Introducing Q&A With Dr. Richard Bernstein

Can over-hydration or dehydration affect blood sugar level?

Well, sure it does. The more you increase your blood volume by drinking water, the more you’re going to dilute your blood sugar. That goes without saying, but it’s not a smart way of lowering your blood sugar. If you drink too much water, you can cause hyponatremia, which means too little sodium, and this can lead to fatal results. It can cause edema of your brain and so on, and I do not recommend over-consuming water. 

I stumbled on a table recently in some article about what people of various body types require in terms of water replacement, and it’s not large amounts. Basically, I recommend that people drink when they’re thirsty, and don’t overdo it.

My doctor says that I need at least 65-70 grams of carbohydrates per meal, because the body needs a certain amount of carbohydrates. To your knowledge, have there been any studies showing the minimum quantity of carbohydrates the body needs?

Ask him to show you one study proving his claim. My claim was proven by the history of the human race. For the majority of the couple of hundred thousand years that humans have been around, carbohydrates haven’t been available. There may have been a few leafy vegetables that you could get hold of, not the concentrated carbohydrates that the American Diabetes Association is pushing. 

Low carbohydrate is what has been around for eons, so what your doctor told you is absolutely false. Humans can survive on just protein and essential fats because if the body is deprived of carbohydrates it can convert up to 36 percent of protein calories to glucose. 

In fact, we know that before the Eskimos were exposed to the Modern American Diet (MAD), they had no carbohydrates, and ate only fat and protein. This means that humans can do very well with fat and protein. The Eskimos did not get atherosclerosis or heart disease until they started eating carbohydrates. 

You might ask your doctor to show you the study that demonstrates that 65-70 grams of carbohydrates per meal are necessary for humans, but he will not have such a study, because none exists.

Dr. Richard K. Bernstein is a long-time advocate for a low-carb approach to the management of type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Diagnosed 60 years ago with type 1, Dr. Bernstein pioneered the concept of reducing insulin use and blood sugar levels by reducing carbohydrate, rather than protein and fat, intake, a now accepted approach that the diabetes establishment resisted for years. The Long Island-based  physician, whose practice treats only patients with diabetes and prediabetes, has published four books on diet and blood sugar control. His Diabetes Solution website has extensive information on his personal history and diabetes management philosophy.

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