View Full Version : Low Glucose and ADHD


Lunacie
02-08-13, 07:24 PM
There has been mention here of Dr. Barkley's reference to low glucose levels

in the brain as affecting ADHD symptoms. I was curious about this so . . .


This is certainly not new research, but it seems to be accepted knowledge.

The authors’ aim was to examine the regional anatomy of brain activation by cognitive tasks commonly used in hypoglycemia research and to assess the effect of acute hypoglycemia on these in healthy volunteers.

The Effect of Acute Hypoglycemia on Brain Function and Activation: A Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study
found at: search = medscape.com/viewarticle/406046

What is hypoglycemia? How does it affect the brain?


Hypoglycemia is a clinical situation characterized by a reduction in plasma glucose concentration to a level that may induce symptoms or signs such as altered mental status and/or sympathetic nervous system stimulation

found at: emedicine.medscape.com/article/122122-overview


So . . . it seems similar to the problems diabetics have

in processing sugar and maintaining glucose levels in the blood.


Why do some people have problems balancing blood glucose levels?

I have to stop now as the weather here is giving me a migraine. :doh:

mildadhd
02-08-13, 08:08 PM
The brain is active all the time,

in wakefullness and sleep.

Therefore, it, like the heart,

is critically in need of a continuous supply of metabolic fuel substances (energy)

and oxygen provided by the blood flow.


In general,

increase in neural activity in any particular brain area results in a rapid increase in the flow of blood to that area,

to supply increase needs for oxygen, glucose

and to remove carbon dioxide.


The PHYSIOLOGY COLORING BOOK, Kapit/Macey/Meisami, P 112.




1)Less glucose,

less blood flow,

less function.


2)Less Oxygen,

less blood flow,

less function.


3)I wonder what are the effect on the brain if oxygen and /or glucose are lacking,

and carbon dioxide is not removed? (Not sure)


(there is more than one answer to your question, will make a separate posts)

Lunacie
02-08-13, 08:24 PM
Peripheral, you didn't include a link for your quote? Where is that from please?

mildadhd
02-08-13, 08:43 PM
Peripheral, you didn't include a link for your quote? Where is that from please?

It's from my coloring book. :D

The PHYSIOLOGY COLORING BOOK, Kapit/Macey/Meisami

I got it in the university medical textbook section.

Totally recommended.

silivrentoliel
02-08-13, 08:50 PM
I have the same coloring book, but for vet med :D

More on topic though...
Why do some people have problems balancing blood glucose levels?

I know your question isn't directly related to diabetes (or it might be, I don't know), but I found this...


Some things that can make low blood sugar levels more likely to happen are:


skipping meals and snacks
not eating enough food at a meal or snack
exercising longer or harder than usual without eating some extra food
getting too much insulin
not timing the insulin doses properly with meals, snacks, and exercise

Also, certain things may increase how quickly insulin gets absorbed into the bloodstream and can make hypoglycemia more likely to occur. For example, taking a hot shower or bath right after having an insulin injection increases blood flow through the blood vessels in the skin, which can cause the insulin to be absorbed more quickly than usual.


Info here (http://kidshealth.org/teen/diabetes_center/treatment/blood_sugar_low.html)


I'm guessing their body can have problems producing the proper amounts of insulin just as an ADHD brain can have problems producing the proper amounts of dopamine.


It's just a guess... I have been known to be wrong :D

Lunacie
02-08-13, 09:04 PM
I have the same coloring book, but for vet med :D

More on topic though...


I know your question isn't directly related to diabetes (or it might be, I don't know), but I found this...




Info here (http://kidshealth.org/teen/diabetes_center/treatment/blood_sugar_low.html)


I'm guessing their body can have problems producing the proper amounts of insulin just as an ADHD brain can have problems producing the proper amounts of dopamine.


It's just a guess... I have been known to be wrong :D

That's what I was guessing, and it's only a guess on my part.

I was wondering which came first - the brain not signaling that more

glucose is needed - or a lack of glucose making the brain sluggish?

Tyler Durden
02-08-13, 09:31 PM
Just a quick note,

I remember Peripheral initiating talk of Barkleys references to glucose levels a while back, would be interesting to hear more of what he has to say.

I believe you have to ask the right questions to get the right answers.

Things it might be productive to ask are..

why there might be dopamine deficiencies?

why there might be glucose deficiencies?

Along with implications.

There are reasons, things do not just magically come to be.

Once you understand the 'why', you truly understand.

Understanding the 'what' ( as in what is occuring) often in these cases requires understanding many interdependencies.

The answer to the question could well be 'chicken and egg', it is a cycle, one reinforces the other, therefore the why is what needs to be understood.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 12:40 AM
.


A complex condition like ADD cannot be traced to just one part of the brain.

Many circuits and systems must be involved...

...disturbances of the orbitofrontal cortex are,

indeed,

implicated in disorders of impulse inhibition and emotional self-regulation,

including ADD.




Nature's goal for human growth is for the eventual maturation of a self-motivated,

self-regulated and self-reliant adult.

The infant lacks these attributes.

We may say that the natural agenda is really the transformation of regulation from dependence on another individual to independence,

from external regulation to internal regulation.

This shift from external to internal regulation requires the development of the prefrontal cortex,

the cortex in the anterior [front] portion of the brain,

including and especially the orbitofrontal cortex.



"The right orbitofrontal cortex,

which for brevity we will call the OFC,

has connections with virtually every other part of the cortex.

It also has connections with the lower brain structures,

where the body's internal physiological states are controlled and monitored,

and where the most primitive and powerful emotions such as fear and rage are generated.

It is at the center of the brain's reward and motivation apparatus and contains more of the reward chemicals associated with pleasure and joy--dopamine and endorphins--than almost any other area of the cortex.

