Getting high blood sugars after a period of fasting is often puzzling to those not familiar with the Dawn Phenomenon. The Somogyi effect is also called reactive hyperglycaemia and happens in type 2 diabetic patients. The Dawn Effect, sometimes also called the Dawn Phenomenon (DP) was first described about 30 years ago. Just before awakening (around 4am), the body secretes higher levels of Growth Hormone, cortisol, glucagon and adrenalin. Since these hormones all tend to raise blood sugars, we might expect that our sugars would go through the roof in the early morning. So, in the normal, non-diabetic situation, blood sugars are not stable throughout 24 hours.
The underlying cause of insulin resistance is the fact that the liver is overstuffed with fat and sugar, like 10 pounds of sausage meat in a 5 pound skin. In the Dawn Phenomenon, the body is under orders to release some of the stored sugar into the bloodstream. Insulin moves the sugar from the blood where they see it, and into the tissues (liver) where they cannot. In the IDM program, we typically use medications to keep blood sugars in a reasonable, but not low range during fasting. The Dawn Phenomenon, or higher blood sugars during fasting does not mean you are doing anything wrong.
This post was sponsored by Libbey as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central.
Brown fat is found in all humans, however it is mainly found in newborn babies around their neck and shoulders as they do not yet shiver when cold to maintain their body temperature. This type of fat is also common in hibernating animals because while hibernating the animal's goal is to maintain its body temperature during the cold period. Scientists have been led to believe that people who are regularly active and are within a healthy body weight range tend to have a higher percentage of brown fat in their body compared to someone of a similar age that is sedentary and is considered overweight. The final destination of a journey is not, after all, the last item on the agenda, but rather some understanding, however simple or provisional, of what one has seen.
In these modern times, with the plethora of blood-sugar-related diseases, we need tools like GI and GL to help us understand ways to control blood sugar. The self-testing, graphic approach to food testing developed in the balance of the newsletter is a less scientific but a more dynamic way to explore postprandial (post-meal) blood glucose levels (BGLs). GI measures the blood glucose impact of foods eaten in isolation, yet we rarely consume foods this way.
GI readings vary with the individual—blood sugar and insulin reactions are more extreme for diabetics, for example (See Charts 2A and 2B). GIs are calculated in the science lab as the day’s first meal after a 12-hour fast and using a fixed serving that includes 50 grams of carbohydrate.  Most of our daily calories, however, are consumed in combination and throughout the day, when our blood sugar is affected by other foods that we have eaten earlier, as well as by our level of activity. Of the following numbered charts, the first three are based upon scientific research journal articles (Charts 1, 2A, 2B), while the last four (Charts 3-6) are constructed from my own self-testing of foods4 using a simple blood glucose monitor.
Chart 1:  Blood Sugar Curves of White Bread Compared to Bread with Added Fiber, Sourdough, and Vinegar. Chart 3:  Instant Oatmeal, Whole Oats (Soaked and Not Soaked), and Whole Oats Combined with a Protein and Fat.
To fully appreciate the impact of two back-to-back carbohydrate breakfasts please notice that the scale used for Chart 6 is twice that of Charts 3-5. Resetting the Table–to Control Blood Sugar (For a discussion of other strategies, see April 2011). Ramekins filled with condiments like nuts and seeds (GI=0).  Nuts and seeds provide healthy fats, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, while they slow digestion and curb blood sugar. Sourdough bread or whole-grain bread with whole kernels; butter from grass-fed cows and organic nut and seed butters such as tahini and pumpkin seed butter.
A pitcher of water and glasses for all—sometimes we mistake hunger for what is in fact thirst.  You might flavor the water with a little lemon juice or other flavoring.
Because 12-hour fasting, pre-meal blood sugar reading can vary, all data points at time zero prior to the first morning meal were indexed to zero in order to illustrate the change from a neutral starting point.
I use the label “traditional” carbohydrates, just as we call unrefined fats, “traditional” fats. When I was 13 my Mother challenged my doctor to get a swollen gland biopsied from me, that he said was probably just puberty playing with my hormones. 1) I received a U at A-Level maths or for my American friends, I totally flunked math at High School . 2) I am not a professional scientist or doctor and the way that I do things is to engage more people in the discussion of food. Right…now we can continue with why I didn’t get fat eating over 5,000 calories a day of a high fat low carb diet of natural foods for 21 days! The aged old question asked by nutrition scientists and dieters alike is, is a calorie a calorie?
