View Full Version : Can someone please answer a question?

Welcome to the Active Low-Carber Forums

Support for Atkins diet, Protein Power, Neanderthin (Paleo Diet), CAD/CALP, Dr. Bernstein Diabetes Solution and any other healthy low-carb diet or plan, all are welcome in our lowcarb community. Forget starvation and fad diets -- join the healthy eating crowd! You may register by clicking here, it's free!

Sun, Apr-28-02, 11:47
My daughter has a friend that is 12 years old. She is Very overweight....over 300 lbs. I don't know exactly what she weighs because our scale doesn't go that high. She is tall, but very heavy. I have tried to get her guardian to put the girls on a low carb diet to no avail. She completely believes in the low fat, high carb diet.

I took the girls blood sugar after supper last night...about 1 hr after she ate and it was 130. I took a fasting blood sugar this morning and it was 155. I know this is too high for a fasting blood sugar. Her guardian is coming to pick her up in a while and I need to know how bad is this? Should I encourage her to take the girl to a doctor for a glucose tolerance test? I want to be sure before I alarm anyone.

I would greatly appreciate your advice.

doreen T
Sun, Apr-28-02, 12:01
Yes, a fasting blood sugar of 155 is too high, and may indicate that she has health problems beyond her obesity ... Insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes are becoming more and more common in children, unfortunately. Or she may be taking medications ... cortisone for asthma or allergies will affect weight gain and higher blood sugars. Etc ....

I would focus any "alarm" on the blood sugar reading, and encourage this young lady's guardian to seek medical attention. At this point, without knowing the diagnosis, it wouldn't be helpful to recommend a "diet" although suggesting that she cut out all sugar, sweets and processed starches might be well-received. Perhaps finding out that there's health problems beyond just the weight problem mihgt convince the guardian to make some changes :)


Lisa N
Sun, Apr-28-02, 12:22
Hi Spring...

Yes, 155 is too high for a fasting blood sugar, even for an adult. Normal ranges for fasting blood sugars are between 80 and 110. Fasting readings that are consistantly over 120 are considered indicative of diabetes and with her weight being that high I would for sure say that she most likely has insulin resistance. Doreen is giving good advice...suggest that her guardian cut out sugars, starches and sweets; that might be better received than suggesting low carb. Personally, I would stress the blood sugar readings and very much encourage a visit to her doctor for further testing. If she does have diabetes and it goes untreated, it could lead to more serious health problems than what she has now. I hope for the child's sake that the guardian listens to you and follows up on it. You could even try doing a random blood sugar check with the guardian right there to show her that you're not making this up.

Sun, Apr-28-02, 15:43
Her guardian just left....I tried talking to her. I don't know if she listened or not. I did suggest that she have the girl checked out. Really, I don't know if she will or not. This child is in serious trouble. She can hardly breathe...she has no friends besides my daughter. Her guardian seems to resent any suggestions I make and the girl refuses to cut back on sugar and carbs on her own. So, I am afraid that we will just have to wait and see if the seed we planted will take root.

Thank you so much for your answers. I appreciate it. I knew it was too high, but not really sure if it was high enough to really be concerned. I have known this child since she was born....she was a tiny little thing until she hit about 6 years old and then just "blew up". I do so hope that she will be checked and get the help she needs.

doreen T
Sun, Apr-28-02, 16:08
Does this girl go to the same school as your daughter? Would there be any resources at the school ... counsellors, a nurse or social worker ... that you could express your concerns to? It sounds like more going on here ... definitely an endocrine disorder, and not necessarily diabetes (her post-meal blood sugar wasn't overly high). I'm thinking adrenal dysfunction, possibly Cushing's syndrome.

Having a third-party get involved might be a good idea .. since you don't want to jeopardize her friendship with your daughter. Good luck to you :)


Sun, Apr-28-02, 23:09
I wholeheartedly agree that she probably has an endocrine disorder...Cushings seems a definite possibillity. I have tried for years to encourage, first her mother and now her guardian to check into this.

