The Impact Of Hormones
Hormones can have an impact on your fasting glucose levels. Hormones like cortisol and growth hormone are released in the morning to get your body ready for the day ahead. These also increase glucose levels.
Usually your body counteracts these by releasing some insulin to help keep your glucose levels within a tight bandwidth. In type 2 diabetes, insulin is being released but its not working very well. This leaves your glucose levels susceptible to rising above normal levels.
This can be difficult to control but it still represents an inability of your body to control its own glucose levels. Without diabetes, your fasting glucose levels would not go high at any time throughout the day. Therefore, this too represents a progression of the disease.
Tests For Gestational Diabetes
Gestational diabetes is diagnosed using blood tests. Youll probably be tested between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy. If your risk is higher for getting gestational diabetes , your doctor may test you earlier. Blood sugar thats higher than normal early in your pregnancy may indicate you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes rather than gestational diabetes.
Try Doing More Exercise
Working out uses blood glucose for fuel, moving it from your blood to your muscles. A 2021 review found that exercise helped people living with and without diabetes control their fasting blood glucose.
If you find that you tend to wake up with high blood sugar, try going for a run, following a YouTube workout, or booking yourself into gym classes. This could help you bring down your morning blood sugar spikes.
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Medications For Insulin Dependent Diabetes
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Postprandial Or Reactive Hyperglycemia
This type of hyperglycemia occurs after eating .
During this type of hyperglycemia, your liver doesn’t stop sugar production, as it normally would directly after a meal, and stores glucose as glycogen.
If your blood glucose level 1-2 hours after eating is above 180mg/dL, that signals postprandial or reactive hyperglycemia.
However, it’s not just people with diabetes who can develop hyperglycemia. Certain medications and illnesses can cause it, including beta blockers, steroids, and bulimia. This article will focus on hyperglycemia caused by diabetes.
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High Calorie Foods May Or May Not Cause The Blood Sugar Level To Rise
Many people think that all high-calorie foods raise blood sugar level, but this is not always the case.
In general, foods that cause blood sugar level to rise the most are those that are high in carbohydrates, which are quickly converted into energy, such as rice, bread, fruits and sugar. Next are foods high in protein, such as meats, fish eggs, milk and dairy products, and oily foods. However, even though carbohydrates affect blood sugar levels, if you don’t eat them your diet will be unbalanced and you won’t feel satisfied after your meal, which can lead to excessive consumption of foods rich in protein and fat.
Food containing three major nutrients
What Do Your Fasting Blood Glucose And Hemoglobin A1c Levels Mean
Blood glucose serves as the primary energy source for our brain and body. Healthy blood glucose levels are therefore essential for maintaining overall health and longevity. Unfortunately, several factors including the Standard American Diet and a sedentary lifestyle can increase glucose beyond normal levels, and over time, result in prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. If undetected, consistently high glucose can lead to long-term health complications, including nerve damage, cardiovascular disease, and kidney failure. This article explains the two most common blood tests used to detect abnormal glucose levels and ways to properly regulate them.
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Dawn Phenomenon And Somogyi Effect
In diabetics, there are 2 common ways that high fasting morning blood sugar arises. The first reason is the Dawn Phenomenon and this impacts individuals who are following a ketogenic lifestyle as well. Overnight as we sleep between the hours of 2-8am a slurry of hormones including cortisol, growth hormone, adrenaline and glucagon all begin to rise.
These hormones cause a gluconeogenesis effect where the liver and muscles break down their stored sugar to increase circulating blood sugar. This helps us have energy and mental arousal in the morning. This is a normal physiological response and it is normal for keto dieters to have slightly higher fasting blood sugaralthough it shouldnt be too high and you can mitigate this with the strategies discussed further on in this article.
Diabetics who are also taking exogenous insulin can also have something called the somogyi effect where they shoot too much insulin before bed and they have a blood sugar crash, followed by a huge increase in stress hormones that dramatically increases blood sugar through gluconeogenesis. This is obviously not an issue unless you are a type I or type II diabetic taking prescription insulin.
When To Speak To Your Doctor
If you try eating earlier, sticking to healthier meals, and exercising without seeing a drop in your fasting blood glucose, it might be time to speak to your doctor about further testing.
Tests like the HbA1c can help your doctor confirm whether youd benefit from medical treatment. This test shows your average blood glucose levels over the last 3 months.
Your doctor may recommend controlling your fasting blood sugar level through diet or exercise if its high enough to suggest prediabetes.
