a few hours is not such a big deal. Decide on an intermittent fasting plan that will work for you and experiment with it for a month. If youre not getting the results you want, change your plan until you do. Intermittent fasting may be the key to beating diabetes!

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Fasting Affects Blood Sugar Management And Insulin Resistance

What does fasting have to do with insulin? Insulin is the primary hormone our bodies use to regulate blood sugar levels. Maintaining stable blood sugar levels is an important goal for people with diabetes and is often measured by Time in Range, A1C, and fasting glucose levels.

Recently, clinical researchers looked at how IF and TRF affect things like blood sugar management and insulin resistance and found promising results.

  • In a 2021 literature review, eight studies showed that individuals who practiced intermittent fasting had significant reductions in fasting glucose levels . Other important findings included a reduction in A1C levels, weight loss, and an increase in adiponectin .

  • A study of men with prediabetes found that early morning TRF decreased insulin levels , reduced fluctuations in insulin levels, and decreased insulin resistance. This translates to an improvement in insulin levels and insulin sensitivity.

  • A research team from the University of South Australia conducted a pilot study and a larger study to look at the 5:2 IF method in people with type 2 diabetes. Both studies found significant reductions in A1C levels and body weight after 12 weeks.

Why Its Too Soon To Recommend Intermittent Fasting To Treat Type 2 Diabetes

One of the reasons intermittent fasting is so controversial is that there are limited large-scale human studies that prove its safe and effective in humans long term, says Robert Gabbay, MD, PhD, chief medical officer at Joslin Diabetes Center at Harvard Medical School in Boston.

One such study, published in July 2018 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, found that intermittent fasting was no better at improving type 2 diabetes participants blood sugar levels than regular caloric restriction after one year. Previous studies on mice suggest intermittent fasting may improve memory, reduce disease risk, and aid with weight loss, according to an article published in June 2013 in the journal CMAJ, but, as Dr. Gabbay points out, That doesnt always translate to people.

Yet Gabbay says preliminary human studies with positive results, like this weeks in BMJ Case Reports, suggest the diet is worthy of further study in a larger population over a longer period of time. For now, he cautions people with diabetes, especially those on insulin and sulfonylureas to lower their blood sugar, against trying intermittent fasting before speaking with their healthcare provider.

Fung agrees, saying medical supervision is key when fasting and managing diabetes. If youre on medication, you have to talk to your doctor because theyre the ones who are going to guide you. We were the ones who guided these patients, Fung says.

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What Is Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting has recently gained popularity as a means of improving body composition and metabolic health . Intermittent fasting refers to eating patterns based around the principle of consuming very little to no calories for time periods ranging from 12h to several days with a regular pattern . There are several different regimens of intermittent fasting. One such regimen is alternate day fasting, in which days of fasting are separated by days of ad libitum food consumption . Another method is periodic fasting, in which individuals fast for 1 or 2days a week . Finally, the most common method is time-restricted feeding, in which food consumption is only allowed during a specified window of time each day, typically with 1620h daily fasts . See Fig. for a visual representation of the most common intermittent fasting regimens.

Fig. 4

Will Intermittent Fasting Lower Blood Sugar

PART 2: Does Intermittent Fasting Help With Fat Loss, Blood Sugar Control & Inflammation?

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Will intermittent fasting lower blood sugar? More and more people are starting to practice intermittent fasting. This rise in practice is providing us with even more weight loss results. But there are health issues that people are concerned about before they start fasting. One of them is blood sugar. There are people who need to monitor their blood sugar levels and that could cause concern. Especially if you are monitoring your blood sugar and interested in intermittent fasting.

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Intermittent Fasting For Prediabetes And Type 2 Diabetes

If you have prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, there is evidence that intermittent fasting may be helpful to your treatment.

A 2018 study published in the British Medical Journal found that intermittent fasting had significant benefits for people with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes. The patients followed three 24-hour fasts per week for several months.

The patients were given a book, The Complete Guide to Fasting, by Jason Fung and Jimmy Moore, as their guide.

  • 100 percent of the patients reduced their hemoglobin A1C levels
  • The study group also reduced or reversed insulin resistance and lost significant amounts of weight.

Complications Of How Does Fiber Help Lower Blood Sugar And Cholesterol Diabetes

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To Skip Or Not To Skip: Does Intermittent Fasting Help People With Diabetes

Weve reviewed the latest research to weigh the benefits and drawbacks of intermittent fasting and time-restricted feeding for people with diabetes.

Living with diabetes means carefully making sure you are eating foods that will keep your blood sugar and insulin levels in balance. However, a recent trend in the diabetes community focuses on when to eat. You may have heard friends, family, and healthcare professionals use words like intermittent fasting and time-restricted feeding to describe this trend. We are going to take a closer look at what these eating strategies entail, how they might affect people with diabetes, and the risks and benefits to consider if you choose to skip a meal.

Intermittent fasting refers to a style of eating in which you alternate through a pattern of consuming little to no calories for a while and a normal eating schedule. Popular IF schedules include alternate day fasting, where one day you consume very little food and the next day you eat like you normally would this regimen is usually repeated every other day, though some people make exceptions to this depending on what works best for their lifestyle. Another method is periodic fasting , where you reduce your food consumption on certain days of the week but then eat regularly on the other days. These patterns aim to reduce the number of calories you are consuming.

