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What Causes Blood Sugar To Be High In The Morning

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What Happens In Dawn Phenomenon

Reasons for High Blood Sugars in the Morning

The body usually doesnt require much insulin during sleep, and it makes less of this hormone. The body begins to release stored glucose, or sugar, toward the early morning as a source of energy for the following day.

At the same time, the body is producing another hormone, glucagon, which can lead to an additional rise in blood sugar levels.

It also generates cortisol, a stress hormone that works in the same way as insulin. This occurs as nighttime levels of insulin are beginning to decrease.

The increased insulin and decrease in glucagon and cortisol levels cause blood sugar to rise in the morning.

Blood glucose levels are typically 70 to 120 mg/dL, which is slightly more than the normal range of 60 to 110 mg/dL. In response to this change, some people without diabetes increase their insulin production. However, because diabetes prevents the body from doing so, others do not produce additional insulin.

According to the American Diabetes Association, the dawn phenomenon occurs between 5:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m.

people suffering from pre-diabetes may also suffer from this condition in the morning.

How To Prevent High Morning Blood Sugar

Do not fret, friends. There are ways to deal. Here are three simple ways:

1) Take insulin right when you wake up

If its 2 pm and you notice your blood sugar is shooting up for no apparent reason, youd take a correction dose of insulin to prevent that spike, right? .

The same concept applies here.

To determine how much insulin to take, wake up, record blood sugar values at 30 and 60-minute intervals, and record this for a few days . Then, you can use your insulin to carb ratio to determine a correction bolus.

2) Increase your basal rate around your wake up time

If you fight Dawn Phenomenon, whats a common strategy for success? Increasing basal rates in the wee hours of the morning to counteract that hormone-induced spike.

Well, if youre used to a particular morning routine and know itll take you a little while to prepare food and eat, consider increasing that basal rate during that time period. That additional insulin may overcome the liver dumping glucose and blunt your blood sugar spike, or ideally, prevent it in the first place.

3) If you skip breakfast, stop skipping it and EAT SOMETHING

As a registered dietitian, I can regurgitate all the information from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics about why breakfast is important. This isnt about that, but in all honesty here, try eating SOMETHING. Id love if it were healthy, but if youre just DYING to have Cinnamon Toast Crunch, by all means, have at it. If youre about the low-carb life, go for some eggs.

Whats The Difference Between Them

The Somogyi effect can occur at any time there is more insulin in the body. Check blood sugar levels at bedtime, around 2 a.m. to 3 a.m., and at your usual wake-up time for several nights to determine if an early morning high blood sugar level is due to the dawn phenomenon or the Somogyi phenomenon.

  • If your blood sugar level drops below normal from 2 a.m. to 3 a.m., suspect the Somogyi effect.
  • If the blood sugar level is okay or elevated from 2 a.m. to 3 a.m., its more than likely the dawn phenomenon.

The somoyogi effect is named after Michael Somogyi, Ph.D., a chemist who was the first to describe it in the 1930s.

According to a 2011 study, the dawn phenomenon is more common than the Somogyi effect. The dawn phenomenon occurs naturally, whereas the Somogyi effect typically occurs as a result of poor diabetes management.

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Treating High Morning Blood Sugar

A blood sugar high in the morning “can be tough to treat, acknowledges Amori, but with the help of your medical team, you can try different approaches. Talk with your doctor about these strategies:

Adjust your pump. If youre testing high regularly and you use an insulin pump, you might be able to program it to help manage your morning highs.

Check blood sugar before bed. Granted, many people have morning high blood sugar after an acceptable blood sugar before bedtime. Even so, “don’t go to bed with high blood sugar,” cautions Amori.

Take basal insulin. Taking basal insulin at bedtime could help, but be sure to clear any changes in dosing with your physician before you try it.

Adjust medication. If in fact your high morning blood sugar is a rebound response to a low blood sugar level while youre asleep, you might need to change the dose of any medication you take in the evening that could be causing low blood sugar. Talk with your doctor about whether your medication schedule should be adjusted to treat morning highs.

Have a healthy pre-bed snack. For those experiencing the Somogyi effect, a healthy mixed snack of protein and carbohydrates could help prevent your blood sugar roller coaster at night. Amori advises working with a registered dietitian if youre not sure how to fit a pre-bed snack into your daily diet.

If My A1c Is Normal My Glucose Is Good

Diabetes Type 2 Facts: high blood sugar in the morning causes

An A1C result thatâs below 5.7% is normal âs standards, but having a result below that number isnât the end of the story. Pregnancy, hemoglobin variants, anemia, liver disease, and certain medications can cause inaccurate A1C results.

