How To Prevent Hot Flashes In Diabetes
Whether you are menopausal, diabetic, or both, there are several things you can do to prevent hot flashes and sweating:
- Maintain a healthy body weight
- Eat a balanced diet and exercise daily
- Eat regularly to prevent low blood sugar
- Avoid triggers such as spicy food, caffeine, alcohol, smoking, hot drinks and MSG
- Practice relaxation techniques to keep stress to a minimum
- Keep a fan handy in case you become too hot
- Use a fan or air conditioner to keep your bedroom cool at night
- Invest in cooling pillows and sheets
- Wear loose fitting clothing
- Choose natural, breathable fabrics such as cotton, linen, hemp, or bamboo
- Wash and change your clothes regularly
Keep a diary of when your hot flashes occur to identify your personal triggers. You can then avoid these situations and hopefully prevent hot flashes.
How Much Sugar Is Ok
According to the latest government guidelines, adults should consume no more than 30g of sugar per day which is the equivalent of 7 teaspoons worth. To put this into perspective a single chocolate bar typically contains 6 teaspoons, a jam-filled doughnut is around 5 and a can of fizzy drink is as much as 8 teaspoons.
How To Ease The Symptoms Of Diabetic Night Sweats
- Prepare your sleeping environment: Make sure your bedroom is not too warm. Open windows or use fans to keep air circulating around the room, and make sure you turn down your heating in enough time for the room to cool before you will be heading for bed. That way your nocturnal hypoglycemia symptoms can be kept to a minimum.
- Choose natural fibers to sleep in: Curling up in natural fibers, as opposed to synthetic ones, can have a miraculous effect on your sleep. Bedding made from natural fibers can help to regulate your body temperature, and will absorb moisture, taking it away from your body. Wool, in particular, is known for its ability to keep you feeling dry and cool throughout a warm night, as it is more absorbent than other natural fibers such as feather or down. This means that even if you are suffering from diabetic night sweats, wool comforters and nightclothes can help you get a better nights sleep.
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Why Managing Blood Sugar And Reducing Hot Flashes Matters To Your Health
The JCEM study concluded the association between hot flashes and blood sugar levels may also help us understand how hot flashes relate to heart disease.
The studys lead author, Rebecca Thurston, Ph.D., professor of psychiatry, clinical and translational science, epidemiology, and psychology at the University of Pittsburgh told Healthline that frequent and ongoing hot flashes during menopause means a higher risk of having a cardiovascular event over the next 20 years.
That correlation makes sense, given the connection between blood glucose levels and heart disease generally.
Everyday Health explains that high blood sugar levels can cause arteries to become stiff and hard, while fat accumulates inside them. This atherosclerosis can block the arteries to the heart and brain, causing a heart attack or stroke.
Can Menopause Cause High Blood Sugar The Truth Revealed
The answer to the question of how menopause affects blood sugar is complicated. There are a variety of factors that can contribute to high sugar levels, including age, weight, diet, and genetics.
Menopause itself doesnt cause high blood glucose levels, but the hormonal changes associated with menopause can lead to insulin resistance.
Then, of course, your body has a harder time using insulin to move glucose from your bloodstream into your cells. As a result, the level of sugar may rise.
Also, some common symptoms of menopause can also increase your blood sugar.
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No Symptoms Be Alarmed
Surprisingly, the most dangerous episodes of hypoglycemia occur with little or no warning. When low blood glucose occurs on a regular basis, the body can become used to the warning signs and the person may stop noticing symptoms. This is a particularly dangerous condition known as hypoglycemic unawareness. People with this condition might not realize they have low blood glucose until it’s dangerously low seizures and coma are sometimes the first indication of a problem. The good news is that this condition can often be reversed allowing people to once again notice the signs of low blood glucose if hypoglycemia is avoided for a few weeks through careful monitoring of blood glucose.
Is Sugar In Your Diet Causing Increased Hot Flashes Night Sweats & Weight Gain
Sugar consumption in the United States is at an all-time high. In the early 1800s, most Americans consumed about 22.4 grams of sugar each day.3 In todays society, the average person consumes about 70 grams of sugar each day.3 However, the American Heart Association recommends no more than 35 grams of added sugar for men and no more than 25 grams per day for women.4 From a naturopathic perspective for optimal living and health, I recommend added sugar intake should be no more than 15 grams per day. Unfortunately, sugar has become one of the hardest ingredients for Americans to stay away from. Up to 75% of Americans eat too much sugar, meaning they consume well over the recommended maximum.5 Regrettably, sugar consumption has been linked to diabetes, heart disease, chronic inflammation, weight gain, fatty liver and high blood pressure.6 More recent studies show that blood sugar irregularities and insulin resistance is linked to more severe menopausal symptoms!8
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What Are Hot Flashes
Hot flashes are one of the most annoying symptoms of perimenopause and menopause. They can happen at any time and seemingly come out of nowhere. Picture dining out and having a lovely glass of red wine.