Could Any Diet Takeaways From If Be Helpful For People With Type 2 Diabetes

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There are a few diet takeaways from the science of IF. Insulin sensitivity changes with a circadian rhythm, decreasing throughout the day and into the night. Therefore, meals that a person consumes at night are associated with higher glucose and insulin levels.

Liming the hours of eating to a time earlier in the day for example, selecting an 8-hour window between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. or even 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. is effective in boosting metabolism and aiding in weight loss.

People should also try to avoid eating and snacking shortly before going to bed. Not snacking between meals will facilitate the metabolic switch from the use of glucose for energy to the use of fat.

A balanced diet is also important, so people should avoid sugars and processed carbohydrates, focusing instead on eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meat, and healthy fats.

Perhaps the most important factor, though, is that people choose an eating plan that they can sustain in the long term.

Dr. Kelly N. Wood, M.D., is an internal medicine physician who is board certified in Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism. She earned her medical degree from The University of the West Indies in Barbados before relocating to the United States in 2006. Dr. Kelly is currently in clinical practice in Atlanta, GA.

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Food Fitness And Prevention Of Diabetes

Bottom Line: There is much we can do with a healthy lifestyle alone, no medications needed, to prevent diabetes, states Dr. James Barnard, Distinguished Professor Emeritus at UCLA and author of more than 200 studies on the relationship between lifestyle habits and chronic diseases like diabetes.

In fact, a healthy lifestyle has proven more effective than medication in staving off diabetes.

Lifestyle changes, like those taught at the Pritikin Center, are nearly twice as effective as medication in preventing pre-diabetes from turning into diabetes.

In a landmark study, the NIH-sponsored Diabetes Prevention Program2, scientists followed 3,234 men and women with pre-diabetes for three years.

One-third of them adopted lifestyle changes that were similar to the Pritikin Program: a daily eating plan of low-calorie-dense, high-fiber foods exercising for at least 30 minutes five days a week and a 7% weight loss.

Another third of these pre-diabetics took a drug metformin .

The remaining third, the control group, took a placebo.

The results? Those on the lifestyle-change plan reduced the progression to full-blown type 2 diabetes by 58% compared to the control group. The reduction was even greater 71% among those aged 60 years or older.

Treatment with the drug metformin reduced the progression to type 2 diabetes by just 31%.

Put simply, lifestyle changes were nearly twice as effective as medication in preventing pre-diabetes from turning into diabetes.

Is Intermittent Fasting Safe For People With Prediabetes And Type 2 Diabetes

While studies on intermittent fasting have demonstrated positive improvements in several key measurements of diabetes , it is important to know that fasting might have negative side effects for someone with diabetes. In a clinical study on intermittent fasting among 137 people with type 2 diabetes, dizziness, headaches, hunger, and hypoglycemia were the side effects most often reported. This study was conducted using the 5:2 IF approach.

When it comes to blood sugar, Both IF and TRF will drop a persons glucose levels, meaning that medication adjustments are necessary to avoid hypoglycemia during the period of calorie restriction, said Dr. Robert Ratner, a long-time scientific and medical leader in diabetes. Changes in eating patterns on a daily basis will also require medication adjustments to keep glucose levels in range.

There is currently no evidence to suggest that TRF would be less safe than IF, in particular because the fasting windows for TRF are shorter. IF and TRF appear to be most safe for people who do not take glucose-lowering medications that could cause hypoglycemia.

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Which Is Right For You

Finding the best glucose monitoring system that is right for you is about finding the choice that best suits your needs. By considering the benefits and limitations between the different systems that are available in Canada, you can find a system that meets your individual requirements while improving the efficiency and effectiveness of your diabetes care routine.

Our glucose monitoring comparison chart provides a summary of CGM, Flash glucose monitoring devices and test strips and meters.

How Intermittent Fasting Works

When to Test Your Blood Sugar During A Fast

The primary goal of intermittent fasting for weight loss is to get the insulin levels to decrease to a level where the body will begin to burn stored fat for energy.

Here is how it works. When the food we eat is metabolized , it ends up as molecules in the blood stream. One such molecule is glucose . Normally, when there is more circulating blood glucose than the body can use for energy, the excess is stored as fat for future use. But, for glucose to be utilized by the cells, it requires insulin. Between meals the body doesnt require insulin so insulin levels decline. When insulin levels are low, the fat cells release some of the stored glucose, resulting in weight loss.

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Beware The Studys Limitations

This study linking a vegetarian diet with a higher risk of hemorrhagic stroke has a number of important limitations that should temper the concerns of vegetarians.

  • The study was observational. That means it simply observed what happened among different people who followed different diets over time, without being able to account for every other relevant factor. For example, if vegetarians chose plant-based diets because of a family history of stroke, it could be their genes driving the higher rates of stroke, not the diet.
  • The findings might have been different if the study had included a different study population, such as one with different genetic backgrounds or higher rates of obesity.
  • The data regarding diet was self-reported. While the use of dietary surveys is common and necessary in research that requires a large number of study subjects, it isnt always reliable.
  • The study was not large enough to reliably sort out differences in the rates of disease between vegans and vegetarians. As a result, its not clear whether the increased stroke risk applies to all vegetarians, or whether vegans might have a different risk.
  • We dont know whether the health outcomes reported in this study might be due to what is included in the diet or what is eliminated. For example, is the lower risk of heart disease among vegetarians due to the plant-based diet, or is it just due to the restriction of animal-based products?

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