Hyperglycemia: Let's have a campfire!

The body burns sugars like a fire consumes fuel, but careful of what you throw on that fire


Hyperglycemia is a condition of high blood glucose level. The way that I like to explain this condition is by comparing it to something that we use in everyday life: a campfire.

When we have a campfire, we are burning firewood. When the firewood burns, it creates fire, which is energy; the fire, by consuming the log, creates smoke. Everybody enjoys standing around the campfire and enjoys smelling the smoke.

Well, the body burns glucose with oxygen to create energy. By burning this glucose and creating energy, it is also creating exhaust. Our body eliminates this exhaust through the respiratory system as carbon dioxide.

If we run out of firewood to keep our campfire burning, we could go get a spare tire to burn. However, burning the rubber creates a terrible smell, and it bellows black soot into the air that falls on top of us. Now nobody can stand around the campfire because of the horrendous smell and the black soot that is ruining their clothes.

When the body doesn’t have a sugar to create energy, it now has to burn the fatty stores: the little fat rolls that sits above your belt, for example. Burning this spare tire creates a toxin in the body called a ketone. When ketones build up in the body, it can result in ketoacidosis, which makes the person’s breath smell like nail polish remover.

Watch this brief video explaining how the body’s energy — creating Krebs cycle is like a campfire.

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