(Above quotes -Gabor Mate M.D., Scattered, P78)



The prefrontal cortex has connections/functions with so many different areas of cortex, and middle and lower brain,

that I am leaving out lots of important information related to the underdevelopment of the Prefrontal Cortex and ADD,

to focus as much as possible only on this thread topic,

Low Glucose and ADD.

Still it is hard to leave out some parts,

that might confuse the specific example.

That doesn't mean either,

that the parts left out are not connected in some way to "glucose and ADD",

I am just trying to keep a complex explanation as simple as possible.

I plan to return to information I left out in future threads and posts.

Please, I don't mind if someone ask's for clarification.

Trying to explain the material helps me learn the material.


Hyperactivity is experienced in a number of ways.

The person with ADD feels discomfort at having to keep still for even short periods of time.

There may be a physical inability to refrain from restless movements for more than a few minutes.

Always, one is caught in a mental whirlwind.

A seventy-two-year-old-man, a geologist,

called it "newsreel thinking,"

by which he meant the rapid shifting of his thoughts from one subject to another...

...Another sign of hyperactivity may be frequent movement of the eyes,

a scanning of the environment that frustrates other people.

It is disconcerting to be with an individual who seems to be always on the lookout for something,

or someone, else.


Hyperactivity,

like other traits associated with ADD,

is a normal stage in the maturation of a child.

In attention deficit disorder stages become states:

the individual's psychological development remains static.

Behaviors and emotional patterns remain at a level characteristic of the toddler.

Hyperactivity and its counterpart,

the lethargy of many children and adults with ADD,

are both exaggerations of body states first experienced during toddlerhood,

from about the end of "the second nine months of gestation" to about the age of eighteen months.

They each represent the activity of the autonomic nervous system,

which,

in ADD,

is poorly controlled.

It is helpful to look closer at how that works.


(Above quote from -Gabor Mate M.D., Scattered, P 131.)

I will explain how this example about poorly control Autonomic Nervous System,

is related to an underdeveloped prefrontal cortex, blood sugar regulation and ADD in my next post.

As well as being relative to some of the information in quote below by Silivrentoliel.

Some things that can make low blood sugar levels more likely to happen are:
-skipping meals and snacks
-not eating enough food at a meal or snack
-exercising longer or harder than usual without eating some extra food

(Part of the information quoted from a previous post #5 by Silivrentoliel)





(Continued explanation in my next post in this thread)
.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 03:31 AM
......




The Nervous system,

with the brain and spinal cord at its center,

has two major parts...




The autonomic nervous system (ANS) is autonomous from,

independent of,

our conscious will,

as its name implies.

It controls what are called the smooth muscles,

which line the walls of organs such as the gut,

blood vessels,

glands and airways in the lungs.

It governs body states such as the release of hormones,

blood flow to internal organs and to the skin and the contraction of the muscles in the intestines.




[And] The voluntary nervous system moves the muscles of the trunk,

limbs and head,

in deliberate actions such as speech or changes of position...



Autonomic nerves also set baseline tension level of voluntary muscles,

as well as skin temperature and the erection or relaxation of hair follicles.

In general,

they provide the wiring for a stable internal chemical and physiological body environment








The autonomic nervous system (ANS) has two opposing divisions:


the parasympathetic,

which conserves energy.


There are also times when the body needs to slow down,

even times when being absolutely still is a matter of life and death.

If flight or fight are impossible,

not being noticed may be our ticket to survival.

When parasympathetic nerves dominate,

the body slumps,

head hangs down,

the arms go limp,

the eyes are averted,

the facial muscles go slack.

As the smooth muscles fibers encircling the arterioles in the face lose their tone,

these small blood vessels dilate and the facial skin is suffused with blood.

We blush.

The low-arousal is experienced in the common feeling of shame.

In a chronic form,

it is a characteristic of depression.





the sympathetic,

which expends energy,


When we are in a sympathetic aroused state,

our muscles tense,

our heart rate increases,

blood flow goes to our limbs and adrenal

our limbs and adrenaline is pumped through our bodies.

The firing of sympathetic nerves creates a body climate of high arousal,

important in survival because it enables us to move quickly in either escape or self-defense.

This is the well-known fight-or-flight response.

In daily life,

we experience it as the body state associated with excitement.





-Gabor Mate M.D., Scattered,Chapter "HYPERACTIVITY, LETHARGY AND SHAME", P131.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 03:34 AM
.

The body's physiological states are directly influenced by emotions because the part of the cortex that processes emotions also oversees the ANS.



part of the prefrontal cortex,


The Tummy aches of the sensitive child are muscle cramps caused by autonomic signals,

triggered by unconscious fears and tensions.

"Gut fellings" express the effect of emotions on the ANS,

as does the common report that "my hair stood on end."



Autonomic nerves are responsible for tight muscles and explain why some things make us "sick to the stomach,"

or give us a "pain in the neck".





-Gabor Mate M.D., Scattered,Chapter "HYPERACTIVITY, LETHARGY AND SHAME", P131.

.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 03:59 AM
Hyperactivity is unregulated high arousal,

appropriate in the young toddler.

Toward the end of the first nine months of life,

the infant begins an enthusiastic exploration of her universe.

No longer having to rely on adults for mobility,

she tirelessely examines every nook and cranny of her surroundings,

every object.

She tests,

tastes,

plays and discovers,

learning the purpose and use of many things.

During this phase of prolonged excitement,

neural pathways are established that enable the cortex to inhibit the sympathetic nervous system--if the necessary circumstances are present.


During stress,

these circuits do not develop properly,

and hyperactivity persists.

The stage,

meant to last only a few months,

becomes a state that the child remains stuck in.


-Gabor Mate M.D., Scattered, "HYPERACTIVITY, LETHARGY AND SHAME", P131.


.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 06:19 AM
Blood flow changes occur in brain diseases-

Certain brain and mental diseases such as schizophrenia and depression and the senile disorders such as the dementias,

e.g., Alzheimer's disease,

involving reduced cognitive and memory capacities,

are associated with reduced blood flow/metabolic activity.

