What Should My Blood Sugar Levels Be
Your blood sugar level changes depending on what youâve eaten, whether youâve exercised and other factors but we have some general guidelines to determine what levels are healthy.
For generally healthy individuals who havenât eaten for eight hours or more, a normal blood sugar level is between 70-99 mg/dL. When youâve eaten in the past two hours, it should be no higher than 140 mg/dL. To refresh your chemistry knowledge, that unit is milligrams per deciliter and itâs measuring the amount of glucose present in your blood.
Only a medical professional can diagnose diabetes or another issue with your blood sugar, so if youâre concerned about your blood sugar levels, check with a doctor.
Ways To Lower Blood Sugar Quickly And Safely
First, if youve missed an insulin dose or your pump is not working, the first thing to do is correct the underlying problem, according to Dr. Wright. Insulin is a normal hormone in our body thats normally produced by the pancreas and what insulin does is it acts as a shuttle and it shuttles glucose from the blood and into the cells so that it can be used as fuel, explains Dr. Hong. So, for somebody with diabetes, if they have high blood glucoses, by giving themself more insulin theyre essentially helping to facilitate the movement of glucose into the cells so that the blood glucose levels drop and the cells receive more fuel or glucose.
Take missed diabetes medication
I dont generally recommend that you take it on an as-needed basis, says Dr. Hong. Typically, diabetes medications are meant to be taken on a daily basis or in a scheduled way. If you forget to take your medication, then absolutely, your blood sugars can go up, and then if you take it again, the sugars will certainly come back down, says Dr. Hong. Just keep in mind that medications wont work as quickly as insulin, especially if its been a while since you had your last dose or if you havent been taking it as often as you should.
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Take Any Missed Doses Of Medications
Take your missed medication immediately although be careful not to take it too close to when you are scheduled for another dose.
Please talk to your doctor or healthcare provider if you are uncertain about when to take the missed dose as too much of certain medicines can cause adverse reactions.
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Why Does Blood Sugar Go Up In The Morning What Is The Dawn Phenomenon
There are a few main reasons why your glucose levels may be higher in the morning. One of these is known as the dawn phenomenon.
The dawn phenomenon occurs early in the morning between 3 am and 8 am while you are still asleep. As morning approaches, the body naturally signals your liver to produce glucose, giving your body the energy it needs for the start of the day. Caused by changes in hormonal levels, the dawn phenomenon happens to all people, with or without diabetes. However, for those without diabetes, insulin levels increase and they do not experience hyperglycemia.
Another reason you may experience higher morning glucose levels is because your injected insulin wears off. If your body has insufficient insulin during the night, your glucose levels may start to rise. To combat this, you may consider trying a new basal insulin, adjusting the timing and amount of your basal dose , or changing your nighttime basal rates .
The last reason you may experience higher morning glucose levels is known as the Somogyi effect. This occurs if your glucose levels fall too low during the night, caused by too much insulin or medication. To respond, your liver produces more glucose to try to maintain your glucose levels, which may result in hyperglycemia. The Somogyi effect is not as common as the other reasons described.
When To See A Doctor
According to the University of Michigan, blood sugar levels of 300 mg/dL or more can be dangerous. They recommend calling a doctor if you have two readings in a row of 300 or more.
See your doctor if you have consistently high blood sugar levels. Symptoms of this include:
- increased thirst
- high levels of sugar in urine
Ask your doctor how often to check your blood sugar and about your ideal blood sugar levels.
If you dont currently see a doctor who specializes in diabetes, known as an endocrinologist, you can find one by searching the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists website.
You can find a certified diabetes educator by visiting the American Diabetes Associations website and searching by zip code.
Talk to your doctor if you have consistently high blood sugar readings or symptoms of chronic hyperglycemia.
Checking your blood sugar and then treating hyperglycemia early will help prevent any complications.
Health problems can arise when someone has high blood sugar regularly and without treatment.
Examples of complications include:
- nerve damage, called diabetic neuropathy, that may affect sensations in the feet and hands
- diabetic retinopathy, or damage to the blood vessels in the eyes that affects vision
- increased risks for kidney problems
- increased risks for heart problems
Taking steps to keep your blood sugar at target levels can help to minimize the likelihood that these complications will occur.
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What Is High Blood Sugar
Your blood sugar level can be determined by taking a blood sample, either in a fasted state, or two hours after eating.
- If your blood sugar is less than 100 mg/dL after an eight-hour fast or less than 140 mg/dL two hours after eating, youre in the normal range.
- If you conduct a test in the morning, after sleeping for eight hours, and your blood sugar is at 126 mg/dL or higher, youve got high blood sugar.
