“Raymond was arrested for assaulting his girlfriend,” says Dr. Russel Baylock in this YouTube video, “He actually tried to kill her. They were just arguing over something that was non-consequential. Just silly. But he flew into a rage – pulled his 357 magnum. [He] grabbed her [and] put it up to her head… She knocked it out of the way… and it shot through her hand.”
Baylock continues to explain that this 23-year old man was arrested and charged. Confused as to why he became so angered, his doctor went back and looked at his history. His mother said when Raymond was young he had “weak spells” where he couldn’t continue playing. So she’d give him some sugar. He’d go back to playing. Then his blood sugar would fall again. By age 13 he suffered radical mood swings, poor grades and violent outbursts associated with these regular drops in blood sugar.
Seeing that he was eating a high-sugar diet of candy, donuts, pastries and coffee, Raymond’s doctor tried reducing the carbohydrates. Baylock reports his behavior normalized, he didn’t break his parole and never committed another crime.
Baylock’s YouTube video goes into more stories and statistics correlating violence with blood sugar fluctuations. Examples range from soda-drinking inmates to a warmongering tribe in Peru that subsisted mainly on potatoes.
Baylock’s examples emphasize the importance of balancing blood sugar. While my type-1 wife, Nicole, has never pulled a gun on me, during one hypoglycemic episode she did quite a number on a potted plant. The plant survived, but the pot did not. Since switching to a low-carb diet two years ago, she’s only had two hypoglycemic episodes where she became enraged (but not violent). Back in the high-carb days, we could have two a month (maybe four).
–John C. A. Manley
P.S. In Baylock’s talk he says one factor that led to more violent behaviour was blood sugars rising too high after going low. Nicole used to always follow lows with highs. Fortunately, the approach Dr. Bernstein recommends in his book (Diabetes Solution) put an end to the “rebound effect.” I’ll share the approach we use in the next post.
P.P.S. You may also like to read: 3 Natural Ways to Stop Type-1 Hypoglycaemic Episodes