I rented a house on my farm to her mother when Katie was a very little girl. My daughter loved the little girl like a little sister. My daughter is about 6 years older than Katie, so they do not go to the same school. Katie's, now guardian lived with them in the house. Katie was a normal sized girl...my daughter used to pick her up and swing her around. When Katie was about 6 years old, I noticed she was gaining weight very rapidly. I didn't see her for a week or two and the weight gain was unbelievable. She developed stretch marks all over her back, stomach, thighs.....just everywhere.

I knew very little about endocrine disorders then so I talked to her mother about taking her to an eating disorders clinic that I knew about. She later told me that she had taken Katie there, but they had found no problem. I later found out that she had never taken Katie to the clinic.

They moved from the house when Katie was about 10. My daughter would go visit Katie on occassion. Katie was bigger every time that we saw her. One day Katie's mother picked my daughter up to visit overnight. On the way home the mother made a stop at an isolated house in the country. She had recently married and her husband went into the house and Katie's mother confided to my daughter that her husband was there buying drugs.

My daughter also found out that Katie was being abused by the new husband. We tried talking to Katie's mother, but she had gotten hooked on the drugs herself and just didn't seem to care. I contacted the lady that used to live with them....Katie's now guardian.... and she and Katie's older sister obtained custody of Katie. Katie is finally happy and living with her guardian who truly loves the girl. The long and short of it is that I don't want to shake up Katies life again. I really do not want to involve school counselers etc again. I feel like we have interfered in Katie's life about as much as we can....except for trying to talk to her guardian.

Katie has so many signs of an endocrine disorder. She has the weight gain, the dark areas of skin on her neck etc., the oily skin and hair and irregular periods. She started her periods at 10, but has only had a few since then. I thought that maybe showing her guardian that Katie might have symptoms of, at least, diabetes might encourage her to have her checked out. I am hopeful that she will think about it and decide to take her.

Sorry about the length of this. This has been on my mind for a long time and I guess I just needed to talk about this little girls problems with others that understand.

Lisa N
Mon, Apr-29-02, 18:27
...is for good people to do nothing".

I know that you feel that you have "interfered" in Katie's life too much already, but for Katie's sake please be willing to do so again if necessary. It seems that you know a fair amount about endocrine disorders, so you also would then know what will happen to Katie eventually if this is what she has and it goes untreated. Failure to provide medical treatment for a child who is obviously in need of it could be considered neglect. It's obvious that you care a great deal for Katie and have her best interests at heart. She has been a lucky child so far to have had you around to "interfere" as much as you have or her life could now be very different. Doesn't this child ever go to a pediatrician? If she does, I'm amazed that they could have missed this for so long! 'Nuff said. You will have to be the one to decide how much you are willing to do to intervene, but I would strongly encourage you to continue to be an advocate on behalf of Katie and her health and welbeing. If it were my daughter's health at stake, I would want someone as caring as you to advocate for her in my absence. I will be praying for both of you.

Mon, Apr-29-02, 22:14
Thanks Lisa for your imput. I will continue trying my best to help Katie. I know if I push too hard I will loose the friendship of her guardian and then Katie may not be allowed to even come to my house. I am so hoping that I can just convince her guardian about the blood sugar and get the girl to a doctor.

My daughter has similar problems to Katie, but her weight is not as high. I keep hoping that they will see how well my daughter is doing on low carb and finally listen to us. My daughter got up to 159 at 5' tall. She has been low carbing since February and although her weight loss has been slow, in a way, it is consistently going down. She is at 146 now and feels so much more energetic. My daughter even went so far as to show Katie's guardian the stretch marks on her stomach to prove to her that she had a similar problem to Katie's.

The odd thing is that the guardian just went to an endocrinologist for menopausal problems that she is having. She was raving about how good he was! I took the doctors name and told her that I wanted my daughter to see him to confirm that her lack of periods, sudden weight gain etc were probably due to PCOS or another endocrine disorder. I am hoping that she will see that Katie should go also.

My daughter and I had to learn on our own about what was causing her problems because all her gynocologist wanted to do was put her on BCP's. It seems ironic to me that by talking to her about her own menopausal problems, we may have found a good endocrinologist for my daughter :)

I am afraid to push too much or get the school involved because then Katie would have no place to go if she was taken away from her guardian. I have already taken on one child that needed a place to stay and simply do not have the financial resouces to take on any more.

