Blood Sugar Changes When Quitting

Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

25 Nov 2001, 21:16 #11

Image For Shelley:

I noticed you changed your eating pattern to one that is more normal now. I thought you'd appeciate this article on the issue.
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John (Gold)
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

11 Feb 2002, 05:52 #12

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My prior recovery attempts were nightmares. As a smoker I almost always skipped breakfast, often skipped lunch and couldn't understand why most of my friends couldn't do it too. I do now. Nicotine wasn't acting as their spoon. I was also a big big caffeine drinker and had no idea that nicotine doubles the rate by which caffeine is eliminated from the bloodstream. I had no idea that continuing to drink the exact same amount of coffee each morning during quit attempts meant that my blood contained twice as much caffeine (see Caffeine tolerance changes after cessation). No wonder I was climbing every wall in sight!

If we keep our blood sugar levels stable, manage caffeine if necessary by reducing normal intake up to one-half (if you can handle a doubling of normal daily intake without symptoms then don't worry about this issue), and try not to be afraid of what can and should be the most wonderful awakening we've likely ever known, coming home to again meet the "real" you can be vastly easier than we ever dreamed possible! Nicotine dependency recovery is your loving gift to you! Embrace it, hold it close and protect it above all else. The next few minutes are all that matter and each is yours to command!

Breathe deep, hug hard, live long,

John
Last edited by John (Gold) on 01 Aug 2009, 11:22, edited 1 time in total.
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JoeDTexas GREEN
Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 18:59

17 May 2002, 20:10 #13

Could not agree more, if your a diabetic and kicking the habit, keep a real good eye on bgl, they could drop lower/faster than you might have previously experienced...

If you have problems keeping bgl in line, call your Dr. and discuss the situation with him/her, they will be thrilled to hear that you are quitting....Image
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John (Gold)
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

27 Jun 2002, 20:38 #14

None of us EVER skipped breakfast
or lunch while still smoking nicotine!
Nicotine, via adrenaline releases pumped stored fats into our blood, ensuring that we were always well fed! It was a deadly means of eating.
If you try going without delivering fuel to your body after quitting nicotine, you are likely to experience one or more unnecessary withdrawal symptoms associated with low blood sugar. Nicotine is no longer feeding you and unless you adjust your normal food intake out more evenly over your entire day you could make withdrawal far more challenging than need be. What follows is a blood sugar symptoms article from WebMD

Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar)

Symptoms

Hypoglycemia is not itself a disease but a condition that results from low blood sugar levels. The symptoms are not unique or specific to hypoglycemia; other conditions and illnesses have some of the same or similar symptoms. The symptoms a person experiences may vary from episode to episode and among different individuals. A doctor must carefully evaluate symptoms that may indicate hypoglycemia to be sure that some other condition is not causing them.
Low blood sugar can be mild, moderate, or severe. Increasingly severe symptoms appear as the blood glucose level falls. The most noticeable symptoms result from the effect of low blood sugar on the brain and nervous system.
Mild hypoglycemia
The initial symptoms appear as the body responds to the falling blood sugar levels by releasing glucagon, epinephrine (adrenaline), and other hormones. In normal individuals, blood glucose levels when fasting (between meals) are usually between 70 to 150 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).3, 4 The symptoms of mild low blood sugar usually develop when the blood sugar falls below 60 to 65 mg/dL. These may include:
  • Nausea; extreme hunger.
  • Feeling nervous or jittery.
  • Cold, clammy, wet skin; excessive sweating that is not caused by exercise.
  • A rapid heartbeat (tachycardia)
  • Numbness or tingling of the fingertips or lips.
  • Trembling.
Moderate hypoglycemia
If blood sugar levels continue to fall, the lack of adequate glucose begins to impair brain and nervous system functions. Additional symptoms appear that affect behavior and judgment. Symptoms usually develop when the blood sugar falls below 50 mg/dL. These may include:
  • Mood changes, such as irritability, anxiety, restlessness, or anger.
  • Confusion, difficulty in thinking, or inability to concentrate.
  • Blurred vision, dizziness, or headache.
  • Weakness, lack of energy.
  • Poor coordination.
  • Difficulty walking or talking, such as staggering or slurred speech.
  • Fatigue, lethargy, or drowsiness.
Note: A person experiencing moderate hypoglycemia may be too weak or confused to treat the low blood sugar and may need help.
Severe hypoglycemia
The symptoms of severe low blood sugar develop when blood sugar falls below 30 mg/dL. Symptoms may include:
  • Seizures or convulsions.
  • Loss of consciousness, coma.
  • Low body temperature (hypothermia).
Prolonged severe hypoglycemia can cause irreversible brain damage. If emergency medical treatment is not provided, severe hypoglycemia can be fatal. See the Topic Overview or Home Treatment section for links to information on emergency care for low blood sugar.
Note: The blood sugar levels given here are typical ones. However, actual measurements for normal blood sugar levels (euglycemia), and for mild, moderate and severe hypoglycemia, can vary from individual to individual. In some cases, symptoms may even occur when a person's blood sugar level makes a large drop from a high level into the normal range.
Some medications may interfere with whether symptoms of low blood sugar develop. These include beta-blockers, which are often used to treat heart conditions and high blood pressure.
WebMD Health
© 1995-2002, Healthwise, Incorporated, P.O. Box 1989, Boise, ID 83701.
All Rights Reserved.
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
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John (Gold)
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