Brain diseases such as epilepsy,

involving convulsions,

create excessive electrical activity and increased blood flow and metabolic activity.


-The PHYSIOLOGY COLORING BOOK, Kapit/Macey/Meisami, P 112


I don't feel comfortable using words like disease and senile,

I am not sure if they are appropriate to describe ADD,

but I think the general idea about reduced blood flow and metabolic activity is correct.

Opinions?


One hereditary factor,(which may include epigenetics)

that is missing from this information and is important to consider,

is the ADD infants can have a extra sensitive nature (temperament) to certain environmental conditions.


Certain environmental conditions that might not interfere with a less sensitive infants early development,

in the same way.



Anyone wants me to find more evidence about any questionable information,

or present information that might help clarify the topics ,

is appreciated.

(I have more material but I think these posts touch most of the basics, in a very general way for this thread OP topic "ADD and Glucose", for discussion purposes)




.






.

SquarePeg
02-09-13, 10:12 AM
thanks for all this info, so going for 14 hour stretches without food, really isnīt doing me any favours?

Lunacie
02-09-13, 11:52 AM
Well, that was a lot of info.


I see "stress" and "hyperactivity" and "sensitive nature" and "reduced blood flow"

. . . but I don't see anything about glucose levels in the brain. :scratch:

MellyFishButt
02-09-13, 12:00 PM
What came first? The hypoglycemia or the ADHD? All my life my father and myself have exhibited behaviors exactly like hypoglycemia, even down to not being about to actually talk because of low blood sugar. I got tested twice and apparently I am not but ADHD instead. If my father is also ADHD, he is HIGHLY functional (the ****). Has a bad temper but has taught himself programming languages and how to run a ranch simply out of curiosity....hence the **** comment. I wish I had that kind of dedication. I tried to suggest it to my mom and she laughed but it could all just be hyperfocus.

SquarePeg
02-09-13, 03:00 PM
I am not but ADHD instead. If my father is also ADHD, he is HIGHLY functional (the ****). Has a bad temper but has taught himself programming languages and how to run a ranch simply out of curiosity....hence the **** comment. I wish I had that kind of dedication. I tried to suggest it to my mom and she laughed but it could all just be hyperfocus.

I think this is common with people with ADHD, they are self taught, they loke to work things out in their own way, even if it takes longer, this is easier than going on courses and studying.

If I buy anything new electrical I never read the manual, I just work out how it works (not all functions at once). I canīread instructions.

I used powerpoint for the first time (no great skill I know) but I worked it out myself even though it would have been so much easier to just google simple instructions and follow them.

I worked in a law office for 20 years a legal PA, I learned on the job as I went along about business law contracts etc. There were others that got so annoyed with me because they had been to college for 2 years to get the qualification and I earned more than they did.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 03:14 PM
Well, that was a lot of info.


I see "stress" and "hyperactivity" and "sensitive nature" and "reduced blood flow"

. . . but I don't see anything about glucose levels in the brain. :scratch:


Thanks for the questions,

more questions are always appreciate for clarity.



Compare the following information in the quote below,

to a person with ADD (underdeveloped "impaired" prefrontal cortex),

who also forgets to eat and has lower blood sugar as a result.

The person with ADD "falls apart".


Already having a under functioning impaired prefrontal cortex,

becomes even more impaired if there isn't enough blood flow to the prefrontal cortex.

Making the ADD impairment even worse.


Lack of glucose (blood sugar) results in a lack of brain flow.

(Frontal lobe areas show above average activity even at rest)

Requiring glucose levels (blood sugar) for proper functioning, there is a lot more to this explanation but will return to this topic as well in the future.

(The brain is active all the time, in wakefulness and sleep, therefore, it , like the heart, is critically in need of a continuous supply of metabolic fuel substances (energy) and oxygen provided by the blood flow.)



Note in the quote below,

that activity also increases during pain [physical] and anxiety [emotional] in the frontal lobe.(this is very important in regards to ADD and will return to these topics again after a better understanding on the basics.)

Having a impaired frontal lobe impairs so many internal and external body and brain functions.

stress, sensitive nature, blood flow all play a part/role in the ongoing result,

as well many other systems of brain and body.




BRAIN BLOOD FLOW & CHANGES WITH FUNCTION...

...Regional blood flow helps localize sites of higher brain functions-

Frontal lobe areas show above average activity even at rest.

Activity increases during contemplation,

problem solving,

and planning,

as well as during pain and anxiety.


The simple reading of words increases activity in the posterior visual areas,

while thinking about the reading material spreads the activity to parietal and temporal association areas.


Listening carefully to words increases activity in auditory areas of temporal-parietal cortex.


Speaking words activates Broca's and the speech cortex on the left hemisphere,

and the speech sensory areas (lips, tongue, face) of both hemispheres.

Thinking about words activates the large region of frontal,

parietal and temporal lobes (Wernicke's area) involved in language comprehension and planning...


All quotes present by me from:

The PHYSIOLOGY COLORING BOOK, Kapit/Macey/Meisami, BRAIN METABOLISM & BLOOD FLOW IN BRAIN FUNCTION, (Nervous System), P112.



(Side Note: I will present more specifically about the brain's dependency on glucose in the next post.)

(There is also lots of more to discuss, but I am trying to present only the basics, for easier to understand, discussion at this time)

Lunacie
02-09-13, 03:19 PM
Peripheral, I am trying to understand why you are linking glucose in the blood

to the flow of blood to the prefrontal cortex.


Maybe it does do that, but I didn't see anything in the quotes you shared

that refers to how glucose in the blood affects the flow of blood in the brain.



Maybe there's something I'm missing here?

Or maybe there's something you're leaving out?

Maybe you're making a connection between things that don't actually connect?

mildadhd
02-09-13, 04:18 PM
Peripheral, I am trying to understand why you are linking glucose in the blood

to the flow of blood to the prefrontal cortex.