I have always been a sceptic of the efficacy of calories use in how we interact with food, as I have always thought that I eat more than I burn yet remain the same weight and waist measurement. You may be asking yourself, why did you choose a high fat diet and why didn’t you get fat? In the diagram below you can see that a person who weighs 80kg and is 15% body fat, nearly what I am, stores approximately 108,000 calories of body fat. To explain how our body actually interacts with food I’m going to use a rather abstract metaphor but one we can all relate to and if you agree with it even demonstrate it at a dinner party. Sooooo…to answer your original question of why did you choose a high fat diet and why didn’t you get fat? It is completely possible to reverse these biochemical imbalances with a high carb natural foods diet as well as with a high fat natural foods diet, as this has been demonstrated with doctors from both sides of the carbs vs fat wars. If you have eaten real food from when you were a child you will probably, not definitely though, have no problem eating natural carbohydrates and still be able to use your body fat stores for energy as you haven’t been biochemically damaged. I recommend to do this for 21 days to help obtain your fat metabolism, biochemical balance and health back. Once you have completed 21 days of this obtain health plan then you can move on to what I call the maintain health forever plan. Our current weight management advice is to eat less and exercise more, which in my opinion is negligent, moronic and utterly useless advice.
You may have noticed that I haven’t mentioned exercise as part of this solution and the reason for that is because the main part of anyone obtaining and maintaining their health is eating correctly. For me the journey of proving a calorie is not just a calorie when it comes to eating food is not over.
Insulin secretion also increases in the early morning to counteract the counter regulatory hormones.
Like the overinflated balloon, the liver puts forth prodigious amounts of sugar in order to relieve itself of this toxic sugar burden.
Remember, there are hormonal changes during fasting that include increases in growth hormone, adrenalin, glucagon and cortisol. They are medication that don't actually help the patient in any way, but make the doctors feel better about themselves. We are joining the Black White Sunday blog hop hosted by our friends, Sugar at GoldenWoofs Nola the Dachshund!
The animal does not need to create as much ATP because not as much is needed while it is so sedentary, but instead its priority is just to remain still while sleeping and keep warm enough that it does not die.


This may occur because those who are active and are at a healthy body weight would usually have a lower fasting blood sugar level, and therefore secrete less insulin.
The second factor—the postwar shift from traditional to refined carbohydrates—is largely due to the growing role of the commercial food industry and processed, convenience foods.  Convenience foods must have a long shelf-life, so food companies rely upon refined flours and oils, which do not go rancid.
Visual pictures of postprandial blood sugar behavior, while less scientific than GI measurements, are nevertheless powerful learning tools, providing a real flavor for how our body reacts when we eat different kinds of foods. This chart illustrates the second meal effect– that what we eat at one meal affects postprandial blood sugar behavior at the next. What we do to our children when we give them a sugary cereal or a Pop-tart for breakfast extends beyond this first meal to affect their blood sugar, hunger, concentration, and desire to overeat throughout the rest of the day. One of the best herbs and spices to moderate blood sugar.  It can be sprinkled on hot cereals and desserts such as puddings, custards, and stewed fruits. After the biopsy it turned out that it was a cancer called Hodgkins disease, but thankfully to my Mother’s persistent nature we caught it early and after 4 and a half months of chemotherapy I was clear.
With this in mind I decided to take action on this challenging question by conducting a 21 day experiment where I ate 5,794 calories of a high fat low carb diet of natural foods to see if I put on as much weight as the calorie formula says I should.
Well the simple answer is dietary fat doesn’t really make you fat and in fact is the least likely macro-nutrient to make you fat from overconsumption. Again this is a great biochemical trick, and much larger storage capability for energy compared to carbohydrates, so that in hard times we can call upon this large energy store and survive for around 21 days until food is available again. In this metaphor the fat water is able to flow down the small plug hole with no problems as energy out. However, if you have eaten quite a lot of sugary and refined carbohydrates such as candy, sweets, poor quality bread and pasta, crisps, doughnuts, pastries etc.
The best part of this type of diet is that you don’t have to worry about calories, you just stop when your full and your body will do the rest. This includes all the foods in the obtain plan as well as full fat dairy such as cream and butter, low GI fruit such as berries and citrus fruit and some low GI starches such as sweet potato and pulses. The reason people are putting on weight and getting sick is not because they are eating too much but because they are eating too much FAKE foods.
Exercise can help move things along quicker and re-balance your biochemical health, but it is important to know that you can’t out exercise a bad diet. In September I will be doing another 21 day 5,000 calorie challenge with refined and sugary carbohydrates and in January 2014 I will be doing it with just natural carbohydrates, where I will go into more detail about how our body interacts with food.
