DKA Question

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DKA Question


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Old 05-28-2011, 21:06   #1
 
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Since I am type 2 not taking meds, pretty much the only things I know about Diabetes are what I should & shouldn't eat and what my bg numbers should be. I read a post this morning where someone is having trouble with DKA so I went online and read an article that said Ketoacidosis is when your cells don't get the glucose they need for energy, your body begins to burn fat for energy, which produces ketones. Ketones are acids that build up in the blood and appear in the urine when your body doesn't have enough insulin. The article also said it is rare in people with type 2, but can happen.

With that definition in mind, if someone is on a high fat diet, eats very few carbs and begins their day eating only protein & fat in an attempt to make their body burn fat instead of (I don't know whether the word here should be carbs or insulin or what.), can that cause a person's body to produce ketones that will build up in the blood and appear in the urine, since your body is burning fat for energy?

This is probably a dumb question, and in this case I sure hope it is.

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Old 05-28-2011, 21:54   #2
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Ketosis is a desired result of low carb and not dangerous, but ketoacidosis is, but the one thing missing is that once your body switches over to burning fat, not carb, it's not a problem, at least according to what I read. i've been in ketosis for 10 months and know people who stay in the state for other reasons, like bi-polar and epilepsy for example, and do fine. It must have something to do with the diabetic process I guess. I'd like for someone more informed than I to answer. I thought I could, but wondering now!

Not a dumb question, I'd say...




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Old 05-28-2011, 22:31   #3
 
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Maybe the thing that is dumb is the way I asked the question, maybe people don't understand the question, but I don't know any other way to ask it.

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Old 05-28-2011, 22:52   #4
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The trouble isn't with you, (forgive an addled old woman for calling you the wrong name all this time - so so SORRY, Gizmo! No more "Rhonda", I promise!) - there's much confusion about ketoacidosis and ketosis. Half the time the professionals don't even know which is which, & start blaming low-carb menus. Yet another sign that nobody knows about diabetes and apparently they don't care to learn.

It seems to me that some ketones & safely low blood sugar is ketosis & not dangerous. High ketones & high blood sugar is ketoacidosis & deadly. Please, somebody, correct me if I'm wrong.




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Old 05-28-2011, 22:55   #5
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If you google ketosis vs keotacidosis, there are numerous (amd highly variable) descriptions of the difference!

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Old 05-29-2011, 00:01   #6
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It has been well explained above but this is how I put it in another recent thread...

>>
An house-plant needs just the right amount of light, water, food, soil pH etc... too much or too little of any of these can lead to the leaves dropping off or worse.

In much the same way: our bodies have systems which require an internal balance in order to provide the ideal environment for our cells. There are systems which (when working normally) manage this balance or homeostasis -- for example there is a feedback mechanism which uses insulin to lower the BG level and Glucagon to raise BGs... so that the normal non-diabetic person always has BGs in the normal range

The fluid balance and pH is also controlled by similar mechanisms.

Ketosis (raised level of Ketones) is our normal physical fasting state between meals and overnight when the body is using Fatty Acids as the major energy source. Many folks rarely see this these days as the Western diet keeps them constantly topped up with refined Carbohydrates. On a low-carb diet you may test positive for Ketones BUT so long as your BG is well controlled there is no cause for alarm.

Ketoacidosis (Diabetic KetoAcidosis - DKA) is a dangerously high level of Ketones that changes the pH (Acid:Base) balance of the body fluids. DKA is most commonly (but not exclusively) seen in an untreated Type 1 Diabetic where there is a lack of insulin -- pump failed, insulin lost potency, insulin not given etc... -- and is usually accompanied by dangerously high BG levels.

You would need to watch for raising BGs and positive test for Ketones... in which case you need to stay well hydrated, and check that your insulin is working... if in doubt seek medical help.
>>

We are actually using fatty acids much, if not all, of the time as an energy source but after a meal including carbs we tend to use the carbs first -- some will say that is because it is our preferred fuel, but I might argue that it is because high BGs are toxic and we need to get rid of it.

So despite what you may read online (and there is much misinformation on this topic), burning Fat as an energy source is NOT a last ditch effort by the body to keep us from starvation, and ketosis IS a normal state of affairs.

In fact I recently read that infants feeding on Mother's milk are in ketosis much of the time.

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Old 05-29-2011, 00:28   #7
 
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Very good explaination, fgummett. Thank you so much. One less thing to worry about.

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Old 05-29-2011, 00:41   #8
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well for me the only time I got told I had to eat as I had high ketones in my urine was when I was in hospital. I hadn't eaten all day and my BGL was still sitting on >7 and didn't go lower than that.... that's without food. But obviously I wasn't well, hence the higher BGLs. I think they just figure any high ketones is not good for diabetics.

 
Old 05-29-2011, 00:44   #9
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I try to keep mine between 15 and 40 which aren't really high. My friend who is controlling her bi-polar disease tries to keep hers at 40 and can actually 'feel' when she drops below it.




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