Diabetics Beware - The Secret Source of Elevated Blood Sugars

Posted by administrator Saturday, December 20, 2008

A lot what you've probably been taught about the basic food groups is just plain wrong. That's particularly true for diabetics who go on diets to control their blood sugars. For lowering blood glucose levels, diet is essential, but just because you have to limit your carbs doesn't mean you can gorge your proteins.

A fundamental fact about food and pharmacology is that it is impossible to predict exactly how any single individual will react to a given food or medication.

The foods we eat, if you do not consider water, micronutrients, and indigestible fibers and proteins, can be considered in terms of the categories of macronutrients: carbohydrate, protein, and fat. Labeling food in terms of carbs, protein, and fat is, of course, an oversimplification, but it is a good place to start. Nutritionists talk about carbs, protein, and fat in terms of calories, because the body can burn all three.

The body constructs proteins from building blocks known as amino acids. Digestion breaks down protein into its amino acid components, and the body reassembles amino acids into proteins that make muscle, vital organs, and nerves, as well as enzymes, hormones, and neurotransmitters.

Most diabetics are not aware that protein is the body's second most important source of blood sugar. The body slowly transforms up to 36 per cent of protein into glucose, if blood sugar levels fall too low, if the body does not make enough insulin, or if so much protein has been eaten the body's other amino acid needs have been met. If you eat a 3-1/2 oz (100 gram) hamburger patty without a bun and no other carbohydrates, for example, your liver will slowly transform some of the protein in the burger into about 7 grams of glucose. The body cannot transform carbohydrate or fat into protein.

Turning protein into glucose releases phosphate, and the only way the body can expel excess phosphate is with the help of calcium. The body needs about 1500 milligrams of calcium for every pound (454 grams) of protein consumed. If the body does not get calcium from the diet, it will take calcium from the bones.

So, what's the bottom line of this discussion for diabetics? Two things: One, protein can raise your blood sugars, too. Two, to use protein without carbs (when you are on a low-carb diet), your body needs plenty of calcium. A little calcium-rich food (dairy, dark greens, cold water fish) or a calcium supplement (450 mg being all your body can absorb) 2 or 3 times a day is essential to the long-term success of any diabetic's low-carb diet.

Read Do Diabetics Need Lipitor and Lower Your Blood Sugars 1-2-3. Robert Rister is author of nine books and over 2,000 articles on natural health.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Robert_Rister

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