That is, they counter the blood sugar lowering effects of insulin, meaning that they raise blood sugars. Around 4 am, counter regulatory hormones surge and insulin is also released to counter this.
When our liver gets the 'go' signal to release sugar, it does so in huge amounts, overwhelming the pitiful attempts of the insulin to keep it bottled up inside.
If we stop insulin, there is a risk that it comes out much too quickly (like the overinflated ballon releasing all at once).
This experience taught me that it doesn’t matter how many letters are written after your name, what matters are the words that come out of your mouth and the actions that you take. The notion that we are just a simple calorie formula, adding and subtracting calories from a predetermined daily energy expenditure by nature is a fundamental flaw in how we perceive food and go about weight management. If you’d like to see my daily diet please click here to download or see the table below. If you ask any body builder what macronutrient they manipulate in order to gain or lose weight, they’ll tell you carbohydrates. The sink full of water is your fat stores with the plug hole as your energy out from fat stores and the drinking glass is your carb stores which you can drink from for energy. The fat stores are either kept topped up through the fat tap or by the carbs tap from the overflowing mechanism and as long as they aren’t refined, surgary or unnatural carbs this can and does work for some but not all people. Simply eat as much fatty fish, meat, eggs, nuts and green leafy vegetables as you like…I know I know, pretty much Atkins. When bringing back these foods it’s important to see how your body reacts to them as some people will be fine with them but for some people that have been biochemically imbalanced for too long even low GI fruits can be detrimental. From this experience my message to health professionals around the world is to advise your clients or patients to eat less fake food and exercise the choice to eat real food more. The best exercises for re-balancing your biochemical health is strength training, which helps maintain muscle mass for a better immune system, and walking in nature, which is important for cognitive function and stress management.
However, if you look closely at the blood sugar readings, there is a slight increase in the morning time.
However, in T2D, the body has high insulin resistance, meaning that the insulin has minimal effect at lowering the blood sugars. This results in the clinical diagnosis of T2D, when doctors are able to see the high blood sugars. Lots of doctors consider it bad, because they are only concerned about the sugar that they see (in the blood).
So we want to use less insulin, but enough to release the stored sugars at a reasonable measured pace.
If your body stores are filled to bursting, then you will expel as much of that sugar as possible. This is why diabetes and obesity often go hand-in-hand (90% of diabetics are either overweight or obese). David Ludwig regarding high-glycemic foods and overeating, cited in the Recommended Reading section at the conclusion of this newsletter. A philosophy that has kept me sceptical of even the most qualified expert and a man of action in order to find the truth. In a clear and concise statement, a calorie is a calorie but the nutrients of the food and your individual biochemistry dictate how your body expresses those calories. Not exactly congruent with the linear weight gain and waist increase the calorie formula shows in my results graph and photos below. In their current biochemical status they have either limited ability or can’t use the body fat they have stored for energy because of biochemical imbalances in their body.
We have copious amounts of data showing traditional diets that are high in fat and high in carbs with both populations living happy healthy lives. This is where measuring your weight, waist and taking photos of yourself comes in to track your progress. Although I think personal responsibility is very powerful and is part of reversing this obesity epidemic it is not solely down to us. If you or someone you know is looking for information on managing GD with real food, I highly recommend it!Gestational diabetes is never part of any mom’s plan . Around 4am or so, knowing that you will soon be waking up, your body prepares you for the upcoming day. Since the counter regulatory hormones (mostly growth hormone) still are working, blood sugars rise unopposed, and therefore much higher than the normal non diabetic situation. A physician needs to adjust the medications to properly control the flow of sugar out of the liver.
The reason for this is that when we store carbohydrates we can store approximately 2,000 calories or 500g worth on the average person before it spills over into your fat stores.
Simply put the energy in their body fat stores is trapped and accumulating, similar to a tumour that is growing.
You place the drinking glass under the carbs tap that catches and store the carbs flowing out of the tap, with the overflowing carb water being stored in your fat stores. Having to fill it up at every given moment with refined, sugary and unnatural carbs to survive, which drives cravings, as their ability to use body fat for energy diminishes and their fat stores grow exponentially.


Once you become a fat burner you are still able to use carbohydrates for energy but if you become just a carb burner then you aren’t able to or have limited ability to burn fat. Governments around the world must start improving policies to make real food more widely available, removing fake foods from schools and stop $%*&ing subsidising sugar companies! Your body then tries to increase the glucose in the blood by encouraging the liver to release some of its stored sugar and fat.