28 Oct 2002, 05:49 #15

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Hunger!

A New Experience for Many !

If you're just arriving, this thread is VERY important and worth reading. Each hit of nicotine feed us via adrenaline releases of stored fats and sugars into our blood. Many of us lived in an unnatural feeding cycle where we consumed one massive meal each day and then used nicotine to release energy stored from it. Some of us rarely if ever experienced the onset of full blown hunger cravings and if we did they could be satisfied within seconds of that first hit of nicotine arriving in the brain. Normal people can't do that. They get hungry and have learned that it takes time to satisfy it.

As Joel teaches, it's important that we understand the time delay between eating food and our brain sensing that the amount of food we've eaten was sufficient to replenish our needs - about 20 minutes.

As Joel points out, if, because of nicotine constantly feeding us, we are not used to the natural period of hunger and attempt to satisfy it with a shovel instead of a slow slow spoon, we can devour an awful lot of groceries in those 20 minutes! None of us need to eat one calorie more than we did while smoking but we may need to learn to properly deal with hunger and we may need to learn to spread our normal calorie intake out more evenly over our entire day. It's really a learning experience.

If the food craves should arrive, the slower we eat and the greater amount of time passing between helpings, the fewer helpings you may find you need. Additionally, fully chewing each bite allows the mouth to add important enzymes that actually aid digestion.

But don't go overboard with eating or allow it to become an "aaah" replacement crutch for nicotine. Eating is a true species survival event and our brain dopamine pathways are stimulated when we anticipate eating or during the process of tasting and eating. It's food's "aaah" sensation. Nicotine takes the brain's survival event teacher hostage forcing users to believe that that next fix is as important to survival as eating. Yes, nicotine "aaah"s, food "aaah"s, nicotine craving, food cravings.

During the time needed for the brain to down-regulate nicotinicy-type receptor counts and restore natural dopamine pathway sensitivities (2 to 3 weeks) it isn't unusual to see quitters attempt to use extra food "aaah"s to attempt to replace missing nicotine "aaah"s. As you can imagine, living inside the refrigerator for two weeks can quickly add pounds. A bit of extra exercise may serve as a natural appetite suppressant. The hardest part of exercise is putting on our sneakers and stepping out the door. Baby steps to glory. The next few minutes are all that matter and each is doble.

After all these years of nicotine feeding us it can take a bit of practice learning how to feed ourselves properly again. What a wonderful problem to have!


Breathe deep, hug hard, live long!

John : )
Last edited by John (Gold) on 01 Aug 2009, 11:51, edited 2 times in total.
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GeorgieGirl GOLD
Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:03

29 Jan 2003, 08:12 #16

Hi everyone. I really think that I need to share my personal experience with low blood sugar with you all (especially you newbies!). I am nearly 3 months into my Quit and have experienced alot of ups and downs. I guess I had become rather confused as to why I was still experiencing symptoms similar to those that are experienced in the first 72 hours. I was pretty much in a constant state of crankiness, moody, depressed, restless and angry AND I am always so tired. There is also quite a bit of stress going on in my life around me. The point is - I guess I kept putting the symptoms I have been experiencing down to giving up smoking. I have been like this for a while, giving up smoking just unmasked the symptoms even more. The most important point is - that I have seen a doctor and have been properly diagnosed with Hypoglycemia. As John has outlined above - this is the "category" I fall under:

