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15/15 rule

To treat low blood sugar the 15/15 rule is usually applied. Eat 15 grams of carbohydrate and wait 15 minutes. The following foods will provide about 15 grams of carbohydrate:

  • 3 glucose tablets
  • Half cup (4 ounces) of fruit juice or regular soda
  • 6 or 7 hard candies
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar

After the carbohydrate is eaten, the person should wait about 15 minutes for the sugar to get into their blood. If the person does not feel better within 15 minutes more carbohydrate can be consumed. Their blood sugar should be checked to make sure it has come within a safe range.


Review Date: 6/28/2011
Reviewed By: Ari S. Eckman, MD, Chief, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Trinitas Regional Medical Center, Elizabeth, NJ. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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