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  #1  
Old 05-23-2010, 06:46 AM
newcrasher newcrasher is offline
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How high could a non-diabetic get their blood sugar?

I have diabetes that is under great control with only diet and exercise. My last a1c was 5.5. I check my sugar after most meals and it is almost always in the normal range. I really restrict my carb intake, especially simple sugars. I can almost convince myself that I don't have diebetes.

But when I splurge I can get some high readings.

So I was thinking, how high can a non-diabetic get their sugar if they binged on a meal of honeybuns, pixie stix, and Jolt Cola?

Would their body make the necessary adjustments to keep blood sugar in the normal range or would it go high for a while?
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  #2  
Old 05-23-2010, 07:21 AM
Athena Athena is offline
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What, you don't stab the non-diabetic people around you and check their sugars? It's the only fun part of being diabetic!

My husband checks his from time to time. 99% of the time, it's between 95 and 105, even after lots of sugar. Once, though, after a huge donut or big piece of cake or something, we saw 160. It was back down around 100 within a few minutes.

My aunt was 139 when I checked her after eating M&Ms.

Other than that, almost always right around 100, give or take 10 points.

My husband's also checked after strenuous bike rides, when he gets the feeling that non-diabetics always describe as "low blood sugar." I know, I used to say the same thing. He's been convinced he'd be in the 60s, but no, he's always right around 100.
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Old 05-23-2010, 07:24 AM
AWB AWB is offline
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Congrats on the diabetes control. Mine isn't so (Type I).

Empirical story here:

On my last visit home after I got diabetes, my sister was worried about her blood sugar. They all had had some sort of desert, and my sister had had coffee w/ cream and sugar. I volunteered my meter for her to test. Her level was 119 (very good). But me, without any natural insulin production, shoot up 50 points each just 1 hotdog (they have 3-5 g of sugar in them).
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Old 05-23-2010, 07:43 AM
Bijou Drains Bijou Drains is offline
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Sometimes before people are diagnosed as diabetic they can have a high level for a while and still not realize it. In my case I knew something was wrong since I was always thirsty for a week and when I went to the Dr. my level was 350. I knew a lot of thirst was a diabetes symptom so I was not surprised at my diagnosis.
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Old 05-23-2010, 07:44 AM
Hari Seldon Hari Seldon is online now
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My doctor says he has seen readings over 15 mmoles/l which corresponds to around 275 mg/dl (the latter being the way it is measured in the US. (You make the conversion by multiplying by 18.)
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  #6  
Old 05-23-2010, 08:11 AM
Martiju Martiju is offline
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15?!! I was diagnosed with a reading of 33. Even now I have some days when 15 would be low!
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Old 05-23-2010, 08:23 AM
KarlGauss KarlGauss is offline
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How high could a non-diabetic get their blood sugar?

By definition, if your sugar goes over 200 mg/dl (11 mmol/L) and you have symptoms such as thirst and frequent urination, you have diabetes. In other words, any "non-diabetic" whose sugar ever exceeds 200 may well already have diabetes.
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  #8  
Old 05-23-2010, 02:19 PM
Leo Bloom Leo Bloom is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newcrasher View Post
I have diabetes that is under great control with only diet and exercise. My last a1c was 5.5. [snip]
Sheesh. Congratulations. (Type II here.)
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  #9  
Old 05-23-2010, 07:40 PM
Qadgop the Mercotan Qadgop the Mercotan is offline
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To elaborate on KarlGauss' pithy summary:

The Diagnostic Criteria for Diabetes are as follows:

A. If your random serum glucose is over 200 mg/dl and you have symptoms such as polyuria, nocturia, or polydipsia, you have diabetes.

B. If your fasting serum glucose exceeds 126 mg/dl on 2 different days, you have diabetes.

C. If your postprandial glucose (2 hours post meal) is over 200 mg/dl, you have diabetes.

D. If your oral glucose tolerance test (ingesting 75 grams of glucose and getting your glucose checked 2 hours later) results in a serum glucose over 200 mg/dl, you have diabetes.

Last edited by Qadgop the Mercotan; 05-23-2010 at 07:41 PM..
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  #10  
Old 05-23-2010, 07:50 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qadgop the Mercotan View Post
To elaborate on KarlGauss' pithy summary:

The Diagnostic Criteria for Diabetes are as follows:

A. If your random serum glucose is over 200 mg/dl and you have symptoms such as polyuria, nocturia, or polydipsia, you have diabetes.

B. If your fasting serum glucose exceeds 126 mg/dl on 2 different days, you have diabetes.

C. If your postprandial glucose (2 hours post meal) is over 200 mg/dl, you have diabetes.

D. If your oral glucose tolerance test (ingesting 75 grams of glucose and getting your glucose checked 2 hours later) results in a serum glucose over 200 mg/dl, you have diabetes.
That's really dull, I'm glad Jeff Foxworthy went in a different direction.
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  #11  
Old 05-23-2010, 10:13 PM
Ca3799 Ca3799 is offline
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I have seen BS in the 600's a couple of times.

