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NEED HELP dr. put me on metformin

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  • NEED HELP dr. put me on metformin

    Hey everyone,

    You guys have been such a source of information and encouragement for me. I really NEED your input.
    I did paleo about 2 years ago. I lost alot of weight very fast from being in ketosis and eating strict. However, I started losing hair and not feeling well. So, I added in some carbs like corn and beans. My hair loss stopped and so did my weight loss. Then I went through a stressful year with a sick child and gained back 30 pounds of a 65pound loss. I was eating around 150gr. of carbs a day.

    Recently, I just haven't felt well. I am gluten, dairy, soy, and nightshade free. I figured that I was eating to many carbs even if it is sweet potatoes, fruit, coconut milk products, etc.... I checked my blood sugar level the other night and it was 260!!!!! This was after eating 3 thin corn tortillas that equal 22 carbs, 3gr. fiber. I wrapped turkey with mayo in them. I immediately went for a walk to get my blood sugar down and down it came! It went to 108 in 20 minutes! Now, I know that sounds great but it made me feel terrible.

    Over the next few days I cut back on the carbs but then struggled with low blood sugars. I had this problem 2 years ago after being paleo for 6 months. My fasting blood sugar level drawn at the lab was 43!!! This is why I added in carbs. Now I see that it does matter what carbs to add in.

    Over the last week my blood sugar would not stabalize so I finally went to the doctor because I could not get it under control. The doc sent me for blood work. My A1c came back 5.7 which is slightly elevated and my TSH was 3.98 which is a little off for me. I feel better at 3.

    I have PCOS, metabolic x syndrome, hypothyroid. I can not take armour thyroid, I have a reaction to it. I only respond to synthroid.

    My doc wants me to take metformin 500mg 3 times a day. I did start it because I was so desperate to get the blood sugar balanced but Metformin makes me feel terrible.

    I've decided to get back to the Paleo way of eating. Here is where I need your help. What do I do about the low blood sugar? Should I eat a little fruit or starchy veggies at each meal???
    I don't do well eating to often. 4 times a day seems to be best for me.

    I would appreciate any feed back.

  • #2
    see if you can get the extended release version

    if you weren't able to keep your sugar level under control with diet then i'd go with the meds for now
    yeah you are

    Baby if you time travel back far enough you can avoid that work because the dust won't be there. You're too pretty to be working that hard.


    • #3
      Is the med leveling you out? Get that done first. Then the only suggestion i have is to start experimenting. Maybe start at 75 grams a day and see what that does. I would go with limited fruit, maybe berries and apples, lots of dark green veggies, cauliflower, peppers if you like them, cabbage, etc. Lots of fat and moderate protein. Do a food and BSS journal for a few weeks to find out what combo works for you. I am sorry! How frustrating it all can be.
      You know all those things you wanted to do: You should go do them.

      Age 48
      height 5'3
      SW 215 lbs
      CW 180 lbs (whole foods/primal eating)
      LW 172 lbs
      GW 125ish lbs


      • #4
        My SIL, who was just diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at the age of 27 (yeah, it was a shock), found that it took her a while to figure out which foods triggered a high blood sugar reading and which didn't. It really wasn't cut and dry; she would be like, "Okay, (food x) has only 10g of carbs, I'm going to eat this instead of (food y) that has 15g carbs..." and then the lower-carb one would send her blood sugar spiraling, and the higher-carb one wouldn't. She still hasn't nailed down a pattern to her trigger foods, she just knows what she can and can't eat.

        The one thing she has found to be almost foolproof in keeping her numbers even is, if she has ANY carbohydrate, it has to be paired with an equivalent amount of fat. Protein doesn't work to keep things level, just fat. So, like, she can have a small scoop of full-fat gelato without spiking her numbers, but having a bit of pancake with her eggs caused a big spike. She's also found that fruit and grains (even with fat) are huge culprits for a sugar spike, whereas potatoes (along with some fat) in small amounts can be okay. Since her diagnosis, she's wrestled with trying to continue her grainy vegetarian ways, but gave up within a month and is now eating strict Paleo with dairy (she has not found that dairy spikes her blood sugar), and her blood sugar has really evened out.

