(Low Blood Glucose; Low Blood Sugar)
- Taking too much blood sugar-lowering medication
- Delaying or missing meals, or eating too little at meals
- Too much or too strenuous exercise
- Alcohol abuse , especially binge drinking coupled with not eating
- Early pregnancy
- Certain pituitary or adrenal gland conditions
- Certain liver conditions
- Kidney disease
- Certain types of stomach surgery
- Tumor that makes insulin
- Hereditary enzyme or hormone deficiencies
- Severe illness or infection
- Having diabetes
- Taking medications that lower blood sugar levels
- Drinking too much alcohol
- Fasting, particularly in combination with strenuous exercise
- Heart palpitations
- Tingling feeling around the mouth
- Inappropriate behavior or severe confusion
- Poor control of movements
- Loss of consciousness
Eating sugar in a rapidly absorbable form, such as:
- Fruit juice
- Sugared soft drink
- Table sugar in water
- Honey or corn syrup
- Taking glucose tablets
- IV glucose (in severe cases)
For people with diabetes:
- Monitor your medication. Take it as prescribed.
- Follow the diet and exercise plans given by your doctor.
- Avoid drinking alcohol in excess.
Non-diabetic people prone to hypoglycemia:
- Avoid drinking too much alcohol.
- Eat frequent, small meals.
- Eat enough food before exercising.
- Wear a medical alert bracelet or other medical alert identification.
- Learn to recognize symptoms and take quick corrective measures.
American Diabetes Association http://www.diabetes.org
Hypoglycemia Support Foundation http://www.hypoglycemia.org
Canadian Diabetes Association http://www.diabetes.ca
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Hypoglycemia. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed.ebscohost.com/about/about-us . Updated August 23, 2013. Accessed August 28, 2013.
Hypoglycemia. National Institute of Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Diseases website. Available at: http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/hypoglycemia/index.aspx . Updated November 6, 2012. Accessed August 28, 2013.
Hypoglycemia (low blood glucose). American Diabetes Association website. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/treatment-and-care/blood-glucose-control/hypoglycemia-low-blood.html . Accessed August 28, 2013.
Kasper D, Harrison T. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2005.
- Reviewer: Kim Carmichael, MD
- Review Date: 09/2013 -
- Update Date: 09/30/2013 -