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Do Blood Glucose Levels Comport Upon Hunger As Well As Satiety?

You've heard the story before: when you lot swallow carbohydrate-rich foods that digest quickly, it sends your blood refined saccharify as well as insulin levels soaring, as well as then your blood refined saccharify degree comes crashing dorsum downwardly as well as you lot experience hungry as well as cranky.  You accomplish for to a greater extent than carbohydrate, perpetuating the bike of crashes, overeating, as well as fatty gain.

It sounds pretty reasonable-- inward fact, so reasonable that it's commonly stated every bit fact inward pop media as well as inward casual conversation.  This see is so deeply ingrained inward the pop nous that people often enjoin "I convey depression blood sugar" instead of "I'm hungry" or "I'm tired".  But this hypothesis has a big problem: despite extensive research, it hasn't been clearly supported.  I've written well-nigh this number earlier (1).

Influenza A virus subtype H5N1 novel study offers a straightforward examination of the hypothesis, as well as in 1 lawsuit once again finds it lacking.

The study

Bernd Schultes as well as colleagues used a clever pattern to isolate the lawsuit of blood glucose on appetite (2).  They recruited xv good for you lot immature men, as well as on 2 occasions fed them an identical calorie-free breakfast.

On 1 occasion, they waited 1 hr after the repast as well as infused saline containing fifty grams of glucose into the volunteers' bloodstream over a one-hour period.  On the other occasion, they did the same affair except using saline without glucose.  Throughout the infusion, as well as 1 hr afterward, the researchers monitored levels of blood glucose, blood insulin, as well as markers of appetite.

The results

As expected, the glucose infusion markedly increased blood glucose as well as insulin levels inward the hr next the meal.  After the researchers stopped the glucose infusion, the volunteers' blood glucose levels declined, eventually reaching a degree significantly lower than the command status (54 mg/dL vs seventy mg/dL).  This is the post-meal "crash" that is supposed to trigger appetite.

Yet levels of hunger, appetite, satiety, as well as fullness didn't differ betwixt groups at whatever time-- either during the infusion or afterward.


We convey extensive testify that the encephalon pays attending to blood glucose levels, as well as triggers appetite when it goes besides depression every bit business office of a suite of protective responses to keep blood glucose degree (this is called the "counterregulatory response").  However, the testify overall suggests that you lot convey to convey pretty serious hypoglycemia for this to happen-- something that rarely occurs inward people who aren't using insulin to process diabetes.  When researchers genuinely mensurate the blood glucose degree of non-diabetic people who study feeling "hypoglycemic", a pocket-size pct of them genuinely are hypoglycemic, but the vast bulk convey perfectly normal blood glucose levels (3, 4, 5, 6).  Hypoglycemia is non something that occurs often inward the full general non-diabetic population, as well as it doesn't offering a compelling explanation for why nosotros experience hungry or tired betwixt meals.

The encephalon listens to a diversity of signals that signal the body's issue energy status, as well as it integrates these signals to decide your sensation of hunger or satiety (7).  Glucose is 1 of the signals the encephalon listens to, but at that topographic point are many others, as well as the encephalon doesn't appear to pay really much attending to the glucose signal when it's inside the arrive at that occurs inward the daily life of most people.  In contrast, the encephalon pays attending to levels of leptin, CCK, GLP-1, glucagon, amylin, ghrelin, as well as signals ascending from the gut via the vagus nervus (7).

I similar this study because it manipulated blood glucose levels inward a manner that's non probable to endure confounded past times variables that bedevil other study designs.  They pulled this off past times straight manipulating blood glucose, mimicking the glucose profile of a high-glycemic repast to run into if post-meal fluctuations at the extreme terminate of the normal arrive at impact appetite.

And, consistent alongside most previous research, it looks similar they don't.  How produce nosotros reconcile this alongside the fact that some single-meal studies convey constitute that lower-glycemic meals are to a greater extent than sating than higher-glycemic meals (8)?  Here's what I think.  The sating lawsuit of low-glycemic meals belike doesn't convey much to produce alongside blood glucose at all, but rather: 1) the fact that these studies are normally non properly controlled for other variables known to impact satiety, such every bit calorie density, fiber, protein, as well as palatability; as well as 2) the fact that lower-glycemic foods digest to a greater extent than slow as well as so tend to instruct out saccharide hanging around inward the gut interacting alongside intestinal satiety receptors for longer.

The authors conclude:
These findings clearly verbalize against the notion that fluctuations inward glycemia as well as also insulinemia stand upwardly for major signals inward the short-term rule of hunger as well as satiety.
Bariatric physician Arya Sharma also had some proficient thoughts on this study (9):
The lesson here, I approximate is that, merely because at that topographic point is a seemingly compelling narrative to back upwardly an idea, it does non hateful that that’s how biological scientific discipline inward existent life genuinely works.
I agree!


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