If type 2 diabetes is developing, they may prescribe medication or insulin injections if it becomes moderate to severe, but its possible for many people to manage type 2 diabetes with exercise and diet alone.
If you already have a diabetes diagnosis and take insulin, speak to your healthcare provider about whether they can change your dose or type of insulin or recommend a shift in your medication schedule.
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Option To Discuss With Your Physician
Some doctors that are integrated care practitioners or functional medicine specialists may recommend Type 2 diabetics add 1/8 to Â¼ cup of nopal at a meal. This is a recommendation that has been made at some First Nation hospitals for Native American Indians who are diabetic and have exceptionally high blood sugar levels. Cactus leaves are indigenous food for this population.
If you decide to do this, monitor your blood sugar levels more closely, as cactus is quite effective at lowering blood sugar level.
One study on the effect of nopal on blood sugar levels tested its effect on those with type 2 diabetes. The addition of the nopal to the meal lowered the need for insulin and also reduced the after-meal peaks of blood sugar at 30 and 45 minutes.
Korean scientists determined how cactus works in the body. Cactus inhibits glucose absorption from the intestine and enhances glucose uptake from insulin-sensitive muscle cells through the AMPK/p38 MAPK signaling pathway in the body.
If you add cactus to your meal, donât be overzealous about it.
Lopez-Romero, P., et al. The effect of nopal on postprandial blood glucose, incretins, and antioxidant activity in Mexican patients with type 2 diabetes after consumption of two different composition breakfasts. J Acad Nutr Diet 2014 Nov 114:1811-8.
Try Pip Lancets for yourself. Were pretty sure youll never go back to traditional lancets!
How To Control Blood Sugar With Intermittent Fasting
If youd like to try intermittent fasting for blood sugar control, there are a few things for you to consider, especially if you have diabetes.
Choose an intermittent fasting plan that wont cause you stress. During your fast, your insulin levels decrease. In response, your body releases hormones from your liver, one of which is the stress hormone, cortisol. Cortisol tells the liver to release more glucose. So if youre in a state of stress, or if you have diabetes, your liver is more likely to over-react and release more glucose than you need. As a result, your blood sugar levels will increase.
If youre your blood sugar goes up, and you havent eaten, its likely your liver release glucose into your bloodstream. Exercise is a vital way to utilize sugar in your blood and help your body return to a fat-burning state.
Its uncommon, but fasting can cause you to experience hypoglycemia or low blood sugar. If you have diabetes, this can potentially be dangerous since diabetes medications already put you at risk for low blood sugar. Talk to your doctor about your intent to start a fast, especially if youre on diabetes medications. Its possible for you to fast safely when your doctor manages your diabetes medications appropriately.
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Fasting Blood Sugar Chart
I want a 110 fasting blood sugar or I wish the numbers are in the normal range are some things we might hear most people with or without diabetes say. Who would not want their levels to be in the normal range? The number of issues that can come along with improper blood sugar levels can cause significant distress and problems in later life. Ensure that your fasting sugar tests have been done by an authentic and genuine laboratory. In case you are new to understanding what the numbers might mean, you can visit your healthcare team with your reports for proper guidance.
The Centre for Disease and Control and ADA have come up with this classification of fasting sugar levels
Even if your at-home glucometer shows 115 fasting blood sugar, it would be vital to visit a lab to get these tests done. This is because the finger pricks and glucometer tests at home may not be entirely accurate and several factors could affect the results. A diagnostic test should only be conducted in a lab setting.
Upswing: Steroids And Water Pills
People take corticosteroids, such as prednisone, to treat rashes, arthritis, asthma, and many other conditions. But they can boost your blood sugar, and may even trigger diabetes in some people. Diuretics that help high blood pressure, also called water pills, can do the same. Some antidepressants also raise or lower blood sugar.
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Intermittent Fasting Reduces Blood Sugar
The benefits of intermittent fasting extend far beyond weight loss. Studies show it can reduce your risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease because it improves the regulation of your blood sugar, increases your resistance to stress, and suppresses inflammation.
A case study published in the US National Library of Medicine showed patients with type 2 diabetes who participated in an intermittent fasting protocol lost weight and managed to stop insulin therapy. In studies where weight loss didnt occur, fasting still improved the glucose levels of participants.
This latter finding is significant because it confirms that a reduction in bloodstream glucose is not a secondary benefit of weight loss, but a direct result of intermittent fasting. This reduction in blood sugar could be due to the changes in signaling pathways and metabolic rhythm that fasting invokes, as well as an increase in ketones.