This biochemical trick of being able to store carbohydrates in the muscle and liver can be useful when we need quick intense energy, along with being able to create fat from carbohydrate for the multitude of biochemical processes that we need fat for. Unless their biochemical imbalances are rebalanced they will remain overweight or obese, even in a calorie deficit in a lot of cases, and will most likely develop either type 2 diabetes, chronic heart disease, cancer, alzheimer’s or even a combination of these called metabolic syndrome. If you are one of these people I highly recommend you go for a check up with your doctor as soon as possible.
This might be news to some low fat advocates but a lot of the high carbohydrate diet you’re eating actually becomes fat in your body, just like how a cow creates fatty milk from grass. Your body can remain the same weight but completely change in shape and you will only be able to tell that from a photo from yourself and slightly from your waist measurement. I own a business that is trying to improve peoples health and reduce the cost to the NHS yet I don’t get any subsidise from the government…QED??? Yet there are many misconceptions about this diagnosis, both in conventional health care and the integrative medicine world. In order to prevent the sugars from rising too much, insulin increases to act as a 'brake' on the system.
However when you have T2D, there is too much sugar released from the liver which shows up in the blood like an uninvited guest.'This is a 'placebo' line. Which causes insulin resistance, leptin resistance, liver damage and a multitude of other biochemical problems that contribute to peoples body’s not working properly and developing the aforementioned diseases. Hormones are secreted in a pulsatile manner peaking in the early morning hours then falling to low levels during the day.
Ia€™ll also be sharing why the typicalA gestational diabetes diet fails and why a real food, nutrient-dense, lower carbohydrate approach is ideal for managing gestational diabetes.What is Gestational Diabetes?Gestational diabetes is usually defined as diabetes that develops or is first diagnosed during pregnancy. However, it can also be defined as a€?insulin resistancea€? or a€?carbohydrate intolerancea€? during pregnancy.I prefer to rely on the latter description because, at the end of the day, gestational diabetes is the result of insulin resistance, which means a woman is unable to tolerate large amounts of carbohydrates without experiencing high blood sugar. However, in our modern world where food is rarely scarce and refined carbohydrates are everywhere, this adaptation can work against us. This is especially true if a woman already has some level of insulin resistance before becoming pregnant, which is becoming more common.[2]Why Early Screening for Gestational Diabetes is HelpfulIn years past, it was thought that the elevated blood sugar levels seen with gestational diabetes only begin to occur in the second and third trimester, when placental hormones are at their peak and insulin resistance spikes. This is why gestational diabetes is classically screened for around 24-28 weeks of pregnancy.However, researchers have now found that gestational diabetes can be predicted earlier, by relying on a blood test called hemoglobin A1c (for short, A1c).
As their pregnancies progressed, their insulin resistance got more severe, as a natural result of placental hormones and weight gain, resulting in elevated blood sugar.Moreover, gestational diabetes is increasingly believed to be an early indicator for the later development of diabetes, which means a womana€™s insulin resistance continues or worsens years after they give birth.
Women who have gestational diabetes have a 7-fold higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life.[4]Can Gestational Diabetes be Prevented?Not all women with gestational diabetes have preexisting issues with glucose tolerance or insulin resistance, but research does show that wise preconception practices may prevent some cases of gestational diabetes.
For women with a body mass index (BMI) greater than 35, the risk of gestational diabetes is five times greater than a woman at a healthy weight, most likely because insulin resistance tends to go up at higher body weight.[8]Vitamin D deficiency has also been associated with gestational diabetes (and, not surprisingly, insulin resistance).
When those two arena€™t enough to bring the blood sugar levels down to normal, a woman may need insulin or medication.Many women would rather make dietary changes to control their gestational diabetes, than jump right to medicine (and most doctors feel the same way).
Often, much to their disappointment, my patients had to start medication or insulin in order to control their blood sugar. Carbohydrates are the primary macronutrient that raises the blood sugar, so why are we suggesting they eat lots of carbohydrates?The primary reason clinicians are afraid to endorse a lower carbohydrate diet for pregnancy is that theya€™ve been given outdated information regarding ketosis.