One- a guy who came to the clinic thinking he had a urinary tract infection because he couldn't ride the bus home without having to get off to pee, and another- a diabetic pregnant woman who was non compliant with diet/meds.
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  #12  
Old 05-24-2010, 07:32 AM
Martiju Martiju is offline
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Originally Posted by Martiju View Post
15?!! I was diagnosed with a reading of 33. Even now I have some days when 15 would be low!
Sent this from my phone - then realised I'd not explained myself. My point is that (as is now said later in the thread) if you're talking about levels of around 15, that would suggest you are not non-diabetic!
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  #13  
Old 05-24-2010, 09:39 AM
Lanzy Lanzy is offline
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I don't know if it works on non-diabetics, but I took my blood sugar after getting a cortisone shot in my knee and it spiked at 457! This is why my Dr. won't give me shots in both knees on the same day, he makes me wait 30 days.
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  #14  
Old 05-24-2010, 10:03 AM
WhyNot WhyNot is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qadgop the Mercotan View Post
D. If your oral glucose tolerance test (ingesting 75 grams of glucose and getting your glucose checked 2 hours later) results in a serum glucose over 200 mg/dl, you have diabetes.
Have you ever, just for shits 'n' giggles, taken someone's BS just after the glucose load? I'm wondering what we could get it to spike to before that 2 hour wait is over (as, if I'm reading it correctly is the OP). Surely there's some small span of time when the glucose is in the blood and the insulin hasn't whisked it away to the intracellular space yet.
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  #15  
Old 05-24-2010, 10:18 AM
Mama Zappa Mama Zappa is offline
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Originally Posted by Lanzy View Post
I don't know if it works on non-diabetics, but I took my blood sugar after getting a cortisone shot in my knee and it spiked at 457! This is why my Dr. won't give me shots in both knees on the same day, he makes me wait 30 days.
Wow! How long was the reading in that neighborhood and did you feel any different while it was that high?

I've had a high (130+) reading when on *oral* steroids... so much for local ones not having the same effect! That 130+ was long before I was in the same time zone as diabetic. Anyway, steroids do affect blood sugar even for non-diabetics.

Not sure whether I qualify as diabetic now, actually... I had one glucose reading 150+ while quite ill last winder, followed a few weeks later by an A1C of 6.1, which has since normalized (and the glucose that day was 107); I'm not being treated by anything other than a little weight loss.

Last edited by Mama Zappa; 05-24-2010 at 10:19 AM..
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  #16  
Old 05-24-2010, 10:26 AM
Mama Zappa Mama Zappa is offline
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Originally Posted by KarlGauss View Post
By definition, if your sugar goes over 200 mg/dl (11 mmol/L) and you have symptoms such as thirst and frequent urination, you have diabetes. In other words, any "non-diabetic" whose sugar ever exceeds 200 may well already have diabetes.
Nobody yet has answered the OP's question though - say you set Jamie and Adam to chow down on a big bowlful of Chocolate Frosted Sugar Bombs washed down with a big swig of Karo syrup: you'd expect their blood sugar to spike once that hits the stomach and bloodstream, then as the pancreas does its job, you'd expect it to start dropping reasonably fast, right?

So how high would you expect it to go over what time frame, and what sort of curve would you expect it to follow as it decreases?

All this assumes someone who does *not* have the other symptoms (thirst, etc.).
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  #17  
Old 05-24-2010, 10:50 AM
Athena Athena is offline
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Originally Posted by Mama Zappa View Post
Wow! How long was the reading in that neighborhood and did you feel any different while it was that high?
I'm not Lanzy, but I can put in my 2 cents on this one. My highest recorded reading was in the 450s, and I have reason to believe pre-diagnosis that I was often that high or higher (my first A1c was 11.5, which roughly equates to an average of 283. Given that, and the amount of sugar & carbs I was eating pre-diagnosis, I'd be highly surprised if I wasn't hitting 450 or higher quite often.)

How'd I feel? Fine. I had no symptoms, other than some weight loss, and an extreme craving for sugary food.

That said, I think that was because I was used to being that high all the time. Nowadays, with my A1c around 5.1 (which equates to an average blood sugar of about 100) if I get over about 200, I start to feel weird. My eyes and head start to feel "tight", if that makes sense, and I get a little headache-y.
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Old 05-24-2010, 10:51 AM
Athena Athena is offline
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Originally Posted by Mama Zappa View Post
Nobody yet has answered the OP's question though - say you set Jamie and Adam to chow down on a big bowlful of Chocolate Frosted Sugar Bombs washed down with a big swig of Karo syrup: you'd expect their blood sugar to spike once that hits the stomach and bloodstream, then as the pancreas does its job, you'd expect it to start dropping reasonably fast, right?

So how high would you expect it to go over what time frame, and what sort of curve would you expect it to follow as it decreases?
I don't know about the curve, but my (non-diabetic) hubby has tried to "catch" himself with high blood sugar a lot by doing things like you describe - he'll eat something really sugary and test right away. Other than that one 160 I mentioned above, his blood sugar stays right around 100.

