Blood Sugar

#221: Jody Stanislaw, ND- Blood Sugar & Insulin Balancing Tips from a Type 1 Diabetic

by Mike Mutzel



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About Jody Stanislaw

Dr. Jody Stanislaw is Naturopathic Doctor who has been studying the negative effects of sugar since being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 7. She draws on her 30+ years of experience and teaches life-changing information about how to successfully manage Type 1 that most physicians have never learned.

Jody Patients from over thirty states and ten countries have worked with her via her virtual practice.


Jody’s TED talk

Interview Show Notes



05:06 To stay insulin sensitive, we should work out no less than every other day. A hard workout/exercise can make you more insulin sensitive for up to 48 hours. If you do not work out for 2 days in a row, you need more insulin. GLUT4 receptors upregulate when you exercise and stay up for a day or two.

06:56 The average person with type 1 diabetes is on high dose insulin and eating as many carbs as they want. Fewer than 25 percent of America’s 3 million type 1 diabetics have decent blood sugar levels.

07:16 Dr. Stanislaw uses Dexcom blood sugar monitor, which she feels is the most accurate sensor. She has a sensor in her arm which reads the blood glucose level in the extra cellular fluids and interstitial fluids, which have a 20 minute delay from the blood glucose level. This is a vast improvement over poking her finger 15 times a day. The Dexcom has alarms that alert when her range is beyond her 80 and 120.

11:05 Rather than a subcutaneous insulin shot, Dr. Stanislaw injects intramuscularly. The increased blood flow in the muscles increases the absorption of the insulin twice as fast. It hurts more to inject into muscle.

13:09 Insulin is the pickup truck for glucose. In a non-diabetic, consumed carbohydrates break down to glucose, which flows out of the digestive tract and is absorbed into the bloodstream. This signals the pancreas beta cells to make insulin. Insulin picks up the glucose and feeds it to the cells. This prevents excess glucose from floating in the blood.

14:15 There are insulin receptors on muscle cells, liver cells and fat. The brain, like many other cells, does not need insulin in order to take on glucose.

14:42 Without insulin, blood glucose levels would become dangerously high. Too much glucose in the blood damages the walls arteries, causing microvascular damage which damages organs, and leads to high lifetime high blood sugar levels.

15:31 Injected insulin is a slow response. If you drink a slurpy or eat a bagel, your blood sugar level spikes from 80 to 300 in 30 minutes (80 to 120 is normal).  Insulin works on its own time. It may peak in an hour, maybe an hour and a half, while you have a spike in blood sugar and a massive dose of insulin eventually working. Too much sugar in your blood makes you irritable. The recommendation from the diabetes association is to eat what you want and take more insulin. Even at diabetes camps, they eat bread, pasta and pancakes.

17:15 The more protein and fat you have with your meal, the slower your digestion. If your injected insulin hits and your food hasn’t digested, you blood sugar tanks and you could pass out and die.

18:23 Dr. Stanislaw’s general recommendation for her type 1 diabetes patients: Low carb and whole food. It takes you off the blood sugar rollercoaster.

18:36 No insulin means that blood sugar levels spike, causing massive damage throughout the body: blindness, heart disease, kidney failure, stroke, gangrene, and limb amputations. Excess sugar over years and decades damages nerve cells and arteries.

19:07 Diabetic ketoacidosis (not ketosis) can kill you. Ketosis is a result of burning ketones for fuel. A byproduct of burning fat is ketone acids. When there is no insulin, your body thinks there is no fuel and burns fat at a dangerously high rate. The byproduct of burning ketones creates a highly acidic state, throwing off your body’s pH. This can be caused by a malfunctioning insulin pump.

20:59 You always need a certain level of insulin in your body. You can pass out and die if you have no insulin and you can pass out and die if you have too much insulin.

22:52 Exercise and insulin requirements: Exercise makes you more insulin sensitive. A fit person who exercises will need less insulin.

23:40 The glucose cell receptors are called GLUT4 (glucose transporter 4). Insulin carries glucose. It connects to a GLUT4 receptor on cell, which opens the cell and allows glucose in. When you exercise, the concentration of GLUT4 receptors is upregulated for 24 to 48 hours after, making you super insulin sensitive. During exercise, some of the GLUT4s don’t need insulin and will take in glucose without insulin.

24:43 If you have more muscle mass in general, you have more GLUT4 all the time. Weight lifting increases insulin sensitivity. It is more effective at this than cardio. Muscles are glucose hungry.