Additionally, the A1C test is measuring your average glucose value over the past 3 months, but averages inherently do not capture highs and lows. So, you could have a normal average while also having abnormal glucose spikes. The A1C test should only supplement your regular blood sugar testing, not replace it completely.

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High Blood Sugar Facts

  • Low high blood sugar is abnormally high blood levels of insulin in the blood. Hyperglycemia is a hallmark sign of diabetes and prediabetes, and diabetes is the most common cause of it. Severely elevated glucose levels can result in a medical emergency like diabetic ketoacidosis or hyperglycemic hyperosmolar nonketotic syndrome .
  • The primary symptom of hyperglycemia is excessive amounts of sugar in the urine. Other symptoms and signs of high blood sugar levels in the blood are blurred vision, hunger , and headaches.
  • Other conditions that can cause high blood sugar are pancreatitis, Cushing’s syndrome, unusual hormone-secreting tumors, pancreatic cancer, certain medications, and severe illnesses.
  • Insulin is the treatment for people with type 1 diabetes, and life-threatening increases in glucose levels. People with type 2 diabetes may be managed with a combination of different oral and injectable medications. Hyperglycemia due to medical conditions other than diabetes is generally treated by treating the underlying condition responsible for the elevated glucose.

What Is The Dawn Phenomenon

Your body uses glucose for energy and it is important to have enough extra energy to be able to wake up in the morning. So for a period of time in the early morning hours, usually between 3 a.m. and 8 a.m., your body starts churning out stored glucose to prepare for the upcoming day.

At the same time, your body releases hormones that reduce your sensitivity to insulin. In addition, these events may be happening while your diabetes medication doses taken the day before are wearing off.

These events cause your body’s blood sugar levels to rise in the morning .

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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.

Not Taking Enough Meal Time Insulin

High Blood Sugars in the Morning, Why?| Malayalam health tips

This is the first thing to look into. Make sure that you correctly determine the number of carbohydrates in your last meal of the day and take the insulin to suit. Be sure to also look out for sources of hidden carbs as well. Our bodies react to food and insulin differently at different times of the day. Many individuals including myself have a different carb to insulin ratio at night. I normally have to take a bit more insulin at night especially if the meal is high in carbohydrates.

Try eating your last meal at least 2 hours before bed so that you can check the 2 hour post dinner blood sugar reading. This will indicate if you are indeed giving the correct amount of insulin. If you have a good reading before bed but its much higher in the morning, then there is definitely another issue.

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Symptoms Of High Blood Sugar Levels In Morning

In the morning, a persons blood sugar levels are generally somewhat higher. However, in certain persons with diabetes, these levels are considerably high.

Symptoms of diabetes can continue for long periods.

Carbohydrate-induced blood sugar imbalances may lead to a wide range of symptoms. These might get worse as time goes on, as a result of these blood sugar spikes.

Healthy blood sugar levels are defined as follows by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases:

  • Just before eating, from 80130 mg/dl 2 hours after eating, and below 180 mg/dl 2 hours following a meal.
  • Furthermore, they observe that a blood sugar level of less than 70 mg/dl is hypoglycemia. A high blood sugar level is defined as anything over 180 mg/dL.

The dawn phenomenon, the Somogyi effect, and Waning insulin are the three primary causes of elevated blood sugar in the morning.

This article explores these causes. It will also include what they can mean for a persons health and when to see a doctor.

Delayed Effects Of Fatty Foods

Blood sugar levels typically peak within an hour or so after eating. However, a high-fat dinner containing fried foods, pizza, or cheesy casseroles might delay this normal jump in blood sugar until the morning. Why? Large amounts of dietary fat can make it harder for insulin to do its job, explains Scheiner. Plus, fat slows down digestion and absorption, which could cause blood sugar to peak later than usual.

Possible solutions: Opt for fish, skinless poultry, beans, and vegetables sautéed in olive oil over foods high in saturated fat like fried foods and those covered in cheese. Filling up half your plate with vegetables can also help cut portion sizes of other foodsand your fat intake from those foods.

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What Is The Somogyi Effect

A second possible cause of high blood sugar levels in the morning is the Somogyi effect, sometimes also called rebound hyperglycemia. It was named after the doctor who first wrote about it.

If your blood sugar drops too low in the middle of the night while you are sleeping, your body will release hormones in an attempt to rescue you from the dangerously low blood sugar. The hormones do this by prompting your liver to release stored glucose in larger amounts than usual. But this system isnt perfect in a person with diabetes, so the liver releases more sugar than needed which leads to a high blood sugar level in the morning. This is the Somogyi effect.

High Blood Sugar Levels In Morning

how to lower glucose levels in the morning ~ Blood Sugar ...

Many people experience high blood sugar levels in the morning. This can be a cause for concern. However, there are some easy ways to manage it. that high blood sugar levels dont interfere with your day.