Next thing you know, a fire radiates from your core to your limbs and through the top of your head. Your heart is pounding furiously as you desperately search for a fan. And just as you feel like youre about to spontaneously combust, a cold sweat ensues, leaving you in need of a towel and a blanket. Sound familiar?
According to an article in the Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism Clinics of North America, up to 85% of menopausal women report enduring hot flashes. In fact, hot flashes and night sweats can interfere with everything from sleep to relationships.
As for me, my husband and I no longer cuddle in bed because it triggers a hot flash. And I shiver every night because I have drenching night sweats that make me cold when the hot flash is over.
Unfortunately, the Mayo Clinic writes most women can expect these hot flash symptoms to stick around for some time about seven years. Still, up to 15 percent of menopausal women will suffer from hot flashes for 15 years or more. At 81, my mother still has hot flashes! Now, thats disheartening!
What Causes Hot Flashes
According to Medical News Today, fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone in menopause impact our brains ability to regulate body temperature, causing hot flashes. The Mayo Clinic further explains that decreased estrogen levels cause the hypothalamus in our brain to react more when our body temperature changes slightly. And this reactivity ultimately leads to a hot flash.
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How Can I Prevent Low Blood Glucose
All people with diabetes:
- If you experience low blood glucose often, ask your doctor if setting a higher goal for your A1C level may be appropriate.
- Ask your doctor to look at the test results from your home blood glucose monitor. These results reveal how often you have low blood glucose and when these episodes occur. Your doctor will look for patterns to see if low glucose happens after exercise or at certain times of day, for example.
- If you’ve had low blood glucose in the past, consider wearing a medical alert bracelet so that others will know that you have diabetes in the event of an emergency.
- Keep a fast-acting carbohydrate in your bag, desk drawer, car and other places for easy access. Good options include hard candy, fruit juice or glucose paste or tablets, which can be purchased at most pharmacies.
- Ask your doctor for an emergency glucagon kit. This kit contains a fast- acting medication that can be injected in case of loss of consciousness because of low blood glucose. Keep one kit at home and one at work or school.
- Monitor your blood glucose regularly so that low levels can be corrected before symptoms progress.
Consumer Health: Diabetes And Menopause
November is National Diabetes Month, which makes this a good time to learn about the particular challenges of diabetes and menopause.
More than 34 million people in the U.S. have diabetes, and more than 88 million adults in the U.S. over one-third have prediabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Diabetes mellitus refers to a group of diseases that affect how your body uses blood sugar. The underlying cause of diabetes varies by type. But no matter what type of diabetes you have, it can lead to excess sugar in your blood. Too much sugar in your blood can lead to serious health problems.
The two types of chronic diabetes conditions are Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes can develop at any age, although it often appears during childhood or adolescence. Type 2 diabetes, which is more common, also can develop at any age, although it’s more common in people over 40. Prediabetes means you have a higher-than-normal blood sugar level, but it’s not yet high enough to be considered Type 2 diabetes.
You might gain weight during the menopausal transition and after menopause. The weight gain may require you to adjust your diabetes medication.
After menopause, hot flashes and night sweats can keep you up at night. In turn, the sleep deprivation can make it tougher to manage your blood sugar level.
Sugar Adds To Your Stress
Did you know that having a high blood glucose level is actually a stress on your body? High blood glucose increases your stress hormone cortisol. High cortisol reduces how much progesterone you can make which is likely to leave you with a hormone imbalance exacerbating many perimenopause symptoms:
- Youll likely experience heavier bleeds
- More irregularity with your cycle
- Worsening mood swings, anxiety, hot flushes and depression
Getting Support To Reduce Your Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes
Trying to eat well and keep active and looking after yourself along with lifes other responsibilities can feel like a mountain if you have distressing menopausal symptoms.
If thats the case, its sensible to contact your GP to talk about your options. You can also find out where to get more support on the NHS menopause page. You can also chat to one of our helpline advisors who can listen and support you.
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A Few Simple Dietary Changes
Because I was feeling rode hard and put up wet , I knew it was time to make some changes . I immediately started eating small meals spaced no more than 2 hours apart. If youre used to going long spaces of time between meals, eating frequently is difficult. I had to set my timer to remind myself to eat.
Within 24 hours of eating small meals throughout the day, my headache was gone. Shortly thereafter, the palpitations and handshakes also disappeared. My energy level started to return and I was feeling a lot better. Oh, and the night sweats, they disappeared after the first 24 hours. In other words, the symptoms that I would have attributed to menopause were not menopausal symptoms at all. It was the result of low blood sugar and inconsistent eating patterns.
How Can I Know How Much Sugar Is In A Product
Getting familiar with the nutrition labels on foods is key to understanding how nutritious a food is and how much sugar it contains. First, youll want to be looking at the ingredients list to see if there is any sugar in the first three ingredients. If there is, its likely to have quite high levels.
