A friend of mine with CF who lives in South Africa has a history of severe gastroparesis (delayed gastric emptying) and low stomach acid, which (alongside her Crohn's, CFRD, and removal of her terminal ileum, ascending colon, and gallbladder years ago) has caused her significant digestive distress and inability to digest anything other than her extremely regimented liquid diet. For years Paula's gastroparesis has been so bad that if she doesn't eat precisely the right thing in precise quantities at precisely the right time of day, her stomach will not empty, which puts pressure on her diaphragm and lungs and can cause significant respiratory distress and vomiting. She is a great researcher and has tried many, many things to help this situation, but nothing had yet made a significant dent on these distressing symptoms (including multiple motility drugs). I've tried to strategize with Paula to figure out what was causing or had caused the issue, and secondly what do we do about it now. After a lot of trial and error, it seems we've found two things that have made a big difference in her life: lecithin and artichoke leaf (Cynara scolymus).
I've been experimenting with taking cinnamon to control my blood sugar for years. And yet, I never really did enough controlled experimentation to get to the bottom of how it could help me, especially with my reactive hypoglycemia in the morning, until now.
I have discovered that if I eat more than 25 grams of carbs for breakfast, I will have a reactive hypoglycemic reaction about 1-2 hrs afterward. I contemplate why this might be happening in a previous blog post. But regardless of why it was happening, I was not able to prevent a reactive hypoglycemic reaction unless I ate less than 25 g of carbs for my first meal of the day. Carb restriction is a reasonable approach, but sometimes carbs (like an apple with nut butter or a fruit-nut bar) are the most convenient thing to eat quickly before I start my morning treatments. So recently I've been experimenting with eating about 30 g of carbs for breakfast and taking different combinations of cinnamon and insulin to see what happens.
Mica is a clinical herbalist specializing in cystic fibrosis, severe respiratory diseases, nutrition and digestion, diabetes and blood sugar disregulation, and immune disregulation. Through their own personal experiences with chronic illness, they are passionate about empowering people to take charge of their own health with natural, holistic, and integrative approaches. Please ask questions or share what's worked for you!
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