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Re: Cortisol/Sugar Connection - Thanks BCat! Barbara Cat

Posted by Ron Hill on August 27, 2003, at 15:42:44

In reply to Re: The Cortisol/Sugar Connection Ron Hill, posted by Barbara Cat on August 17, 2003, at 17:22:30


Thank you very much for taking the time to dig up this cortisol/sugar information for me. Sorry to take ten days to post my thanks.

In the early 80's I became convinced that a low-fat high-complex carbohydrate diet was best for my health and my training. I was wrong! About four or five years ago I came to the conclusion that I am slightly-to-moderately hypoglycemic. So I read "Enter the Zone" by Dr. Barry Sears and the book changed my thinking with regard to diet.

As a result, I try to never eat sugar during the day in order to avoid the blood sugar rollercoaster (eat sugar, insulin released, blood sugar goes too low). I experience the rollercoaster even with complex carbohydrates. Therefore, I always try to eat adequate protein and a small amount of good fat with my fruits and vegetables (and occasional whole grains). However, since I am a junk-food addict at heart, I would periodically binge on treats just before bedtime. My rationale was that the blood sugar rollercoaster associated with my late night snack would be inconsequential because I'd be asleep when my blood sugar dropped. But after reading the information you kindly provided, I have changed my thinking on the subject and Im attempting to forgo my late night indulging.

Tell me this; what good is it for me to have an addictive personality if I'm not allowed to partake in any of my addictions?

Thanks again, BCat!

-- Ron

> Hi Ron,
> Here's a quick and dirty on the subject:
> There's basically a condition called 'reactive hypoglycemia' which isn't in the mainstream medical lexicon, which only measures fasting glucose and more severe/standard hypoglycemia. "Reactive hypoglycemia" describes a condition that roller coasters up and down the sugar scale all day, causing our already stressed out adrenal systems additional dysfunction. As this article briefly goes into, cortisol which controls blood sugar, should remain low at night. Adrenal glands make cortisol. Adrenal glands become malfunctioning through an overload of stress. There results an inability to smoothly orchestrate cellular insulin/glucose transport causing depression and anxiety among other health issues. Too high a simple sugar condition in the blood causes spikes of cortisol trying to control the sugar/insulin symphony and it just can't because this hormonal system/balance is dysfunctional. Cortisol spikes are like little jolts of adrenaline and high octane caffeine - not good for nighttime sleepies.
> Anyhow, the whole subject is fascinating and only one piece of the puzzle that is emerging for me - the Hypothalamus/Pituitary/Adrenal axis implication in many of our woes (I know in my own). There's also a very good little known book called "Lights Out: Sleep, Sugar, and Survival" by T.S. Wiley. Stuff in there that seems no-brainer revolutionary material but we never hear about it or make the connection. I think you'd enjoy it. Happy reading. - Barbara




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