Maybe it does do that, but I didn't see anything in the quotes you shared

that refers to how glucose in the blood affects the flow of blood in the brain.



Maybe there's something I'm missing here?

Or maybe there's something you're leaving out?



Lunacie,

All the posts I made before today is an outline for discussion.

I haven't presented everything.


My goal was to introduce as much of the basics related to ADD,

and the OP question for discussion.

(I am almost sure there is still basic information missing, but it is a good start)


The basic foundation includes many topics that are interrelated,

in regards to the OP topic.




I think you are asking good questions,

questions I was hoping people would ask.

There are so many interrelated questions/topics to discuss,

that I think presenting a basic foundation to ask questions from makes it a lot easier.

I don't know what information people understand already and what information is in question.

I wish I could give you one answer to the question,

but like Tyler said,

"Understanding the 'what' ( as in what is occuring) often in these cases requires understanding many interdependencies."

Its not nature verses nurture,

Its nature and nurture.

Everything "living" has a relationship with at least one other thing,

or it would not exist.

The prefrontal cortex is connected to many other areas of the brain,

and has lots of relationships.

One affects the other.

An impaired prefrontal cortex affects many internal and external bodily functions.




BRAIN'S DEPENDENCY ON GLUCOSE

Brain tissue is exclusively dependent on glucose for fuel-

In contrast to other active body organs (e.g., heart, muscle),

which can utilize alternative fuels such as fatty acids,

the brain under normal conditions depends almost exclusively on glucose for its energy needs...



-The PHYSIOLOGY COLORING BOOK, Kapit/Macey/Meisami, BRAIN METABOLISM & BLOOD FLOW IN BRAIN FUNCTION, (Nervous System), P112.




(there is much more to this discussion)

Lunacie
02-09-13, 04:34 PM
*sighs*

mildadhd
02-09-13, 05:32 PM
What came first? The hypoglycemia or the ADHD? All my life my father and myself have exhibited behaviors exactly like hypoglycemia, even down to not being about to actually talk because of low blood sugar. I got tested twice and apparently I am not but ADHD instead. If my father is also ADHD, he is HIGHLY functional (the ****). Has a bad temper but has taught himself programming languages and how to run a ranch simply out of curiosity....hence the **** comment. I wish I had that kind of dedication. I tried to suggest it to my mom and she laughed but it could all just be hyperfocus.

MellyFishButt,


Great questions/points.

Thanks,

More questions are always appreciated.




In this case reduction in blood glucose and ADD impairment are interacting at the same time,

I am not disputing the existence of ADD.

The term hypoglycemia was introduced in this thread by some else.



Hypoglycemia does literally mean low blood sugar,

but is also medical condition other than ADD.

Example,

a person who is hypoglycemic doesn't need to have ADD.(and vice versa)


Information specific to a person with a hypoglycemic condition only,

is a separate topic from the discussion in this thread.


(A person can have ADD and also be hypoglycemic, but not in my examples in this thread)


My examples are focusing on ADDer, (although I am sure there is some interaction between the body and brain systems involving hypoglycemic condition, to keep the discussion as simple as possible, I am discussing only ADD)


When the ADDers blood sugar range, (within the blood sugar spectrum),

is at either end of the spectrum,

either lower or higher,

affects the functioning of the already impaired prefrontal cortex.


Impairment of the prefrontal cortex is made worse by lower blood sugar,

(and higher blood sugar results in added hyperactivity).

The problem is more a result of having an impaired part of prefrontal cortex,

which impairs Autonomic Nervous System.(ANS)


The Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) function is affected by the impairment in the prefrontal cortex.


Also the ANS has two major parts,

the sympathetic and the parasympathetic nervous systems.

These two parts of the ANS are both involved in balancing blood sugar levels that are higher or lower,

through hormonal systems functions,

involving with middle and lower brain functions, (including emotions involved in temper, anger and fear).

interacting with the body's internal and external environment.


Having a impaired prefrontal cortex,

has an influence on many systems in the body,

the ANS is also involved with many hormones functions.

A impaired prefrontal cortex,

impairs the ANS,

which impairs hormone function.

example fluctuating moods, temper...


The ANS function is impaired ,

as a result of impairment in the prefrontal cortex,

and affects almost ever system in the body in some way.

(there is also much more to this topic, but to keep this specific discussion as simple as possible, I will stop here and be more specific in the future)


.

Lunacie
02-09-13, 08:33 PM
MellyFishButt,
>

The term hypoglycemia was introduced in this thread by some else.

>


Information specific to a person with a hypoglycemic condition only,

is a separate topic from the discussion in this thread.

The term hypoglycemia was introduced to this thread in the information
I quoted in the starting post - therefore it is not a separate topic.


When the ADDers blood sugar range, (within the blood sugar spectrum),

is at either end of the spectrum,

either lower or higher,

affects the functioning of the already impaired prefrontal cortex.


Impairment of the prefrontal cortex is made worse by lower blood sugar,

(and higher blood sugar results in added hyperactivity).

The problem is more a result of having an impaired part of prefrontal cortex,

which impairs Autonomic Nervous System.(ANS)


The Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) function is affected by the impairment in the prefrontal cortex.


Also the ANS has two major parts,

the sympathetic and the parasympathetic nervous systems.

These two parts of the ANS are both involved in balancing blood sugar levels that are higher or lower,

through hormonal systems functions,

involving with middle and lower brain functions, (including emotions involved in temper, anger and fear).

interacting with the body's internal and external environment.


Having a impaired prefrontal cortex,

has an influence on many systems in the body,

the ANS is also involved with many hormones functions.

A impaired prefrontal cortex,

impairs the ANS,

which impairs hormone function.

example fluctuating moods, temper...


The ANS function is impaired ,

as a result of impairment in the prefrontal cortex,

and affects almost ever system in the body in some way.

