Blood Sugar 101

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Welcome to Blood Sugar 101! Scroll down to see more topics, then click on the Drugs, Diet, Diagnosis, and Complications Menu tabs to learn more.

Site Summary: Start Reading Here to Read This Site in A Logical Order

I know your time is limited, and this site is very big--90,000 words at last count--so here's a quick rundown of what you'll find in its pages. The emphasis is on teaching you how to bring your blood sugars down to the level that peer reviewed research has shown will prevent complications. The statements you'll find here are not just opinions.... more

How to Lower Your Blood Sugar

Over the past decade and a half thousands of people with Type 2 diabetes have dramatically lowered their blood sugar using this very simple technique which was first published on the newsgroup. Unlike most other strategies you may have encountered, this one does not tell you what to eat. Instead it teaches you how the meals... more

You Did NOT Eat Your Way to Diabetes: The REAL Causes

Don't fall for the toxic myth that you caused your diabetes by reckless overeating. While people with Type 2 diabetes often are seriously overweight, there is accumulating evidence that their overweight is a symptom, not the cause of the process that leads to Type 2 Diabetes.

Even so, it is likely that you've been told that you... more

Obesity Doesn't Cause Diabetes--Diabetes Genes Cause Obesity

Scientists have discovered that people don't get Type 2 Diabetes unless several important genes that regulate blood sugar are damaged. Now it's time to explore how this damage causes the obesity so often found in people with diabetes. This research will help you understand why obesity is a symptom of Type 2 diabetes, not its cause. Common wisdom,... more

What is a Normal Blood Sugar?

The term "blood sugar" refers to the concentration of glucose, a simple, sugar, that is found in a set volume of blood. In the U.S. it is measured in milligrams per deciliter, abbreviated as mg/dl. In most of the rest of the world it is measured in millimoles per liter, abbreviated as mmol/L.

The concentration of glucose in our blood changes... more

Why Lowering A1c Below 6.0% Is Not Dangerous

Over the past year I have heard from a horrifying number of people with diabetes whose doctors have reproached them for lowering their A1cs below 6% and warned them that lowering A1c to that level will give them heart attacks.

This is obscenely bad advice. But there is a reason why so many doctors are giving it. It goes back to a study... more

Healthy Blood Sugar Targets

If you have been told your blood sugar is higher than normal, you may wonder what blood sugar levels you should be aiming for to ensure ongoing health. Doctors and organizations like the American Diabetes Association suggest various blood sugar targets, but before you adopt any such target, it is worth remembering that the point of setting and... more

The 5% Club: They Normalized Their Diabetic Blood Sugars and So Can You!

If it worries you to learn that the blood sugar levels most doctors say are "good control" for people with diabetes are high enough to cause all of the classic diabetes complications you've come to the right page. No matter how high your blood sugar is right now there's no reason to panic. Using a combination of the technique you will learn more

Research Connecting Organ Damage with Blood Sugar Level

The studies you will read below, some of which are not cited in the AACE guidelines, make a cogent case that post-meal blood sugars of 140 mg/dl (7.8 mmol/L) and higher and fasting blood sugars over 100 mg/dl (5.6 mmol/L) when found in association with those higher than normal post-meal blood sugars, cause both permanent organ damage and the... more

Do People with Type 2 Always Deteriorate?

The single most dangerous idea you are likely to encounter after getting a diabetes diagnosis is the belief that science has proven, beyond a doubt, that no matter what you do, your Type 2 Diabetes will get worse.

Your doctors probably believe this. Though they may give lip service to the idea that you can control your disease through diet,... more

Testing the FreeStyle Libre Flash Gluose Monitoring System

I am reporting on my trial of the FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System that Abbott, the manufacturer, sent me for review. Disclosure: I received the $70 reader and two $40 sensors for free. I have subsequently filled a prescription and paid for three more sensors myself.

To read my reports in sequence, visit this blog... more

Diabetes Drugs - Quick Summary

>The table below summarizes important information about the most commonly prescribed drugs for Type 2 Diabetes. Links to detailed discussions of these drugs and the research supporting the statements below can be found by scrolling to the bottom of this page.

Insulin for Type 2 diabetes is discussed separately more

Blood Sugar Throughout the Day - for Normal People and Those with Diabetes

Most of us have heard the term blood sugar bandied around enough that we think we know what it means, but few of us really understand the complexity of the system that makes a steady supply of fuel available to our cells around the clock.

