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Lowering Blood Sugar Levels – Does Drinking Water Help

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There are some experts who would tell you that type 2 diabetes can be diluted away if you just drink enough water. There is a very limited extent to which this is true, and it is certainly not as simple as drinking a lot of water.

Diabetes, Type 1, Type 2, or even Gestational, is a disease defined by having too much sugar in the bloodstream. More specifically, the blood is too concentrated in sugar; the blood sugar levels measured in milligrams per deciliter or millimoles are too high. It would seem to make sense that diluting the bloodstream would lower these concentrations of bloodstream sugar and make Type 2 diabetes go away, but there's just one catch.

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The kidneys make sure that other components of the blood, notably sodium and the pH, are regulated within a very narrow range. The kidneys will work harder to eliminate fluid when blood sugar levels are high, but they won't eliminate sugar at the expense of getting rid of too much sodium or a drastically changing pH.

It is definitely true that diabetics who eat more salty foods and drink more water will have slightly lower blood sugar levels, usually on the order of 10 mg/dL or 0.56 mmol/L. To do this, the kidneys retain fluid, which raises blood pressure and weight.  It would just be easier not to eat that little bit of carbohydrate that accounts for that 10 mg/dL (0.56 mmol/L)?

When blood sugar levels get extremely high, 550 mg/dL or 30 mmol/L or so, dehydration becomes a serious issue. However, when this happens, water gets 'stuck' in places that the kidneys don't regulate, and it's never enough just to drink water.  Drinking water won't by itself resolve the potentially deadly condition known as a hyperosmolar hyperglycemic state. Drinking more water helps your kidneys rapidly flush waste materials out of your system, which is a natural and healthy benefit to people with diabetes

Drink water for your general health, but is not effective to drink water to regulate your blood sugar levels. And if you do become dehydrated, seek medical attention early. If you find:

  • your skin seems loose
  • your urine is dark

and especially if you have been in heat or had a recent infection, seek medical care for dehydration. Just about everything we eat or drink causes the blood sugar to rise, with the one exception: water. In fact, staying well hydrated can actually keep your blood sugar levels down.


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Beverleigh Piepers RN... the Diabetes Detective.
Beverleigh Piepers is the author of this article. This article can be used for reprint on your website provided all the links in the article are complete and active. Copyright (c) 2010 - All Rights Reserved Worldwide

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