(there is also much more to this topic, but to keep this specific discussion as simple as possible, I will stop here and be more specific in the future)


.

Finally you've shared something that is actually on topic, but you have
not included any links to any of this information.

There is nothing to explain if blood sugar passes the blood/brain barrier,
and how it does that, which is what I was asking.

silivrentoliel
02-09-13, 09:32 PM
There is nothing to explain if blood sugar passes the blood/brain barrier,
and how it does that, which is what I was asking.

Without actually looking the info up, which truthfully, I am too exhausted to do, I would assume that the blood sugar passes through any barrier... I want to say I just studied this, but there's no telling. :lol:

I almost want to say, though, that it passes through membranes in the body via osmosis... I'm not honestly sure though. I would think it's the same way we get any chemical from point A to point B in the body.

I should have looked up that info prior to posting... but I don't want to right now.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 09:40 PM
[QUOTE=Lunacie;1439570]The term hypoglycemia was introduced to this thread in the information
I quoted in the starting post - therefore it is not a separate topic.


I have no problem if anyone else wants to refer to hypoglycemia.

Although because I think it is less complicated to explain in general how low glucose affects ADD,

I won't be referring to hypoglycemia in this thread.



QUOTE=Lunacie;
Finally you've shared something that is actually on topic, but you have
not included any links to any of this information.

There is nothing to explain if blood sugar passes the blood/brain barrier,
and how it does that, which is what I was asking.



Lunacie

I felt like I was on topic. :rolleyes:

I don't have any more general information to add to this thread.

Let me know about any other questions I might have missed.



Opps! I didn't see any question about blood brain barrier?

I will work on it right away.



Peripheral




.

silivrentoliel
02-09-13, 09:45 PM
I have no problem if anyone else wants to refer to hypoglycemia.

Although because I think it is less complicated to explain in general how low glucose affects ADD,

I won't be referring to hypoglycemia in this thread.


She was the OP though... am I not correct?

Her exact question was What is hypoglycemia? How does it affect the brain? so not talking about it, is completely ignoring her original question.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 10:17 PM
She was the OP though... am I not correct?

Her exact question was What is hypoglycemia? How does it affect the brain? so not talking about it, is completely ignoring her original question.


My error,

My interpretation of the OP was...

How does Low Glucose affect ADD?


I will look up the question without considering ADD.



.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 11:07 PM
Question by Lunacie;

There is nothing to explain if blood sugar passes the blood/brain barrier,
and how it does that, which is what I was asking?



All quotes below from:

The PHYSIOLOGY COLORING BOOK, Kapit/Macey/Meisami,
CAPILLARY STRUCTURES & SOLUTE DIFFUSION, (Circulation), P 39.


...In many tissues, such as skeletal, cardiac, and smooth muscle,

the junction between endothelial cells is loose enough to allow passage of most molecules,

but not proteins.


This situation is different in the brain.

Here the junctions are very tight and restraining;

capillaries in the brain are impermeable to many small molecules as well as protein.

This barrier to exchange,

called the blood-brain-barrier,

is circumvented by special facilitated transport systems in the endothelial cells of the brain capillaries that transport such required nutrients as glucose and amino acids.


In contrast,

capillary endothelial cells in the intestines, kidneys, and endocrine glands are riddled with large "windows" called fenestrations,

which provide large surface areas for permeation...







For another source of similar research information see link below:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK28180/



.

mildadhd
02-09-13, 11:40 PM
Questions By Lunacie


1)What is hypoglycemia?

Hypoglycemia (Low blood glucose)


Hypoglycemia happens from time to time to everyone who has diabetes.
Check blood glucose levels to determine when your level is low.
Learn to identify the symptoms of hypoglycemia so you can treat it quickly.
Treat hypoglycemia by raising your blood glucose level with some form of sugar.
Hypoglycemia, sometimes called an insulin reaction, can happen even during those times when you're doing all you can to manage your diabetes. So, although many times you can't prevent it from happening, hypoglycemia can be treated before it gets worse. For this reason, it's important to know what hypoglycemia is, what symptoms of hypoglycemia are, and how to treat hypoglycemia.


(See link below for more information)

http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/treatment-and-care/blood-glucose-control/hypoglycemia-low-blood.html






2)How does it [hypoglycemia] affect the brain?


The brain is normally dependent on glucose for oxidative metabolism and function. Acute iatrogenic hypoglycemia, occurring as a result of insulin excess during the treatment of type 1 diabetes, can cause clinically significant cognitive impairment. In health, such hypoglycemic cognitive dysfunction does not occur. Endogenous counterregulatory mechanisms are activated in response to a small reduction in circulating glucose, preventing more profound hypoglycemia. In diabetes, the inability to reduce circulating insulin levels (1), the failure of glucagon responses (2), sometimes accompanied by defective autonomic and adrenergic responses (3), can allow plasma glucose levels to fall low enough to result in detectable disturbance of cognitive function, ranging from a subtle slowing of reaction times (3) to coma (4).

(See link below for more information)

http://diabetes.diabetesjournals.org/content/50/7/1618.full

Amtram
02-10-13, 11:22 AM
Glucose is fuel for the brain. It gets into the brain through the circulatory system and crosses the blood-brain barrier. Pathological glucose imbalances are caused by (primarily) a malfunctioning pancreas, although there are other factors such as endocrine system problems, kidney disorders, liver function, and poor diet that can change the amount of glucose that is in your body and how well it is processed.

It is the glucose that affects the brain, not really the other way around. We know about the effect on the brain of glucose imbalance from observing patients with hyper- or hypo-glycemia, Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, as well as tests on blood glucose levels in subjects after a set number of hours of fasting versus after consumption of various foods or medications.

What's clear is that too much or too little glucose in the brain can cause a number of different reactions. It can cause emotional or cognitive changes, which could be seen in behavioral manifestations and performance evaluations in various tests. It can also cause dizziness, fainting, coma, and even death.