Last edited by Athena; 05-24-2010 at 10:52 AM..
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Old 05-24-2010, 11:16 AM
Bijou Drains Bijou Drains is offline
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I read recently that doctors are moving towards usinig the HgA1c test to diagnose diabetes.
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  #20  
Old 05-24-2010, 12:04 PM
Qadgop the Mercotan Qadgop the Mercotan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bijou Drains View Post
I read recently that doctors are moving towards usinig the HgA1c test to diagnose diabetes.
That is another way to diagnose diabetes, advocated by the American Diabetes Association and the International Diabetes Federation. They say a HgbA1C of 6.5% or higher also would establish the diagnosis of diabetes.

Note that this does not supercede the other ways to diagnose diabetes, nor is there yet general acceptance in the medical community overall to use this standard to replace other, less expensive ways of diagnosising it.

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/704021
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  #21  
Old 05-24-2010, 12:08 PM
Qadgop the Mercotan Qadgop the Mercotan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama Zappa View Post
Nobody yet has answered the OP's question though - say you set Jamie and Adam to chow down on a big bowlful of Chocolate Frosted Sugar Bombs washed down with a big swig of Karo syrup: you'd expect their blood sugar to spike once that hits the stomach and bloodstream, then as the pancreas does its job, you'd expect it to start dropping reasonably fast, right?

So how high would you expect it to go over what time frame, and what sort of curve would you expect it to follow as it decreases?

All this assumes someone who does *not* have the other symptoms (thirst, etc.).
By definition you'd expect it to always be under 200 2 hours after a meal or glucose load, and under 126 after a fast.

If it was hitting 200 or above randomly without symptoms, I'd still suspect diabetes, or at least impaired glucose tolerance, a pre-curser to diabetes.

A sample curve is here: http://themedicalbiochemistrypage.or...erancetest.jpg

Lots others can be found by typing "postprandial", "glucose", and "curve" into a google image search.
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  #22  
Old 05-24-2010, 09:29 PM
Chief Pedant Chief Pedant is offline
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I'm not sure the OP's title question has been answered here.

If I am reading it correctly, the OP wants to know how high a non-diabetic's blood sugar could get...not what the definition of diabetes is according to an oral glucose tolerance test load.

Let's take an individual with normal renal physiology and a normal oral glucose tolerance test. How high could you push his sugar?

A glucose tolerance test uses 1.75 grams of glucose per kilo, up to 75 grams of glucose, ingested on an empty stomach within 5 minutes. But what happens if we give a guy, say, 1,000 grams of glucose on an empty stomach? Let's give him another 1,000 grams as soon as we can get it down him. And let's keep doing it...How high can we push his sugar? It won't be a test for diabetes, that's for sure. I think this is the gist of the OP's question.

I wish I knew the answer for him. I can comment on a few things, and that's all, unfortunately.

First of all, let's assume he can keep that huge load of glucose down without barfing. It won't empty into the upper intestine where most glucose gets absorbed all at once, but let's say a lot gets through and he starts getting this huge load of glucose into the blood stream.

Would it overload his capacity to carry it intracellularly using his endogenous insulin? I think it would. Even if his pancreas could keep up, I think the cellular transport mechanisms would be saturated. Now what happens?

Well, if his kidneys are normal, the proximal tubules grab all the glucose up until his blood sugar gets to 180 or so; when that renal threshold is reached (this varies by individual) he starts spilling sugar into the urine. The glucose creates its own osmotic drag and starts pulling free water with it, and he starts drinking water. This, of course, is the polyuria/polydypsia part of glucose out of control.

On average, most people don't do a good job of keeping up with their free water loss, and I'd bet you could get a person with absolutely normal physiology pushed up over 200 or 250 with nothing but a huge oral glucose load. But if you are standing there encouraging him to just drown himself drinking water (and perhaps some electrolytes with it to keep up with those losses), I would be surprised if you could get a normal physiology much over 250 mg/dl of glucose with any size oral glucose load.

Now on the other hand, if you don't water load him aggressively, all bets are off, and once you overload the intracellular transport, you are left with renal excretion to get rid of glucose. When that happens, and the patient gets dehydrated, I think even a person with totally normal physiology could have their glucose driven very very high--certainly all the way to non-ketotic hyperglycemic hyperosmolar coma. You'd basically poison them with glucose.

In short, without access to free water, a patient with otherwise normal physiology ingesting nothing but huge amounts of glucose could get very high blood sugars indeed, in my opinion.

Haven't tried it, though.

Last edited by Chief Pedant; 05-24-2010 at 09:31 PM..
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  #23  
Old 05-24-2010, 09:41 PM
Qadgop the Mercotan Qadgop the Mercotan is offline
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Originally Posted by Chief Pedant View Post
In short, without access to free water, a patient with otherwise normal physiology ingesting nothing but huge amounts of glucose could get very high blood sugars indeed, in my opinion.
Yeah, but is that restriction reasonable?

And wouldn't adequate amounts of free water tend to blunt that glucose spike?

We just need a few volunteer dopers to test this out on...............

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Old 05-25-2010, 01:30 PM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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Just reading your description of how to poison yourself with glucose is making my stomach roll. {insert barfing smiley}
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