Moderate hypoglycemia
If blood sugar levels continue to fall, the lack of adequate glucose begins to impair brain and nervous system functions. Additional symptoms appear that affect behavior and judgment. Symptoms usually develop when the blood sugar falls below 50 mg/dL. These may include:
  • Mood changes, such as irritability, anxiety, restlessness, or anger.
  • Confusion, difficulty in thinking, or inability to concentrate.
  • Blurred vision, dizziness, or headache.
  • Weakness, lack of energy.
  • Poor coordination.
  • Difficulty walking or talking, such as staggering or slurred speech.
  • Fatigue, lethargy, or drowsiness.
As Joel and everyone has always said - we do not provide medical advice at this site, and for good reason. I think that it is REALLY important in your Quit NOT to blame everything on not-smoking, it does not really deserve any credit at all. As I have found out myself - I had an underlying medical condition. All that smoking did was mask it and probably make it worse!
Also, as Joel so wisely put it:
For people who are off for weeks, months, years or decades and who are cranky, nervous, depressed, angry, have sore throats, earaches, backaches, headaches, eye strains, poor vision, hearing problems, broken bones, have stubbed their toes, have financial concerns, job stresses, or any other extraordinary issues going on in their lives at the moment. Don't blame every feeling, bad or good in your life on the fact that you happened to have quit smoking. Life goes on without smoking and as the closing paragraph in this article states:
Life goes on without smoking. It is likely to go on longer and it is likely that you will be healthier at each and every stage than you would have been if you had continued smoking. Your life will continue to stay better and likely last long longer as long as you always remember to never take another puff!

Life DEFINITELY goes on. Newbies - please take heart and keep hold of your Quit. If anything out of the ordinary occurs - please seek medical advice. Lucky for me I did and now with the help of my doctor and a nutritionist - I am getting myself back on track - and I DO NOT NEED SMOKING to cope with things that life may throw at me from time to time.

Georgia
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Lyverbyrd
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:58

20 Jul 2003, 03:00 #17

This is a great thread for me as a diabetic.


I smoked from the age of 23 (as a full timer....you know...) and was diagnosed with diabetes at 27. So all my diabetic life I've been a smoker, and now I no longer smoke, I'm having to relearn how to deal with my diabetes, how to recognise the swing into hypoglycaemia, because it feels COMPLETELY different now.



I'm learning so much! Thank you. Image
Last edited by Lyverbyrd on 01 Aug 2009, 11:56, edited 1 time in total.
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Joel
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

21 Jul 2003, 06:59 #18

Hello Paula:


It is crucial that you recognize the risks associated with smoking as a diabetic. The two risk factors are a very dangerous combination. Read the post Smoking and Circulation, you will see how many of the risk factors faced by diabetes are also conditions exacerbated by smoking. To minimize your risks with your diabetes stay on top of your blood sugar through the diet and medications regime worked out with your doctor and to eliminate the compounding risks of smoking just always remember to never take another puff!
Joel
Last edited by Joel on 26 Feb 2009, 19:35, edited 1 time in total.
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kattatonic1 gold4
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

12 Apr 2004, 19:40 #19

I think this information saved my life!

During all my failed quits I ate as I did while I smoked. Consequently, now I think a majority of "the quitting jitters" I had back in the failing days were really blood sugar issues. This time, armed with fresh juice and eating small but several times a day, I got through those early weeks as easily as I think you can get through them. The information about caffeine was also paramount for me.

Educate yourself & then NTAP! We're looking forward to you joining us here at Freedom... and your life awaits!

~ Kay ~
Celebrating 3 Months, 20 Days, 2 Hours and 9 Minutes of Freedom.
Forsaking 2222 doses of poison has liberated $714.23 and 7 Days and 17 Hours of my life.
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ButterfliesareSilver
Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 18:59

10 May 2004, 23:12 #20

This article provided me with the information and education to make it 72 hours. I never knew ANYTHING about what nicotine did to me until I quit.

This article is, for me, the tip of the iceberg in my quitting toolbox. I actually Googled "alieviate dizzziness quitting smoking" and this little life saver showed up and my journey to Freedom began.

BB Bronze plus WOW!
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