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August 2, 1999

Diagnosis and Symptoms

Question from Sacramento, California, USA:

I eat boxes of uncooked corn starch. I have not been able to find a doctor to isolate my problem. However, I continue to gain weight. Information I've read over the Internet seems to link it with diabetes. Can you offer any assistance?

Answer:

My first question is, do you have diabetes or impaired blood glucose levels?

Cornstarch is sometimes used before going to bed as part of a bedtime snack in those with type 1 diabetes. This can help to prevent low blood glucose overnight. It is not very palatable, so is often given in the form of commercially available snack bars.

If you do not have diabetes and are consuming boxes of cornstarch, keep in mind that it certainly does have calories, so that may very well result in weight gain, plus it probably ties up the absorption of some nutrients.

LSF