Tue, Apr-30-02, 15:07
Spring, I am so thankful for people like you in this world. One day Katie will appreciate all that you have done for her. I will continue to pray for you for guidance as well as for Katie, she's so fortunate to have you and your daughter in her life.


Lisa N
Tue, Apr-30-02, 17:06
Birth control pills for PCOS? Yikes! They did that to me when I was 18 because of irregular periods without doing any testing to find out WHY I was having irregular periods (PCOS) and it was the worst thing they could have done. Sure...I had regular periods, but those BCP's shut down my ovaries permanently (according to a fertility specialist 10 years later). Glad you researched it and are taking her to an endocrinologist. BTW...low carbing is very good for PCOS because there's a lot more to it than just irregular periods (like insulin resistance and eventually diabetes). That's why they call it a syndrome, because it involves multiple body systems.

Wed, May-01-02, 03:43
Lisa, my daughter was 14 when she was put on PCP's. She had not had a period in 3 months so I took her to a gynocologist. They did a sonogram and said everything looked good....gave her Provera to start her period and then started her on the pill. The result was stomach upset, weight gain and lethargy. I took her off of them after 3 months. After not having a period for 6 months, my daughter wanted to go back on them. She went back on them for about six months....had regular periods, but the stomach upset, weight gain and lethargy returned. Again, she went off of the pill.

Then my daughter read an article about PCOS and I started researching the problem. All we are doing now is the low carb diet and chromium. She was on Vitex for awhile. I am not sure whether that helped or not. After a couple of weeks on low carb, she had a slight period....she skipped the next and this month she spotted a little bit. I am hopeful that this at least means that her system is regulating itself somewhat.

One question please...how long did you stay on the pill? I am so hopeful that she wasn't on it long enough to do permanent damage. I am also sorry that they did that to you also. It seems like we are their guinia pigs and they usually go for the easy answer to a very complicated problem.

Happy2lose, thank you for the good wishes, but I feel like I am treading where angels fear to tread. Katie's guardian is very protective of her and has delt with people condemning Katie because of her weight so long that she seems to feel like I am just another person picking on Katie for being overweight. The hard part is trying to convince her that I am not just another person trying to get Katie to go on a diet because she is overweight. I am trying to explain that I am not condeming Katie....I am trying to tell her that it is not her fault and that Katie has an endocrine problem that can be lived with if she gets help. It is just hard to get past her guardians initial "protect Katie" impulse when someone mentions her weight. I can understand how she feels, because I have seen Katie hurt by people's cruelty so many times. I have seen my own daughter hurt by peoples attitude. My daughter would actually hide from people that she hadn't seen for a few years if we happened to see them in a store or something because she didn't want them to see how much weight she had gained. It broke my heart.

Lisa N
Wed, May-01-02, 14:53
I was on birth control pills for 8 years straight. Nobody ever told me that you have to stop taking them once in a while to give your body a chance to rest from them. I don't think a few months at a time would do as much damage as years at a time. I wish I had known about low carbing when I was your daughter's age or I could have avoided a LOT of problems later on. Kids and even adults can be so cruel when your body shape doesn't match the socially accepted norm. Docs still can't figure out how I got pregnant since a couple of years of fertility drugs did nothing for me and we had given up and were considering adoption. Even the gynecologist (who is also the fertility specialist who said it just wasn't going to happen) who saw me for all my pregnancies just shrugs and says "it's a miracle".

Fri, May-03-02, 04:43
I tried to post under my "question" topic but for some reason it wouldn't let me...so, I will post this here. After over a year of no periods, my daughter has started her first normal period. I think this proves, at least to me, that PCOS is related to blood sugar and insulin levels. She has been low carbing since Feb. The first month, she had a slight period. She skipped the second, but this month she has started a full period. Lisa, I tried to tell you under the othertopic, that I am so glad that you had your miracle. I love to hear when good things happen to good people.
Now, it seems, that we have our own little miracle. My daughter has lost 14 pounds and is gettin her system back on track.

doreen T
Fri, May-03-02, 08:36
hi Spring,

I'm so happy that things are working out for your daughter. It's crazy how the answer can be so simple (diet, lifestyle changes) yet drs still can only whip out the prescripton pad as if that's the only solution. I hope she has continued good health and return to normal cycles and functioning.

