Dysglycemia refers to any abnormality in serum (blood) glucose stability. This includes people with perfectly “normal” blood tests. It is a metabolic disorder primarily involving the hormone system. It is different than a bad habit, which can also cause weight gain. When a person changes a bad habit, they see steady weight loss results. When a person with dysglycemia changes their diet or exercises more, they don’t. It is because they have a fuel regulation disorder.
Diabetes is a rigid diagnostic term often based on specific lab values. Most doctors will not address your Dysglycemia until it is advanced (at which point it is called Diabetes). Dysglycemia is Pre-Diabetes.
Symptoms of Dysglycemia: ► cravings (for carbohydrate foods/sweets) ► weight gain ► fatigue or fluctuating energy levels ► poor concentration ► mood swings ► disturbed sleep ► headaches
Advanced Symptoms: ► elevated cholesterol and triglycerides ► low sex drive ► urinating at night ► tired after eating ► swollen ankles ► shaky/moody if hungry ► elevated HbA1c (>5.6) ► hot flash/night sweats ► abnormal thyroid function
Dysglycemia affects the entire hormone system as well as the major organs such as the heart, liver, and kidneys in addition to the blood vessels and nerves. It is, perhaps, the most costly modern day disease pattern we face.
Treatment: ► evaluation of each patient based on individual presentation (hormone system is always involved but which aspect is causing the problem; e.g. pancreas function, liver function, thyroid function) ► treat related systems with greatest dysfunction (functional conditions are sub-clinical meaning that they are not yet pathological but still negatively affect other systems which lead to disease; e.g. digestive problems affect the pancreas which produces both digestive enzymes and hormones to manage blood sugar levels) ► treatment for functional conditions is rarely successful using drugs as medications do not repair function; best treatment strategies involve lifestyle changes through diet and exercise, clinical nutrition, and medical herbs (individualized) ► dietary reduction of foods that contain high amounts of carbohydrates is an essential component for treating dysglycemia (many options; paleo, RESET Food Plan, portion control, etc. - must keep total carbohydrate intake below 40-80 grams per day depending on the individual’s needs)
You can start with the dietary changes (lowering carbohydrate intake). For some people, this is enough. If you hit a wall, or want to get it right from the beginning, then consider making an appointment with a clinical nutritionist or a doctor that practices functional medicine.