Improvements in blood sugar tend to be dependent on fasting. Your blood sugar will typically improve after 2-4 weeks of compliance with a fasting protocol, and it dissipates if you return to eating three meals or more per day.
You may be able to maintain your weight loss after you stop fasting, but long-term fasting is recommended if you need to continue to regulate your blood sugar.
What Causes High Blood Sugar Levels In The Morning
Commonly known reasons why your blood sugar may be high in the morning include high-carb bedtime snacks and not enough diabetes medications.
Yet two lesser-known reasons may be causing your morning blood sugar woes: the dawn phenomenon and the Somogyi effect. These causes of high morning blood sugar levels are a result of body changes and reactions that happen while you are sleeping.
Build A Clear Picture Of How Your Blood Sugar Works By Using A Cgm
As weve seen, everyones blood sugar control works differently, so it can be helpful to know whether morning spikes are a problem for you.
Unless you have diabetes, it is unlikely that you check your glucose regularly.
Checking your glucose a few times throughout the day or continuously via CGM can help to show how your body is handling changes in glucose levels during fasting or after meals.
What Do The Test Results Mean
- If your fasting blood glucose level is between 3.6mmol/l and 6mmol/l, this means that your blood glucose level is normal.
- If your fasting blood glucose level is 7mmol/l or higher, this is likely to mean that you have diabetes. Diabetes is a long-term condition where the body is not able to control the amount of glucose in the blood.
- If your fasting blood glucose level is between 6.1mmol/l and 6.9mmols/l, you may have IFG.
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What Units Are Used For Measuring Blood Sugar Levels
Doctors measure blood sugar differently depending on where you live:
In the U.S., your blood sugar level mostly shows as milligrams of glucose in 1/10th of a liter of blood, also known as milligrams per deciliter .
In the U.K., doctors often measure your blood sugar levels in millimoles of glucose per liter of blood .
Whichever measurement a test uses, its to compare your level to a normal blood sugar range.
If you live with diabetes, youll have higher blood sugar levels than someone who doesnt have diabetes. So, a normal blood glucose level for a person with prediabetes or diabetes is higher.
There are other ways to measure blood sugar, such as a hemoglobin A1C test that estimates the average blood sugar levels over the last 3 months.
How To Lower Morning Blood Sugar
Trying to learn how to lower morning blood sugar? Heres why your glucose levels rise in the morning and a few things you can try to keep them in range.
Waking up with high glucose levels may feel like it doesn’t make sense. You spend several hours asleep, not consuming any carbs, and yet somehow your glucose levels are still high when you wake up in the morning.
Why does this happen? What can you do to make sure your glucose levels are safely in range in the morning? Learn more about some tips on avoiding high morning blood sugar levels so you can start your day off right.
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Managing Blood Sugar When Youre Ill
When you get sick, your blood sugar levels may fluctuate and become unpredictable.
If youâre sick, itâs very important that you:
- drink plenty of water or sugar-free fluids
- check your blood sugar levels more often than usual
- take 15 grams of carbohydrate every hour if you are not able to follow your usual meal plan
- replace food with fluids that contain sugar if you canât eat solid food
- continue to take your insulin or other diabetes medication
If you have a cold or flu and want to use a cold remedy or cough syrup, ask your pharmacist to help you make a good choice. Many cold remedies and cough syrups contain sugar, so try to pick sugar-free products.
As an extra precaution, you should always check with your health-care team about guidelines for insulin adjustment or medication changes during an illness.
Know Your Blood Sugar
Blood sugar is the amount of sugar in your blood at a given time. Itâs important to check your blood sugar level, because it will:
- determine if you have a high or low blood sugar level at a given time
- show you how your lifestyle and medication affect your blood sugar levels
- help you and your diabetes health-care team make lifestyle and medication changes to improve your blood sugar levels
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Is Your Fasting Blood Sugar High Every Morning
I recently had an issue where no matter what I did, my fasting blood sugar levels were always high every morning. They were in the range of between 12 mmol/L to 16 mmol/L. At first I chalked it up to overdoing it around the holiday season. Eating way more carbs than usual, especially late at night and very close to bedtime. I figured that I was off with my bolus for the meals I ate at night. However, after I cut out the extra carbs and still got high readings in the morning, I knew something was off.
I realized that every morning religiously, I would wake up between 3 am and 4 am with a high blood sugar. Unfortunately if my blood sugar is above 8 mmol/L I cannot sleep. This problem prevented me from getting good quality sleep. I would often have to correct and monitor before I could go back to bed. I started to analyze my diet and my habits to see where I was going wrong. If you are experiencing a similar issue you can start with the below recommendations.