I'm not sure why you couldn't post?? Did you get an error message? Anyway, I've merged your post into the desired thread for you, so that it doesn't get lost down the message list.

take care :)


Fri, May-03-02, 16:11
Thanks Doreen...I got no error message...my typing would just disappear. I tried for two days, off and on, thinking it was a problem with my keyboard or something. Then I tried on a new topic and it let me post....crazy! Anyway, thanks for moving it for me and yes, sometimes, the answer is so simple it goes way "over the heads" of the doctors.

Lisa N
Fri, May-03-02, 17:56

So glad to hear that things are working out well for your daughter on this WOE. Like I said, I wish I had known about this years ago. The heavy use of prescription drugs isn't completely the doctors' fault, in my opinion. Many people feel that they haven't been "treated" unless they leave the doctor's office with a prescription in hand and will often pressure the docs to prescribe something even when they don't need it. I saw it very often when I worked in a doctor's office and could only shake my head at it. All the drug commercials on TV don't help, either. You know the ones, "Ask your doctor if this drug is right for you..."
I think people don't hear the "if this is right for you" part and only hear "Ask your doctor for this drug". My dad (who is a doctor himself) always hated those commercials because he knew that it would bring a rash of patients asking for the latest and greatest drug whether they needed it or not. On the other hand, I think many docs ARE way too quick to prescribe drugs when diet or some other more natural alternative would work just as well if not better...an unfortunate result of CYA medicine in this lawsuit happy world.

Sat, May-04-02, 05:07
My dad was a Chiropractor though not an MD. He was a good chiropractor. I have tried some since he died and I couldn't believe the difference. He worked with a local ostheopath and always referred anyone that needed an MD to him. The Ostheopath always referred anyone that needed a chiropractor to my dad. They were a beautiful team.

My daughter is having a perfectly normal period so far. Normal bleeding...no bad cramping. Before, when she used to have periods on her own, the cramping was awful. This time, she feels good and hasn't had to take the pain medication:) Needless to say, we are thrilled to find a WOE that works to control the sugar and insulin levels. The results seem to be amazing....normal blood sugars, we check hers regularly....weight loss and a normal cycle....not to mention how much more energy she has!

Lisa N
Sat, May-04-02, 15:35
Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best ones.

Fri, Jun-28-02, 22:11
Spring, I am really impressed by the time, caring, and effort you are putting into improving your daughter's situation and caring about Karie.

You say that her guardian really loves her; is there any way that you can discuss this with her and mention that sometimes we get so afraid that something might be wrong with those we love (especially when they are so young) that we try to rationalize the situation?

Wishing you good luck on your continuing quest,


Fri, Oct-04-02, 10:52
Hi I was reading through this thread and thought I would add my two cents - reading about Katies story made me think of my own and I was recently diagnosed with PCOS after many years of suffering. I was going to offer this as a something that could be followed up on - but another poster had already suggested that.

However I did notice the conversation drifting into PCOS & BCP's I just wanted to add that there are new BCP's on the market that are good at helping to control PCOS - high estrogen BCP's are DEFINITELY a no no and will make the symptoms worse. However not all bcps are bad for PCOS women - some help to control the formation of cysts which in themselves further perpetuate the hormone imbalance. While I don't advocate taking BCP's for extended periods of time - NOT taking them COULD make the symptoms of PCOS much much worse. So there is a fine balance between treating it and accepting the risks of the treatment, and not treating it and accepting the health risks of out of control symptoms.
I think if a girl/woman can keep her symptoms under control without the use of bcp's then that is the best way to go. But if not then take the BCP's especially the new formulations like Yasmin. But - that's just my own opinion!

btw - I'm not a strict low carb diet but I've eliminated all simple carbs and sugars and have reduced my complex carb intake (slowly) - so far it seems to be working. I've lost 17 lbs in the last 2 months more than I've ever been able to lose before!