An estimated 29 million people in the U.S. have type 2 diabetes, which is the result of blood sugar levels being consistently high. Another 86 million have prediabetes, which can lead to type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Prediabetes, however, can be reversed by finding ways to naturally lower blood sugar.
Can Medications Help If You Have Prediabetes
Even though some people reverse prediabetes with lifestyle changes, this isnt enough for everyone.
If your blood sugar doesnt improve and youre at high risk for developing diabetes, your doctor might prescribe medication.
Medications to help lower blood sugar and reverse prediabetes include metformin or a similar drug.
Metformin has been shown to reduce the risk of diabetes by up to
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What Is Low Blood Glucose
Low blood glucose, also called low blood sugar or hypoglycemia, occurs when the level of glucose in your blood drops below what is healthy for you. For many people with diabetes, this means a blood glucose reading lower than 70 milligrams per deciliter .1 Your number might be different, so check with your doctor or health care team to find out what blood glucose level is low for you.
Treating And Managing Hyperglycaemia
If your blood sugar level is slightly high for a short time, emergency treatment wont be necessary. But if it continues to rise you may need to act fast to avoid developing diabetic ketoacidosis .
If your blood sugar level is 15 mmol/l or more, you should check your blood or urine for ketones. If ketones are present, it is likely that you do not have enough insulin in your body. This means you may need to increase your dose or give yourself an extra dose. Talk to your diabetes team about how to do this if you are unsure.
You should also try to drink plenty of sugar-free fluids to prevent dehydration. And if you are feeling unwell, especially if you are vomiting, you should follow any sick day rules you have been given and contact your diabetes healthcare team for advice.
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Manage Your Stress Levels
Stress can cause your blood sugar levels to rise.
When you are stressed, your body releases the hormone cortisol which can lead to increased blood sugar levels.
To manage your stress and improve your mental health, you can try techniques such as yoga, meditation, or deep breathing exercises.
You can also try to find healthy ways to cope with stressful situations such as talking to a friend or going for a walk.
Dont Get Tricked While Treating
A big part of managing diabetes is maintaining stable blood sugar levels. While consuming sugary treats once in a while can be perfectly fine, over consumption can destabilise your blood sugar levels.
Finding a good balance to control overconsumption is the key. Its always best to feed your children some complex carbohydrates like fruits or whole grain snacks before going trick-or-treating, said Dr El-Refee.
This way, there will be less of an urge to consume the treats in one go, or when walking from door-to-door. Accompany toddlers while they are trick-or-treating to help avoid overconsumption. If you have a teenager or a slightly older child, have a direct conversation with them on why they need to monitor their own consumption levels.
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Symptoms Of High Blood Sugar In The Morning
If you wear a continuous glucose monitor , or if you routinely check your blood glucose every morning, you can see whether or not you are experiencing early morning hyperglycemia. In addition, you may also experience some of the signs and symptoms of hyperglycemia, which may include:
- Frequent and excessive urination
Bump Up Your Exercise Intensity
Exercise is a great way to boost your body’s ability to manage blood sugar, but making sure it’s a heart-pumping workout will help even more. Performing brief spurts of high-intensity exercise improved blood glucose levels in diabetics and healthy people for one to three days, per a 2013 review of research. Muscles soak up glucose during exercise to burn for energy, and the higher-intensity movements may aid this process even more.
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When Should I Check My Childs Blood Sugar
The diabetes care team will tell you when to check your childs blood sugar. Most kids and teens need to test:
- before each meal
- before, during, and after exercise
Sometimes you may need to test more often, even while your child sleeps. For example, if:
- Your child was recently diagnosed with diabetes.
- Your child is sick.
- Your child is having a lot of high or low blood sugars.
- There are changes in your childs diabetes treatment or daily habits.
Beware Of Low Blood Sugars
Remember, above all else, its very easy to over-treat a high blood sugar with insulin and wind up low. Then youll be tempted to binge-eat and wind up high again. This blood sugar roller coaster is exhausting and dangerous, too.
Frequently finding yourself on the blood sugar roller coaster means your approach to taking insulin and/or how you treat low blood sugars isnt working and needs some fine-tuning. Work with your healthcare team to reduce and prevent these wild swings to ensure your overall safety and quality of life!
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Hangry No More: Heres How To Keep Your Blood Sugar Balanced Throughout The Day
You can avoid premeal grouchiness and post-meal crashes by keeping your blood sugar levels steady.
Mercey Livingston is a health and wellness writer and certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach. Shes written about fitness and wellness for Well+Good, Womens Health, Business Insider, and Prevention.com among others. When not writing, she enjoys reading and trying out workout classes all over New York City.