25:45 Dr. Stanislaw makes sure that her insulin levels are low before she starts to exercise. You don’t need to eat every time you exercise. Exercise makes the insulin more powerful and acts as though you just gave yourself a shot of insulin.

28:34 HIIT spikes adrenaline. Cortisol tells your liver, a major glycogen store, to break glycogen into glucose. Your bloodstream is then flooded with glucose.

33:01 To stay insulin sensitive, we should work out no less than every other day. A hard workout/exercise can make you more insulin sensitive for up to 48 hours. If you do not work out for 2 days in a row, you need more insulin. GLUT4 receptors upregulate when you exercise and stay up for a day or two.

32:59 Fewer than 25 percent of America’s 3 million type 1 diabetics have decent blood sugar levels. Seventy-five percent of Americans with type 1 diabetes is on high dose insulin and eating as many carbs as they want.

34:18 If you get sick, even before you start showing symptoms, your insulin sensitivity crashes. If you take a steroid shot, your blood sugar won’t come down for days. Dr. Stanislaw has a 7 page handout listing all of the reasons why your blood sugar goes high or low that have nothing to do with food.

36:27 Poor sleep causes inflammation and stress. With poor sleep you will have lower insulin sensitivity and you will have an influx of stress hormones, creating an inflammatory condition. Stress, good or bad, chronic or acute, raises blood sugar, requiring more insulin. Sleep decreases inflammation.

38:45 Yoga and meditation affects insulin. You must love yourself into healing.

40:12 The four pillars are the foundation for your wellbeing: mindset (emotional health, spirituality, connection, and love for yourself), sleep, exercise and food.

41:21 Excess insulin makes you gain weight. The more weight you gain, the weaker your insulin sensitivity and require more insulin.

43:04 Excess insulin correlates to higher risk of certain cancers.

44:04 When your blood sugar is high, you have too much glucose in your brain. Too much glucose kills brain cells. Alzheimer’s is called Type 3 diabetes. Nerves do not have GLUT4 receptors.

45:42 The main complications for type 1 or type 2 diabetes are heart disease, strokes, kidney failure, blindness, Alzheimer’s, gangrene and soft tissue injuries.

46:53 Hemoglobin A1C: Hemoglobin is a protein in the red blood cell. Glucose sticks to it when blood sugar levels are elevated. Red blood cells live from 2 to 4 months. The hemoglobin A1C test queries red blood cells to see how much glucose is stuck to them. This gives you the average blood sugar level.

47:22 The hemoglobin A1C test is often inaccurate. Sixteen to 25 percent of lab values are inaccurate. The number can be skewed by red blood cell disorder, the length of life of the blood cell and differing glycation rates. An average can mask extremes in high/low blood sugar. The best average is provided by the downloaded data from a glucose monitor.

51:22 There is no such thing as essential carbohydrates. Protein is easily turned into glucose, if the body has not been given carbs.

52:05 Fat raises blood sugar indirectly. Once fat has been digested into fatty acids, the fatty acids traverse the blood stream. They can stay in the blood stream for several hours. Fatty acids in the blood stream cause a drop in insulin sensitivity. A big fatty meal makes your insulin sensitivity weaker.

53:26 Children are often recommended to have a high amount of carbs (These usually end up being refined/processed foods) to support growth. However, high blood sugar does not allow them to grow. Feed children low carb to keep blood sugar levels in a healthy range. Monitor growth, energy and how they are doing in school.

55:08 Beta cell preservation/protection is part of type 1 diabetes treatment. If your beta cells are dying out, don’t force them to work hard. Eat low carb. Anything above a 120 – 140 kills beta cells via glucotoxicity. Beta cells can come back. Weight train. Dr. Stanislaw has a supplement protocol for beta cell preservation.

57:19 Gut healing may reverse autoimmunity. Dr. Stanislaw has a gut healing protocol to bring down inflammation and autoantibodies.

58:49 A type 1 diabetic is not diagnosed until 80% of their beta cells are dead. There is a way to test the strength of your beta cells.

59:24 Puberty causes immense insulin resistance in both boys and girls.

59:39 Dr. Stanislaw’s desert island nutrient is gymnema. It has been shown to increase beta cell mass.

1:00:11 Dr. Stanislaw’s favorite exercise for diabetes is weight training, building muscle mass.

1:05:28 Dr. Stanislaw’s elevator pitch: Eat whole food that nature grew, not processed foods.


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