The basic facts are these: All animals have a small amount of a simple sugar called glucose floating... more

How Blood Sugar Control Works--And How It Stops Working

To understand what happens as your blood sugar deteriorates from normal to pre-diabetes, and finally, to full-fledged diabetes you first need to understand how blood sugar control works in a normal body. The most important factor here is the role played by special cells called beta cells. These tiny cells are scattered through an organ... more

The Patterns in Which Diabetes Develops

If you've been diagnosed with prediabetes or impaired glucose tolerance, or if your fasting blood sugar is higher than normal, or if you have a family history of diabetes, you may wonder what your real risk is of developing full-fledged diabetes. Several high quality medical studies have answered this question. These were studies that looked at... more

High Post-Meal Blood Sugars and High Normal A1cs Predict Heart Disease

If you need any more motivation to pursue normal blood sugars consider this:Heart attack risk more than doubles at blood sugar levels considered to be "prediabetic." Indeed, a good case could be made that higher than normal blood sugar levels which only reach the prediabetic range most doctors ignore are the biggest risk factor for heart... more

Why Is Blood Sugar Highest in the Morning?

Many people with diabetes find that their fasting blood sugar first thing in the morning is the hardest blood sugar to control. In addition, they find that if they eat the same food for breakfast as they do for lunch or dinner they will see a much higher blood sugar number when testing after breakfast than they see at the other meals.

The... more

Painless Blood Sugar Testing

If you learned how to test your blood sugar in the hospital or from a nurse in your doctor's office who doesn't themselves have diabetes, you may have been taught the wrong technique for testing and may be causing yourself unnecessary pain.

Here are some tips about how to test painlessly drawn from my own experience and that of people who... more

Diabetes at the Hospital or Nursing Home -- How to Protect Yourself

If you have diabetes and are forced to go to a hospital, emergency room, or nursing home for any reason at all, you may find yourself plunged into a situation where well-intentioned but ignorant medical professionals do all they can to destroy your blood sugar control.

Because none of us know when we may be the victim of an accident or... more

Diabetes on a Budget

Diabetes is expensive. Test strips, drugs, and food that doesn't raise your blood sugar all cost money, but for a lot of us, the money to pay for these necessities has become hard to find. If you are finding yourself in a crunch here are a few ideas that may help.

Test Strips
If you don't have insurance coverage test strips... more

Frequently Asked Questions

These are some of the questions visitors to this site most often ask.
  • When is the best time to test my blood sugar?

    Because it is post-meal blood sugars that most greatly stress your beta cells, the best time to test your blood sugar is the time, after eating, when blood sugars are the highest. For most people this will be... more

Do You Have a Good Doctor?

There is one often overlooked factor that can save you or someone you love from a future filled with amputations, failing vision, and dialysis: a family doctor who keeps up-to-date on diabetes treatment.

Not all doctors do. In fact, quite a few doctors out there got their training in diabetes care in medical school decades ago, and the only... more

When Your Doctor Isn't Helpful

More and more I am hearing from people whose doctors refuse to prescribe them the safe, effective drugs they need to regain normal blood sugars. They are told that there is no need to lower A1c below 7%. If they are over 60, they are told that they don't even need to keep their A1cs in the 7% range. Some are told they can only have prescriptions... more

Jenny Ruhl's Books

Jenny Ruhl's books include full-length books that are available in both paperback and e-book versions and Short Reads, which are brief e-books designed for people who don't have time to read a full-length book but need immediate help with problem solving. These books make fine gifts for friends and family who need help with their blood sugar... more

Helpful Books and Nutritional Software

Below you will find several books, apps, and gizmos that we recommend to supplement the information found on this site. If you know of other diabetes-related books, apps and other products that add value to the information on this site and which are in line with the philosophy expressed here, let us know. We are always open to your suggestions.... more

Download The Lower Your Blood Sugar Flyer

Thousands of people online have learned how to lower their blood sugar by cutting back on their carbohydrates. You've seen some of their testimonials on The 5% Club Page on this site.

Unfortunately, though, most people with diabetes aren't online, especially those who have been... more

Blood Sugar/A1c Calculator

This formula used by this calculator was derived from data provided by people wearing continuous glucose monitors. It is more accurate than older formulas like the DCCT formula and the Nathan Formula.

Our A1c/Average Blood Glucose calculator is found HERE

The formula used in this... more

Finding Support Online

It is a lot easier to work on your diabetes when you have the help of other people who have to deal with the same issues as you do, day in and day out. That is why finding support can be very important. Online support has the benefit that it is there for you 24/7. It keeps you in touch with the latest research findings as well as exposing you to... more

Start Your Own Effective Type 2 Diabetes Support Group

Many of the following ideas have been used effectively in online support groups for many years. They definitely work. I've combined these ideas with the health support group structure used for many decades, very effectively, by La Leche League (LLL).

LLL is an excellent model for diabetes activists, because they succeeded very well in... more

Our Privacy Policy

We do not collect any personal information about any visitors to our site. We do not run ads that rely on tracking information from other sources, nor do we host any hidden features that collect data about you for predatory organizations like Facebook.

We use cookies to collect information via Google Analytics that tells us how many... more

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