This topic is so complex that I devote an entire chapter to in my book,A Real Food for Gestational Diabetes. But the short answer is that low-level nutritional ketosis is common during pregnancy, does not carry the same risks as starvation ketosis or diabetic ketoacidosis, and does not negatively impact the brain development of a baby.[19]What Level of Carbohydrates is Best?There will likely always be controversy around the ideal level of carbohydrates a woman should consume during pregnancy and frankly, I believe it will vary woman-to-woman based on her blood sugar control. But, in general, I find most women with gestational diabetes benefit from a diet that has less than 175g of carbohydrates per day.My approach is to have a woman monitor her blood sugar while eating her usual diet (using a home glucose monitor) to get a baseline of how food affects her blood sugar.
Below are some simple tips you can implement.Request getting your HbA1c (hemoglobin A1c) measured with your first trimester labs to get a better idea of your baseline blood sugar control. That way, you can take action earlier in your pregnancy if you need to.Ask to have your vitamin D levels measured (25-hydroxy vitamin D), so you can correct deficiency if ita€™s present.
Depending on where you live, time of year, and time spent outdoors in sunlight, you may need to add a vitamin D supplement to meet target levels.[22]If you have gestational diabetes, monitor your blood sugar in the morning (fasting) and after each meal to learn your bodya€™s unique pattern and response to different foods (and combinations of food). Adjust your diet and exercise levels accordingly, knowing that carbohydrates tend to raise your blood sugar the most, fat and protein tend to stabilize your blood sugar, and exercise tends to lower your blood sugar.Emphasize foods with plenty of fat and protein, both of which stabilize, rather than directly raise, the blood sugar.
Pasture-raised meat (including organ meat), poultry, eggs, wild-caught fish, full-fat cheese, heavy cream, nuts, seeds, avocados, olives, butter, and some coconut products fit into this category.Embrace low-glycemic sources of carbohydrates, like non-starchy vegetables (lots of these!), nuts, seeds, and low-sugar fruit (like berries). For example, ita€™s better for your blood sugar levels to have a servings of sweet potatoes alongside grass-fed beef, sauteed spinach, and butter rather than by itself.Avoid large portions of carbohydrates at one time to prevent blood sugar spikes.
Ita€™s far better to have fruit as a snack twice per day than to have a large fruit salad in one sitting.Exercise regularly. A real food approach is ideal for gestational diabetes, because it emphasizes nutrient-dense foods that provide a baby with all the critical nutrients for growth, while also minimizing blood sugar spikes.Knowledge is power.
2Real Food On A Budget Pregnancy 10 Comments About Lily Nichols, RDN, CDE, CLTLily Nichols, RDN, CDE, CLT is one of the countrya€™s most sought after a€?real food for pregnancya€™ experts whose approach to nutrition embraces real food, integrative medicine, and mindful eating.She is a regular speaker at medical conferences on gestational diabetes and prenatal nutrition.
I had gestational diabetes during my pregnancy and it was one of the most frustrating and depressing seasons of my life.
I had no traditional risk factors other than maternal age over 30, although since then I’ve done a lot of research and discovered there is a link between autoimmune disease and gestational diabetes. I could talk on and on about my experience, what I learned, what I will do differently next time, etc (supplements, exercise, diet). I felt like the focus was on birthing a baby of a certain size rather than on our day-to-day health and well-being. In the end my son was born healthy at 39 weeks with barely any sign that his mom had gestational diabetes. Our great frustration is that he is now allergic to all the foods I was required to eat in large quantities for that diet- dairy, eggs, chicken, blueberries. Brewer’s Pregnancy Diet is an excellent resource that eliminates many pregnancy complications. The whole diagnosis of gestational diabetes can be a real pain to deal with without the right kind of help.
Protein, vegetables, a little fruit (low on the glycemic index), higher fat dairy…Thanks for this post! Instead of hearing snarky comments like, “You do know that *half* a banana is one serving, right?” Yeah, maybe not eating bananas at all would have been easier! I have been gluten free for several years and I feel that I should have been gluten free when I was pregnant. My fasting levels are checked every year or so because of my high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. I was able to get my blood sugars under tight control basically how you suggested- monitoring and adjusting my diet accordingly.
I’m so nauseous and all I can tolerate (barely) is crackers, bread, rice, and watered down juice or broth. On the other hand, I think I am actually glad I was diagnosed with GD, because it certainly gave me a huge kick in the butt down the path of healthy living, good nutrition, and label reading!



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Comments

  1. 01.09.2015 at 15:20:32


    Blood sugar and she had which are then absorbed into the bloodstream HbA1c.

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  2. 01.09.2015 at 14:41:57


    Levels are regulated the long term, addressing lifestyle.

    Author: Bro_Zloben