Should A Diabetic Skip Meals?

All diabetics, both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetics, are aware of the importance of making the right food choices. And eating the right foods makes all the difference in relation to the other important aspect of diabetes, blood sugar levels. But just picking the right foods isn’t enough. You have to have a schedule in place for when those meals will be eaten. The problem is some diabetics feel it is okay to skip a meal now and then. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth.

In a society where body image is everything, it is common practice for people to skip meals as a means of maintaining, or even attempting to lose, weight. Many people have the misconception missing a meal will allow them to remain healthier. After all, if you miss a meal, you won’t be consuming calories, and calories are evil, right?

While a non-diabetic might be able to get away with this type of logic without serious repercussions, it is a dangerous scenario for a diabetic.

  • The worst that can happen to a non-diabetic is they get really hungry.
  • The worst that can happen to a diabetic is hypoglycemic shock and possibly a coma. Not exactly the same thing.

Imagine a campfire: As long as it is fed an energy source of wood it remains bright and intense. It gives off its own energy… heat. But stop feeding the fire and eventually its intensity will dim; the heat will diminish and before long, it will go out altogether.

A diabetic’s body is just like the fire. As long as it is fed an energy source, which is food, then it will continue to burn efficiently. But when that fuel source is interrupted, such as skipping a meal, the body’s energy drops dramatically to a dangerously low-level.

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If the fire goes out, you simply start it up again with more wood. But when a diabetic skips meals, their blood sugar levels plummet and puts them in such a state of physical deterioration, it makes it very difficult and sometimes even impossible, for them to correct the problem on their own. The longer they go without food the worse these symptoms become. This is a very dangerous situation for a diabetic to be put in. So why would they intentionally do this to themselves?

Skipping meals is no joke: It puts a tremendous strain on an already fragile part of your system. Even when it is not done intentionally, the results are still the same. That’s why it is important to always be prepared to have something on hand for a meal.

Another concern is the belief a skipped meal can be recovered: Not true. Once a meal is passed, it is gone forever. Trying to over-compensate with your next meal, in an attempt to make up for the missed one, will put your blood sugar on a roller coaster effect. First, your blood sugar will crash from lack of food, then it will skyrocket as you cram every morsel of food you can into your system at once. Remember the fire: feed it a constant supply.

Meal planning also includes snacking, too: These are necessary to maintain that steady sugar level in between meals. There will be days when it is time for a snack and you simply don’t feel hungry. Do not let your stomach dictate whether or not you have a snack. Your stomach is not in control of your blood sugar. Skip a meal or a scheduled snack and your blood sugar will remind you of that.

Remember to be prepared: Whether it is a meal or a snack, you need to always have the right foods on hand. This will eliminate the need, and the temptation, to go with an easy, unhealthy option.


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