So glucose levels can make ADHD symptoms worse, and can cause symptoms or behaviors that appear similar to those of ADHD. And while there are individuals who have co-existing ADHD and glucose metabolism problems, one does not cause the other.

i.e., people who have glucose metabolism problems that cause ADHD-like symptoms will stop having those symptoms if their glucose levels are controlled. They have a glucose metabolism problem, not ADHD.

People who have ADHD alone might want to watch their diet and get regular blood tests so their symptoms are not made worse by naturally fluctuating blood glucose levels. People who have both need to be aware of the effects of medication for the one on the symptoms of the other.

Tyler Durden
02-10-13, 11:45 AM
Welcome back amtram...

If you have the symptoms of adhd, you have adhd, I believe Barkley himself said that.

Therefore whether adhd is glucose related or not is academic, it is all 'adhd'.

silivrentoliel
02-10-13, 12:01 PM
Welcome back amtram...

If you have the symptoms of adhd, you have adhd, I believe Barkley himself said that.

Therefore origins, glucose related or not, are academic, it is all 'adhd'.

You are right. Nothing really changes that fact.

I believe however, that her question There has been mention here of Dr. Barkley's reference to low glucose levels in the brain as affecting ADHD symptoms. was more of a "how do low glucose levels affect the already ADHD brain."

(Lunacie, correct me if I misinterpreted, please)

I am not posting the following to be facetious, this is more for me than anything as I get affect/effect confused sometimes.

af·fect
verb (used with object) 1. to act on; produce an effect or change in: Cold weather affected the crops.
2. to impress the mind or move the feelings of: The music affected him deeply.
3. (of pain, disease, etc.) to attack or lay hold of.

noun 4. Psychology . feeling or emotion.
5. Psychiatry. an expressed or observed emotional response: Restricted, flat, or blunted affect may be a symptom of mental illness, especially schizophrenia.
6. Obsolete , affection; passion; sensation; inclination; inward disposition or feeling.


So, her question was more "how does a low glucose level produce an effect or change in an ADHD brain" ... which leads me to question "does it have anything at all to do with making symptoms better or worse?"

In my opinion, Amtram answered it quite well when she said:
What's clear is that too much or too little glucose in the brain can cause a number of different reactions. It can cause emotional or cognitive changes, which could be seen in behavioral manifestations and performance evaluations in various tests. It can also cause dizziness, fainting, coma, and even death.

Tyler Durden
02-10-13, 12:25 PM
Welcome back amtram...

If you have the symptoms of adhd, you have adhd, I believe Barkley himself said that.

Therefore whether adhd is glucose related or not is academic, it is all 'adhd'.

This was what I said, my point was that whether adhd can be glucose related or not does not change whether it is adhd or not, just seemed to be an unnecessary implication of what amtram said.

I believe lunacie's post followed on from the discussions initiated by peripheral, that was what she was referring to in her OP, "there has been mention here..."

Barkley seems to believe glucose in the brain has significance, it should be fully examined in relation to adhd, unfortunately I have no time to go through research right now.

silivrentoliel
02-10-13, 12:34 PM
This was what I said, my point was that whether adhd can be glucose related or not does not change whether it is adhd or not, just seemed to be an unnecessary implication of what amtram said.
I read it as Amtram just explaining another question of Lunacie's. Regardless, you are right... doesn't matter, ADHD is ADHD regardless of glucose levels anywhere in the body.

I believe lunacie's post followed on from the discussions initiated by peripheral, that was what she was referring to in her OP, "there has been mention here..."
I don't normally frequent here... I probably missed it :D

Barkley seems to believe glucose in the brain has significance, it should be fully examined in relation to adhd, unfortunately I have no time to go through research right now.
Well, it does. But I don't think it has much to do with causing/not causing or helping/hindering ADHD. That said, I believe a person feels better when eating properly (and keeping glucose levels normal) vs a person who doesn't... and eating better generally helps anyone feel better... I know when I feel better physically, I don't feel as scattered and nutty as when I am tired or down b/c of allergies.

Amtram
02-10-13, 02:09 PM
I was trying to address the confusion that arises when someone (particularly someone who has high academic/scientific credibility) brings up glucose metabolism and (fill in your condition of choice here) and people assume that there is a correlative or causative relationship between the two conditions.

mildadhd
02-10-13, 03:31 PM
"Signs" and "Symptoms" are different.



If I understand correctly a "symptom" is when a person is discussing something directly related to a specific medical issue.

Example, "symptoms" of ADD are Impulsiveness, Hyperactivity and Inattention.


But Impulsiveness, Hyperactivity and Inattention could be "signs" of both, ADD and Diabetes.


A "symptom" is specific one medical issue.

A "sign" is not specific to one medical issue.

Example: there is a thread about 50 conditions that can mimic ADD, (but are not ADD),these 50 condition have similar "signs" as ADD.(but are not ADD)


Symptom is a conclusion.


Sign is not a specific conclusion, medical issues that are not specific to only one medical condition.

Conclusive tests need to be done to figure out if the "signs" are specific "symptoms" to either ADD or Diabetes.



.

mildadhd
02-10-13, 04:01 PM
Being totally honest. I think I should take blood sugar levels, diet and exercise, way more seriously. On a daily basis. If I want to function at my best level possible. (Removing all discussion of diabetic related issues, and focusing on ADD issues only) The prefrontal cortex of all ADDer's, is hypersensitive to blood sugar fluctuations. Because the prefrontal cortex helps regulate blood sugar levels. A under developed prefrontal cortex will always be extra sensitive to blood sugar levels at both far ends of the normal range of the spectrum. Both lower and higher. Forgive me, but all ADDers should be trying to keep our blood sugar levels as close to homeostasis as possible, eat healthy, exersice, etc, for best function. The reason I think this is important to say, (there is no doubt), that effects of being on the lower side and the higher side of glucose homeostasis can have serious negative consequences in all ADDer's lives.

mildadhd
02-10-13, 04:47 PM
Lunacie,

If the OP question is, how does hypoglycemia affect the brain.

