Back to Ask the Diabetes Team Ask the Diabetes Team

From Rhode Island, USA:

I've been plagued with recurring hypoglycemia for at least 20 years, have had three bouts of gestational diabetes, feel physically and mentally better when chubby than at "goal weight", and have had strange mental effects from my wild swings in blood glucose. The neurologist I've recently consulted about the mental anomalies asked if I'd ever been investigated for an insulinoma.

So, perhaps I've never had normoglycemia! I've always thought that the lows and highs of my blood glucose where a character flaw or a result of bad food choices and relative unwillingness to exercise. In a given day, like yesterday, my blood glucose ranged from 66-170 mg/dl [3.7-9.4 mmol/L]. I'm presently nine weeks pregnant and have gestational diabetes with diet and exercise alone.

Please tell me that my never having had normoglycemia (having had reactive hypoglycemia, unexplained hypoglycemia, gestational diabetes, and impaired glucose tolerance) is not a character flaw, but perhaps symptomatic of an abnormal pancreas. Do "normal" folks have even blood glucose throughout the day despite what they do? Oh, how I would love an answer that would explain a lifetime's misery!


This does not sound like a character flaw. If you are overweight, then you must make relatively more insulin than those who are not overweight. If this "thermostat" is not set ideally, then you could have some overshooting and undershooting. More than 95% of the time, appropriate meals and snacks, balanced for proper total calories and avoiding most fast acting carbohydrates will stop such swings and any associated symptoms.

If you really have blood glucose values up to the high 170s [mg/dl, 9.4 mmol/L], then you have insulin deficiency, at least relatively and/or some insulin resistance. You should be in touch with a diabetologist who understands these intricacies so that you can get proper advice individualized for you, whether or not you are pregnant or post-pregnancy, etc.


Original posting 29 Jun 2002
Posted to Diagnosis and Symptoms


  Back to Ask the Diabetes Team Return to the Top of This Page

Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:34
This Internet site provides information of a general nature and is designed for educational purposes only. If you have any concerns about your own health or the health of your child, you should always consult with a physician or other health care professional.

This site is published by T-1 Today, Inc. (d/b/a Children with Diabetes), a 501c3 not-for-profit organization, which is responsible for its contents. Our mission is to provide education and support to families living with type 1 diabetes.
By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use, Legal Notice, and Privacy Policy.
© Children with Diabetes, Inc. 1995-2018. Comments and Feedback.