What Is Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar) And What Are Its Symptoms?

Dr. Saudek answers the question: 'What Is Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar)?'

ByABC News
November 9, 2007, 11:44 AM

— -- Question: What is hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and what are its symptoms?

Answer: Hypoglycemia is low blood sugar. The numbers are generally under 60, sometimes under 50, or even lower, but the symptoms are quite varied. Most people classically get shakiness, sweatiness, rapid heartbeat, the feeling of sudden hunger, and sometimes there's a change in your mental acuity, whether you're thinking exactly normally, whether you're having trouble understanding or feeling sort of a otherworldliness, or feeling of just being detached.

So there are a lot of different symptoms of hypoglycemia, and the way to really know if your hypoglycemia is occurring is to test your blood sugar and see if it's actually low, because as you can tell, the symptoms are non-specific -- you may be anxious, you may be nervous, you may be wondering if you're low -- and so you really ought to be able to check your own blood sugar and tell yourself, "Yes, this symptom means I am low, or this symptom does not necessarily mean I'm low, the blood sugar is in a normal or high range."

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