(Removing all discussion of ADD related issues, and focusing on diabetic issues only)

If the person has diabetes related hypoglycemia.

When blood sugar levels are low.

Impairment of both cognitive and emotional responses, will occur.

My father had type I diabetes,

when he would have low blood sugar,(lower than normal homeostasis range), he would act like he was drunk.

If his blood sugar was really low, after acting like he was drunk, he would loose consciousness.

If his blood sugar was really really low, after acting drunk ,after loosing consciousness, he would have seizures.

If his blood sugar was really really really low, after acting drunk, after loosing consciousness and after having seizures, he would have died. (if my mother never gave him fast acting glucose.)

My dad has recently pasted away because of diabetic related dementia/Alzheimer's.

Because every time his blood sugar levels got to low, his brain was scared and deteriorated, starting with the higher cortex.

The brain is almost exclusively dependent on glucose for fuel, running low on fuel is hard on the brain tissue/cells.

If glucose is to low, the brain doesn't function properly.

(No worries about my Dad, he lived longer than most diabetics (age 72) and had little problem with blood circulation, no amputation, eyesight was still OK)

(Unregulated blood sugar can have serious negative affect on a diabetics health, circulation and eyesight)

But negative effects can be lessened with proper nutrition and exercise.

After I was diagnosed for ADD,(age 35)

We would compare "signs" of both ADD and Diabetes.


.

Amtram
02-10-13, 08:07 PM
The thing to keep in mind is that Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes are different from each other in many ways, both in origin and in treatment, and that people who don't have either can still have episodes of blood sugar spikes or drops.

Peripheral, you're right about the diet and exercise - obviously, everyone should be conscious of that. I find that for myself, as much as I adore my carbs, higher protein helps me with my weight and my mental clarity. When I'm being diligent about it, I feel much more able to cope with complex thinking, but it takes complex thinking to stay on track with avoiding the carbs. It's a vicious circle.

Tyler Durden
02-10-13, 08:57 PM
Peripheral I believe the terms "signs" and "symptoms" as you are using them are effectively the same thing, symptoms are not conclusive, like "signs" they are merely observations.

Lunacie
02-11-13, 09:35 AM
Lunacie,

If the OP question is, how does hypoglycemia affect the brain.

(Removing all discussion of ADD related issues, and focusing on diabetic issues only)

If the person has diabetes related hypoglycemia.

When blood sugar levels are low.

Impairment of both cognitive and emotional responses, will occur.

My father had type I diabetes,

when he would have low blood sugar,(lower than normal homeostasis range), he would act like he was drunk.

If his blood sugar was really low, after acting like he was drunk, he would loose consciousness.

If his blood sugar was really really low, after acting drunk ,after loosing consciousness, he would have seizures.

If his blood sugar was really really really low, after acting drunk, after loosing consciousness and after having seizures, he would have died. (if my mother never gave him fast acting glucose.)

My dad has recently pasted away because of diabetic related dementia/Alzheimer's.

Because every time his blood sugar levels got to low, his brain was scared and deteriorated, starting with the higher cortex.

The brain is almost exclusively dependent on glucose for fuel, running low on fuel is hard on the brain tissue/cells.

If glucose is to low, the brain doesn't function properly.

(No worries about my Dad, he lived longer than most diabetics (age 72) and had little problem with blood circulation, no amputation, eyesight was still OK)

(Unregulated blood sugar can have serious negative affect on a diabetics health, circulation and eyesight)

But negative effects can be lessened with proper nutrition and exercise.

After I was diagnosed for ADD,(age 35)

We would compare "signs" of both ADD and Diabetes.


.

Thanks for sharing this. I'm sorry about your dad. Mine didn't have
diabetes but he did have dementia for the last few years of his life.

We didn't really talk to each other, so no comparing of symptoms.

However, when my sister was treated for cancer, the chemo caused
symptoms that are very similar to the symptoms of ADHD.

She didn't really get it when I said "Welcome to my life."

I mean, I wasn't dying of ovarian cancer, but she'd only had what is
called "chemo brain" for less than a year.

I'd had the same symptoms for my whole life.

It seems odd how many other conditions can mimic the symptoms of
ADHD - at least in adults.

Maybe by comparing how other conditions affect our brains, we will come
closer to understanding what causes ADHD - and find better treatments.

mildadhd
02-11-13, 03:43 PM
Lunacie,

In this thread we have explored how low glucose affects brain function.

I am going start a different thread exploring the response of an underdeveloped prefrontal cortex, involving glucose regulation, as well, as how these factors effect other areas of the brain (and body) involved in glucose (blood sugar) regulation.

Hoping for everyone's input.

Side Note:Thanks for the support. For clarity my father and I compared brain responses to his Diabetes and my ADD. (not his dementia symptoms directly)

SB_UK
02-22-13, 02:50 PM
A little clarification.

I'm fairly sure that ADDers are hyper sensitive to blood glucose variation.
So - what might be considered perfectly acceptable variation in the nonADDer - will send us into spaciness or hyperactivity.
So - that - we're in our element when blood glucose levels are 'constant'.

We're metabolically more efficient, but the flipside of this new characteristic - is that we're stress sensitive.

Now - the obvious question is - why ?

To which the answer is - that (from a previous thread with GBYR) - that we have altered the relationship between the big boy metabolic pathways of glycolysis, the citric acid cycle and the mitochondrial electron transport chain (perhaps squishing them into 1 pathway by munging them together) in order to make us more aerobic (energy flow *all* via the mitochondrion and not via an end-point of glycolysis (ie ATP generation halting at glycolysis)).

The underlying change in our metabolic pathways described in this post comes from feel (of life as an ADDer) and years of staring :-) at classical biochemical pathways.