Next, youll need to look at the nutrition grid. Go down to the row that says carbohydrates of which sugars and go along to the column with the portion guide. This will tell you how many grams of sugar is in one portion of that food. Each 4g is equivalent to 1 teaspoon aim to keep within the 7-teaspoon allowance each day.
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Regulation Of Glucose In The Brain
Glucose is the essential nutrient for brain glucose metabolism making rapid, efficient delivery of glucose to the brain crucial. However, only a 2-min supply is maintained. Any activation of the neurons increases energy demands. Simple activation of neurons from resting states generates both increased glucose consumption in the brain and increased transport at the bloodbrain barrier to meet neuron energy needs. Intensive neuron activation, such as in demanding mental activities or either cognitive or psychological stress, further increases glucose demand.
The BBB maintains separation between the blood plasma, with its glucose concentration of 5 mmol/L, and the brain extracellular space, with glucose concentration of 1 mmol/L . Given the differential of glucose concentrations, the movement of glucose molecules from plasma to the brain interstitium is mediated by facilitated diffusion by the carrier protein GLUT1 in the plasma membranes of endothelial cells . GLUT1 mediates brain glucose uptake from the blood supply at the BBB through a neurobarrier coupling process which is proposed to be essential for hot flash physiology. This is one element of a dynamic process of brain glucose regulation which includes neurovascular, neurometabolic, and neurobarrier coupling .
How Can I Check My Blood Sugar Levels At Home
What Is Normal Blood Sugar are used extensively for diabetes, cancer, and stem cell therapy research.
If you have diabetes, you will have problems with elevated blood sugar levels.
Take the stairs, run errands Normal Blood Sugar on foot , keep that promise to your dog to If You Have High Blood Sugar Hot Flashes take Is 79 low blood sugar for diabetics him on a walk, and go for that weekend bike ride.
The American Diabetes Association suggests a woman should How does watermelon affect blood sugar drink only one alcoholic beverage per day, and they suggest no .
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Managing Diabetes During The Perimenopause
As oestrogen levels fall, your body can become less responsive to insulin and fluctuations in hormone levels during perimenopause mean some women experience rapid changes from high to low blood sugar levels for no apparent reason
Oestrogen helps protect the heart by allowing the blood vessels to widen. So higher blood pressure and higher cholesterol levels due to lower levels of oestrogen can be an effect of menopause.
And if you have diabetes, more weight particularly around your middle, higher blood pressure and smoking can increase your blood sugar levels.
Here are things you can do that can help manage diabetes during the perimenopause:
Signs You May Have Hypoglycemia
Many people – even those without diabetes – exhibit signs of low blood sugar. Read on for 5 subtle signs of hypoglycemia. Feeling suddenly weak or shaky is one of the better known signs of low blood sugar, but that doesnt mean its always easy to notice. Weakness, particularly in the arms or legs, or a feeling of being jittery or trembling could also mean its time to eat. Physical symptoms arent the only signs of low blood sugar emotional instability can also occur. In fact, if you suspect you have fluctuating blood sugar, your symptoms might include things such as feeling suddenly overwhelmed, frustrated, angry, irritated, or like you could burst into tears. Find yourself breaking into a cold sweat for no reason? Low blood sugar may be to blame. The stress on your body means that it has to work harder, and a cold sweat is a classic sign that your body is having to work too hard to function. Other symptoms might be a rapid or irregular heartbeat, or even blurred vision. Hypoglycemia can bring on feelings of nausea or extreme hunger. Traditionally, eating sugar helps raise blood sugar levels, but try to eat a balanced snack or meal soon afterward, to avoid a repeat sugar crash. When blood sugar is low , it can make you a little spacey. You may find yourself rambling, or others may have a tough time following your conversation. But slurred speech or confusion are more serious signs of dangerously low blood sugar, and should not be taken lightly.Continue reading > >
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How To Stop This Happening
So in this instance, it’s sometimes better to prepare before you go to bed. Now, we’re not talking a big meal, because we know eating late at night can stress your digestive system. It can really stress your liver, and that can keep you awake as well. But we’re looking at a nice little snack, maybe an hour to half an hour before you go to bed. So, again, you would be looking at small handful of dried fruit or some nuts or a little handful of seeds. It could be a little bit of plain organic bio-yogurt and add a small portion of fresh berries. Berries are great for releasing fruit sugars very, very slowly and into the bloodstream. Or you could even have something like an oat cake and peanut butter or nut butter. Don’t go for things like rice cakes or crackers, because they will break down very quickly and give you a quick sugar hit. So these really should be avoided especially at night. So, hopefully, you can try these ideas out and see how you get on with them. And, you know, let me know if you find just changing your snacks, and your meals, and maybe your evening snack to see if that helps you with your symptoms.