People often think of blood sugar solely in the context of diabetes or pregnancy, but its important for everyone to pay attention to it. Avoiding high blood sugar and low blood sugar can help you feel your best and keep up steady energy throughout the day.
Balancing your blood sugar helps to keep your energy even, keeps you more focused, balances out your hormones, prevents excessive hunger, helps with weight loss and overall maintains optimal health and wellbeing, says Amy Shapiro, a registered dietician and founder of Real Nutrition NYC.
Your blood sugar could be all over the place if you feel hungry all the time, even if youre eating frequently. Ideally, when you eat you feel steady energy for several hours and dont get hangry easily. When your blood sugar is balanced you find you think less about food and more about all the things that you can do, says Shapiro.
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What To Do Next If You Cant Reduce Blood Sugar Naturally
Contact your healthcare provider if you have tried but are unable to successfully reduce your blood sugar by practicing healthy lifestyle behaviors. Your doctor can talk to you in greater detail about your diet and exercise routine, and identify where you might be able to make further improvements.
Patients can expect to have their blood pressure checked and monitored over a period of weeks to establish the diagnosis. It will be treated with lifestyle changes and the patient will be monitored regularly. They may also have lab testing. If the blood sugar remains uncontrolled, medication will be the next step, says Dr. Raja.
There may be some instances where blood sugar cannot be reduced naturally, and medications are needed to control and reduce blood sugar. If your doctor recommends taking medication for your condition, dont hesitate to ask any questions you may have and make sure to inquire about all your available treatment options for reducing your blood sugar levels.
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How Common Is Low Blood Glucose
Low blood glucose is common among people with type 1 diabetes and among people with type 2 diabetes who take insulin or some other diabetes medicines. In a large global study of people with diabetes who take insulin, 4 in 5 people with type 1 diabetes and nearly half of those with type 2 diabetes reported a low blood sugar event at least once over a 4-week period.2
Severely low blood glucose, defined as when your blood glucose level drops so low you cant treat it yourself, is less common. Among U.S. adults with diabetes who take insulin or some diabetes medicines that help the pancreas release insulin into the blood, 2 in 100 may develop severely low blood glucose each year.3
Ways To Reduce Blood Sugar Almost Instantly
High blood sugaralso known as hyperglycemiais linked to diabetes and prediabetes, and can lead to serious issues if left untreated. The way I explain prediabetes to my patients is that your body is struggling to keep your blood glucose levels in a healthy range,says nutritionist Lauren Antonucci, RD. You shouldnt panic, but you should start making real changes in your diet and lifestyle to prevent your blood sugar from rising and turning into type 2. Here are five ways to lower your blood sugar, fast. Read onand to ensure your health and the health of others, dont miss these Sure Signs Youve Already Had COVID.
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Check Your Blood Glucose Levels
For many people with diabetes, checking their blood glucose level each day is an important way to manage their diabetes. Monitoring your blood glucose level is most important if you take insulin. The results of blood glucose monitoring can help you make decisions about food, physical activity, and medicines.
The most common way to check your blood glucose level at home is with a blood glucose meter. You get a drop of blood by pricking the side of your fingertip with a lancet. Then you apply the blood to a test strip. The meter will show you how much glucose is in your blood at the moment.
Ask your health care team how often you should check your blood glucose levels. Make sure to keep a record of your blood glucose self-checks. You can print copies of this glucose self-check chart . Take these records with you when you visit your health care team.
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Increasing The Amount Of Fiber That You Eat
It is a well-known fact that when you eat more and more fiber, you are in a better position to feel full and satisfied for longer intervals. This prohibits you from overeating. Besides, fiber also slows down the process of carbohydrates digestion and absorption of sugar by the body. This, in turn, maintains the required level of blood glucose or blood sugar.
It is important here to know that there are two types of fiber: namely soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. For lowering of the blood sugar levels in diabetes, it is the soluble fiber which plays a greater role.
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What Is The A1c Test
The A1C test is a simple blood test that measures your average blood sugar levels over the past 2 or 3 months. The test is done at a lab or your doctors office in addition tonot instead ofregular blood sugar testing you do yourself.
A1C testing is part of the ABCs of diabetesimportant steps you can take to prevent or delay health complications down the road:
- A: Get a regular A1C test.
- B: Try to keep your blood pressure below 140/90 mm Hg .
- C: Manage your cholesterol levels.
- s: Stop smoking or dont start.
The A1C goal for most adults with diabetes is between 7% and 8%, but your goal may be different depending on your age, other health conditions, medicines youre taking, and other factors. Work with your doctor to establish a personal A1C goal for you.