The first step is simply to check your daily food intake. Also, make sure youre not consuming high amounts of carbohydrates before bedtime. Theres nothing wrong with eating healthy carbs. However, many people have trouble sleeping if they eat too much late at night. This means that high blood sugar levels will occur early in the morning instead of later on in the day when your body has had time to process them all.


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    No More High Blood Sugar In The Morning

    Its important to recognise that morning hyperglycemia is fairly normal: its usually your body trying to get you ready for the day .But you can help your body help itself by trying out some changes in your routine or medication. And Hedia wants to help you to help your body to help itself! Give yourself a good morning by visiting the App Store and

    Symptoms And Signs Of High Blood Sugar

    Other symptoms and signs of high blood sugar include:

  • Sunburns. Pain from a sunburn causes pain, which increases blood sugars.
  • Coffee. Some people with diabetes have an extra sensitivity to caffeine.
  • Gum disease. Gum disease is a complication of diabetes, and can make blood sugars rise.
  • Loosing sleep. Going a night or two without sleeping can cause the body to use insulin less efficiently.
  • Nose spray. Some nasal sprays have chemicals that trigger the liver to make more blood sugar.

    Severely elevated blood sugar levels can result in a medical emergency . This can occur in both people with type 1 and those with type 2 diabetes. People with type 1 diabetes may develop diabetic ketoacidosis , and those with type 2 diabetes can develop hyperglycemic hyperosmolar nonketotic syndrome . These so-called hyperglycemia crises are serious conditions that can be life threatening if not treated immediately. Hyperglycemic crises cause about 2,400 deaths each year in the U.S.

    Over time, hyperglycemia can lead to damage to organs and tissues. Long-term hyperglycemia can impair the immune response, leading to poor healing of cuts and wounds. It can also cause nerve damage, vision problems, and damage to the blood vessels and kidneys .

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    Target Blood Sugar Levels For Pregnant Women With Diabetes

    It’s possible for diabetes to cause problems during pregnancy. For example, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, women with type 1 and type 2 diabetes who have uncontrolled blood sugar levels could experience an increased risk of having a premature baby, needing a C-section and more.

    Gestational diabetes a type of diabetes that occurs in a pregnant woman who has never been diagnosed with diabetes before can also cause complications. These include giving birth to a baby who is larger than average and an increased risk of needing a C-section. The ADA suggests that pregnant women shoot for a target fasting blood sugar level of 95 mg/dL or less before a meal.

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    If You Are Taking Levemir During The Morning

    Why is your morning blood sugar high? | Dr Anthony Talorico

    Levemir is a long acting insulin that has duration of between 18 and 24 hours.

    If you take Levemir in the morning, this can mean that the effects of the insulin can wear off during the night.

    This may also be the case, albeit to a lesser extent, if you are on a split dose of Levemir, that is taking an injection during the evening and an additional dose at breakfast.

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    What Is High Blood Sugar

    Hyperglycemia is the medical term describing an abnormally high blood glucose level. Blood sugar is measured in a sample of blood taken from a vein or from a small finger stick sample of blood. It can be measured in a laboratory either alone or with other blood tests, or it can be measured using a handheld glucometer, a small device that allows frequent monitoring of blood glucose levels without the need for a doctor’s office or laboratory.

    Hyperglycemia or high blood sugar is a hallmark sign of diabetes and prediabetes. Normal ranges for blood glucose measurements can vary slightly among different laboratories, but in general a fasting glucose level is considered normal if it is between 70-100 mg/dL. Glucose levels may rise slightly above this range following a meal. Random blood glucose measurements are usually lower than 125 mg/dL.

    Normal Fast Blood Sugar

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    How To Lower High Blood Sugar

    With careful monitoring and control of your blood sugar levels, you can live a healthy life. There are a number of ways you can lower and prevent high blood sugar.

    Learn to count carbohydrates: When you count carbs or keep track of what you are eating, you can control your blood sugar more efficiently. Set a maximum amount you can have each day for your meal,s and keep track to make sure you do not go past the limit. This helps to stabilize blood sugar and prevent dangerous spikes. Portion control is important too, so make sure your meals are not too large, as these can cause temporary spikes.

    Try meal planning: To help keep track of your carbohydrate intake, start planning your meals. Based on the amount of carbohydrates you can have, plan meals accordingly, so you do not risk going above the set limit. When your meals are planned, you also avoid eating out or getting convenience food, which contains more sugar and fat, and will negatively affect your blood sugar.

    Start a weight loss program: Obesity contributes to diabetes and impairs your bodys ability to process energy efficiently. Losing weight helps your body to use insulin more efficiently, and it reduces fat storage, which can trigger inflammation in the body.

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