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RE: [IP] Glucagon

>...because the liver would be processing the alcohol and couldn'tpump out 
glucagon to save you if you had a bad hypo in the night. If wetype-1s no 
longer produce glucagon, what is that we pump out of our bodywhen fasting 
that requires that basal amount of insulin? Maybe I am gettingmy "sugar" 
terms mixed up! :)..<

Perhaps, this explanation will help answer your question:
The liver does not pump out glucagon, the pancreas will do that, if there is 
enough glucagon there to help maintain a normal BG. The regulatory response 
you are looking for comes from the adrenal glands. First, epinephrine is 
released for the immediate need to raise the blood glucose level.  Normally, 
glucagon is also released at the same time when your BG falls below a set 
level your body wants to maintain. Your brain has control (a "glucostat") 
that sets your individual, normal BG range.  (This range will vary depending 
on your level of glucose control. If you run high BGs all the time, then 
symptoms of low BG could occur when you drop to a normal BG range. If you are 
mainly running BGs in the 80 or below range all the time, you may not have 
symptoms until below 40 -50 mg/dl.)

Epinephrine is responsible for the early symptoms of hypoglycemia and for the 
breakdown of glycogen stored in the liver. With a longer duration of 
diabetes, and erratic BG control, the epinephrine response can diminish 
(hypoglycemia unawareness). Cortisone can take over the task of creating 
glucose from stored proteins and fats, and preventing cellular use of 
insulin.  Growth hormone release also plays a role here by inhibiting 
cellular use of insulin.  These processes take longer to raise the BG than 
glucagon and epinephrine. (YMMV)

(Sources: ADA; and Hanas, R., Insulin Dependent Diabetes in Children, 
Adolescents, and Adults)

Hope this answers your questions. See resources, for more detail.

Barbara Bradley, MS, RN, CDE
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