We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Hypoglycemic Effect?

By Kathie Scheidler
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A hypoglycemic effect takes place when an agent, such as a food, herb or medication, causes the insulin in the blood to quickly drop. This usually happens only in diabetics. A hypoglycemic effect can be very harmful to the body.

Hypoglycemia is commonly referred to as low blood glucose or low blood sugar. This condition normally takes place as a side effect of diabetes, because of unstable blood sugar levels. When it does happen in a non-diabetic, it is the result of a disease, a medication, a tumor or a deficiency of an enzyme or hormone.

When the glucose in the blood has dropped below a normal level, hypoglycemia has occurred. This happens if an agent with a hypoglycemic effect is ingested into the bloodstream. When this happens, an individual's blood glucose level will rise at such a fast rate that the pancreas overreacts. This produces large amounts of insulin, causing the glucose in the blood to spiral dramatically downward.

There are many symptoms of hypoglycemia. These generally include headache, fatigue, hunger, nervousness and irritability. In extreme cases, symptoms include muscle pain, fainting, excessive sweating, memory loss and hallucinations. There have been cases, although rare, when death has occurred.

There are many foods that have a hypoglycemic effect. Foods high in simple carbohydrates, or simple sugars, normally have this effect on the body. Common sugars range from honey, corn syrup and table sugar to items such as fruit and milk.

Foods with a high starch content also tend to cause a hypoglycemic effect. Some examples of these foods are potatoes, white rice, corn and popcorn. Beverages containing alcohol or caffeine usually have this effect as well.

There also are herbs with a hypoglycemic effect. Examples are aloe vera, ginger root, American ginseng, turmeric and cinnamon bark. Many doctors, on occasion, will purposefully use herbs in small doses to treat diabetes. This is because herbs normally do not create side effects.

Practitioners also will intentionally give medications with a hypoglycemic effect. These are called oral hypoglycemic agents. The five classes of these agents are sulfonylureas, meglitinides, biguanides, thiazolidineodiones and alpha-glucosidase inhibitors. They are used for patients who have diabetes but are not insulin-dependent.

Diabetes is the cause of many types of health problems. It therefore is extremely important for individuals who have the disease to maintain a proper blood sugar level. It can be very helpful for a diabetic to consult with a registered dietitian or nutritionist and create a specific diet plan to follow. As a result, a hypoglycemic effect probably will be avoided.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.