        So for you, I'd say try increasing your fat intake and see if it helps keep your blood sugar more even. A sustained reading, even if it's on the high side, is better than massive spikes and drops.

        I'm sorry that the Metformin is making you feel crappy. IMO it's a pretty cool medication (biochemically speaking). And I'd much rather be on Metformin than insulin.


        • #5
          Keep a clear line between carbs and grains.
          There are plenty of good carbs without eating GMO corn products.
          Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
          Don't forget to play!


          • #6
            Thank you everyone!

            Heartseeker, I found that beans (any kind) DO NOT cause a blood sugar spike, but sweet potato does. Both of those carbs were couples with protein and fat. I tried sweet potato fries which are higher fat...... no blood sugar spike. A banana won't spike my sugar but 2 little plums sure did!

            Godiva dark cocolate with almonds didn't faze my blood sugar! Now there is something to be HAPPY about!

            I'm so thankful that you mentioned the fat because I've noticed that a higher fat meal even with a corn muffin(not good I know) didn't cause a spike, but 3 corn tortillas which were lower carb did.

            Do you think beans would be ok to eat a few times a week? I need a plan I can live with. No eating dairy because of an allergy and not eating nightshade vegetables because of an autoimmune response makes meal planning difficult.


            • #7
              I can't eat any kind of rice, oatmeal, quinoa, or other grain. They ALL make me sick and spike my blood sugar.


              • #8
                Metformin takes several weeks to get used to no matter how strict your diet. You will need to experiment with how you take it. A lot of people like taking it with food, but I have to take it on an empty stomach. It can take a while to figure out which foods trigger spikes too. Mine does not spike much from regular table sugar, but my blood sugar goes sky high after a potato. Part of the problem is reaching for a carb every time you dip low. That is just causing a viscous cycle of swinging up and down.

                As for feeling like crud on metformin, I suggest you google "metformin manifesto". It contains some helpful tricks and a list of foods that trigger "met gut" (diarrhea ). There are certain things like eggs or lettuce that you do not want to your pill with.


                • #9
                  In the past, I have been a featured speaker for GlaxoSmithKline on the subject of Ty II Diabetes. Now obviously I do not know your whole medical history but with an Hgb-A1c of 5.7 on initial presentation, I would not have recommended medication at this juncture. I would hope that with exercise and a diet focused on smaller more frequent high protein meals with low glycemic index carbs that you could avoid the need for medication for the forseeable future while also controlling any hypoglycemia.

                  Wish you the best!


                  • #10
                    Thank you all so much!


                    • #11
                      I just came across this Robb Wolf article on Merformin, have you read it?

                      Paleo Diet, Inflammation and Metformin


                      • #12
                        A1C of 5.7 is not elevated.


                        • #13
                          Eyeofround, The lab flagged my results. 5.7 is considered an average blood sugar of 125. This is higher than they would like.


                          • #14
                            Your lab must use very different values. It's usually considered that anything below 6.0 is NOT diabetic or even pre-, but levels in the 6 range are pre-diabetic. Usually doctors don't medicate until the A1C is 7.0 or above.

                            I know that the first priority should be managing your blood sugar, but you mention that you're hypothyroid and taking supplemental hormones (Sythroid). Taking these hormones always suppresses the TSH, so someone who is optimally medicated will have TSH at 1.0 or slightly below. A TSH of 3.0 or above suggests that you are seriously undermedicated.

                            Thyroid hormones regulate many body functions, and it's possible that this may be the source of your wide-ranging blood glucose numbers.


                            • #15
                              I am diabetic and hypothyroid. I am on synthroid and it works for me. I feel good when my TSH is around 1.2 to 1.5. Anything higher and I feel like death warmed over. I have been diabetic or prediabetic for seven years. I was put on metformin about five years ago. My A1c is currently 6.2 but when it was prescribed I was around 5.7. PCOS is another reason Metformin is prescribed to improve symptoms aside from diabetes. Extended release is much easier on my insides. I am also a person that feels the changes in blood sugar and strongly desires very tight control so I don't feel like crap. I am a fifth generation diabetic with nearly all my siblings and about 1/3 of my cousins being diabetic. The genetic cards were not in my favor and I was diagnosed at 35.