SB_UK
02-22-13, 03:01 PM
I just need to add one further point - and that is - that just as our metabolic pathway has been evolutionarily selected for increased likelihood of survival (aerobic metabolism is more efficient)
- *always* evolutionary selection - survival of the fittest -
.. ... just as our metabolic pathway has been selected - so has our more connected mind type (described on other threads in this forum)
... ... meaning that we're more likely to 'see' the connectedness of 'stuff' out there in reality.

Problem is - that when one mixes a mind which sees connectivity and a body which is stress sensitive - that really bad things happen to us.

So - we see global warming, we see the car we're in or the heating we're using contributing to it - we see the actual connectivity - can't turn our mind away from these - and so we see out own contribution to species demise/a worsening of the collective lot.

So - just to be clear - nonADDers see the connection - but we cannot not see the connection - which when scaled up - results in ADDers (together with our increased stress sensitivity) being ripped apart in this current world we have.

There's an obvious solution; problem is - is that people may not be interested in complete redefintiion of society on a global level.

SB_UK
02-22-13, 03:06 PM
Just to repeat how important this idea is - hyper sensitivity to blood glucose variation (stress) is the core problem AND advantage which the ADDer possesses.

In a stupid, immoral world - and if ADDer is lucky enough to gain an education by self-study (formal education teaches us nothing)
- then the lucky educated ADDer is greeted with the most terrible stress, gained - the eyes to see the immorality of one's fellow 'man'.

It's really stressful to see people ripping their fellow man apart for money.

We need to address this problem at its centre - and transition to a world in which money does not so lead man astray.

Human beings aren't intrinsically bad - only turn out that way in a nasty, competitive environment where survival is only possible through immoral behaviour.

SB_UK
02-22-13, 03:14 PM
A final idea - which I don't think'll be popular.
I think that the production of water (in aerobic metabolism) is actually what's powering our evolution.
We're looking at the energy produced - and thinking that this is the point of the process ... ... but I don't think that's right.
I think that the energy generated (ATP) and the stuff we do with it - is all secondary to mitochondria turning the handle on water production.
In a way - I think that what we think of as fun - is a waste product of the mitochondria - needing its vessel to do 'things' which it 'enjoys' - to keep the handle turning on aerobic respiration.

SB_UK
02-22-13, 03:44 PM
Connecting to AD(H)D-I
(1) --- Brain fog ---
So all ADDers know about the brain fog (http://www.care2.com/greenliving/5-causes-of-brain-fog.html).
Hypersensitivity to blood glucose elevation/stress 'd do it.
(2) --- Reactive Movement (squirming) ---
We all know about moving to concentrate (eg classroom) or when stressed (before/after an interview).
All we're doing is trying to burn/normalize glucocorticoid mobilized blood glucose levels back down to an unswerving normal.
(3) --- Fatigue ---
And then there's the cycles of highs (stress driven - gotta' make that deadline!) and lows (fatigue) - whenever there's a high there's a low - which are all, once again related to blood glucose variation (what goes up (hyper) - overshoots down (hypo) - or to be much more accurate hypersensitivity to perhaps what may prove to be not even particularly great (in absolute magnitude relative to nonADDers) perturbations in blood glucose values.

We're biochemically sculpted to operate optimally with no real variation (I can't put error bars on the observation - some variation will be permitted - but not particularly much) in our 'blood glucoses'.

SB_UK
02-22-13, 04:09 PM
A few more (just to make the point):
(4) --- Easily overwhelmed ---
Combine #43 (interconnected mind) with hypersensitivity to stress/blood glucose - and each and every single task we're given 'explodes' from small to Universal in scope.
Buying a loaf of bread becomes a crusade into fasting to minimise use of limiting resources.

(5) --- Requires 'motivation' (stimulant medication) in a bottle + the paradoxical effect of stimulants on ADDers (to calm us down) ---
Continuing on from #43 - whether we want to see that we see it or not - we can't find motivation to perform tasks which our minds can see (if we choose to look in the direction our mind is facing) are not worth doing (will not result in a beneficial outcome pertaining to all of species happy survival prospects).
I think that stimulant medication may simply be switching off the stress response.
So - the paradoxical effect of stimulant medication arises - because there're 2 roles for stimulant - to stimulate and as stress-relief; the same chemical stimulates nonADDers - and turns off the anxious state (calms) ADDers.

(6) --- Daydream believers ---
A particularly low energy usage state of mind (low EEG also) - permissive of/compatible with our low blood glucose requirement - a 'screen-saver' state in which we're happy - we operate (in this state) well within our required metabolic bounds (bounds for acceptable blood glucose variation in the ADDer).

SB_UK
02-22-13, 04:15 PM
It's important to note that heightened conscience/stress sensitivity is a death sentence in current society.
So - to any who'd think that the argument I'm describing portrays ADHD in a positive light ... ... that is, in fact not true in current society -
the argument I'm offering bodes much more poorly on our plight in current society ... ... because it implies that we have no scope for improvement, no scope for medication to help ... etc ... are destined to dissolve under stress if we wish to survive in this current rotten, competitive, vicious social infrastructure.

It's (ADHD) (in the slightly older) a disorder of an inescapable conscience in a world where a conscience is incompatible with survival.
You must behave immorally to survive in this current world.

SB_UK
02-22-13, 04:21 PM
I think all of the dots are connected.
Just to emphasise - exactly as I wrote 10 years ago - that the solution to ADD - required an ADDer (with the unique ADDer experiential perspective) to solve.

The observations made by nonADD world, were, of course ... .. correct.

They just couldn't connect the dots - because of 'speciality' mind.

Disease researchers see the diseased as defective.

In our case - disease/disorder isn't a sign that we're defective - but that the environment in which we're exposed is diseased/disordered
- of parrot learning educational systems,
- of striving towards money,
- of competing against our fellow man,
- of destroying the planet for all future generations of all species


... ... is what we're the antidote (eventually) for.