How Is It Determined If The Dawn Phenomenon Or Somogyi Effect Is Causing The High Blood Sugar Levels
Your doctor will likely ask you to check your blood sugar levels between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. for several nights in a row. If your blood sugar is consistently low during this time, the Somogyi effect is suspected. If the blood sugar is normal during this time period, the dawn phenomenon is more likely to be the cause.
Some additional clues that the Somogyi effect may be the cause include nightmares, restless sleep and overnight sweating as these are all signs of low blood sugar levels.
What To Do If Your Blood Sugar Is High In The Morning
Can you now identify some of the reasons your blood sugar is high in the morning?
Diagnosing And Treating Hyperglycemia
Diagnosing hyperglycemia is done by assessing symptoms and performing a simple blood glucose test. Depending on the severity of the condition and which type of diabetes the patient is diagnosed with, insulin and a variety of medication may be prescribed to help the person keep their blood sugar under control. Insulin comes in short, long and fast-acting forms, and a person suffering from type 1 diabetes is likely to be prescribed some combination of these.
Individuals who are either diagnosed with type 2 diabetes or are considered at risk for the disease are recommended to make alterations to their diet, lifestyle habits and exercise routine in order to lower blood sugar and keep it under control. These changes generally help to improve blood glucose control, individuals with type 2 diabetes may require medication eventually. These can include glitazones, acarbose, glucophage or sulphonylureas.
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Breakthrough Not Only During Puberty
The phenomenon of belching occurs mainly in patients with type 1 diabetes, especially in adolescents during puberty. It affects 25% to 50% of people with type 1 diabetes and 3% to 50% of type 2 diabetes. It is associated with increased secretion of growth hormone by the pituitary gland.
However, growth hormones, adrenaline, glucagon, and cortisol are secreted throughout life, so more or less severe belching can occur in all age groups. However, in their case, the usual mechanism of insulin secretion and normal insulin sensitivity of tissues prevents the occurrence of hyperglycemia.
To confirm this disorder, glycemia should be monitored at night on the 24th, 4th, 5th, and 6th morning and upon awakening. Glycemia at 24 should be within the normal range, with a gradual increase starting at 4.
How To Prevent Morning Hyperglycemia
While morning hyperglycemia could be the bodys automatic response, you can certainly take steps to try to prevent it.
You could try some general steps that could help lower blood sugar in the night, such as eating your evening meals earlier in the day or having fewer carbs in your evening meal.
Alternatively, you could consider doing exercise in the evening, such as a brisk walk before bed. You might also consider changing your medication doses for the night or changing the type of insulin you use. As always, make such changes in consultation with your healthcare professional.
If you think that the high blood sugar might be caused by the dawn phenomenon, then try to make sure that you are well-rested. If your body is getting enough rest, with a full eight hours of sleep, then it might not think that it needs to release that extra energy. More generally, stress and diabetes leads to higher blood sugar levels so it is worth getting enough sleep.
With the Somogyi phenomenon, youll want to take the opposite steps because you want to prevent low blood sugar during the night. It may seem somewhat counterintuitive, but you might need to take less insulin, or eat more carbs, or do less exercise before bed.
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What Causes High Blood Sugar Levels In Morning
The majority of the time, your bodys natural hormonal changes in the morning raise blood sugar levels, whether you have diabetes or not. Your body just produces more insulin to bring everything back into balance. You wont realize its happening.
However, if you have diabetes, things are a bit more complicated. Even though you follow a nutritious diet. Your fasting blood sugar level might rise even if you dont take insulin properly.
The sugar surge is your bodys method of making sure you have the energy to get out of bed and begin your day. If you have diabetes, your body may not be producing enough insulin to counteract these hormones. This disrupts the delicate equilibrium that you work so hard to maintain. This further causes your blood sugar levels to be excessively high by morning.
Your Livers Response To Fasting
Another reason why your blood sugar could be high in the morning is due to your livers response to an overnight fast. As you sleep, your body enters into a fasting state, but it knows you will need energy to start your day when you wake up. And thats where the liver comes in.
Your liver produces its own sugar to help regulate your blood sugar levels so that you have energy even when youre not eating. Extra sugar production from your liver, in combination with increased insulin resistance , can lead to a higher morning blood sugar.
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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.
Why Is My Morning Blood Sugar So High
A complex array of factors affects blood sugar levels, including hormones, diet, and lifestyle.
Q: I have prediabetes and now eat minimal carbs and sugar. My doctor told me to monitor my sugar levels, morning and night. At night, two hours after eating, my sugar levels are between 112 and 130 mg/dL . But in the morning, my fasting sugar level is always higher than the night number. Why is that? What am I doing wrong?
There are a few reasons why your blood sugar may be elevated in the morning. First, its important to understand that certain hormonal changes that occur overnight may lead to high blood sugar levels in the morning.
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Why Is My Blood Sugar High In The Morning
High blood sugar in the morning is mysterious to the extent that it may be a phenomenon. Specifically: the dawn phenomenon.
This is where hormones are released in the early hours of the morning. In turn, the hormones make the liver release its store of glycogen , thus raising blood sugar levels.
Its not exactly known why this happens, but these hormones are usually released to give extra energy. So, the theory is that the body releases extra glucose in order to give you extra energy to wake up and start the day.
Obviously, this extra glucose doesnt help those with diabetes, but at least the bodys trying. Its the thought that counts, right?
There may also be another potential reason for high blood sugar in the morning: the Somogyi phenomenon . This can occur as a result of insulin use.
Its theorised that taking insulin before bed can cause the body to have a rebound effect whilst sleeping. If insulin continues to lower blood sugar during sleep, and its not being treated, then the body responds in stress mode: it releases hormones to trigger a rise in blood sugar levels.
But for those with diabetes, this doesnt stabilise the blood sugar. That extra glucose cant be used without diabetes medication, and so, the blood sugar gets too high instead.
There could be other reasons for high blood sugar in the morning, such as too many carbs before bed or requiring a different level of insulin. We can look at what to do about that in a moment.
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
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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.
Get Adequate Quantity And Quality Of Sleep
Your mom was right â sleep is important.
Sleep is a bit of a Catch-22. Both the quantity and quality of sleep are affected by blood glucose levels, yet blood glucose levels are also modulated by sleep.
So, where do you start?
You can always begin with the fundamentals of sleep hygiene:
- Make sleep a priority
- Cool, dark, quiet environment
- Consistent sleep schedule
- Monitor caffeine intake, particularly within 10-12 hours of sleep
- Adequate early morning light exposure
- Restricted light & screen exposure within 2-3 hours of sleep
Additionally, rather than thinking of sleep as an isolated tool, think of it as a synergistic link. Like a chain of people connected together, each link supports the other.
If your sleep consistency and quality are inadequate, sometimes strengthening the other âlinksâ can indirectly improve them. Weâve already discussed some of these links: nutrition, exercise, and stress management.
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Blood Sugar And Sleep
A lot goes on in your body while youâre sleeping. Aside from dreaming, memory formation, muscle repair, and other functions, your body actively manages glucose during your slumber.
In a healthy human, itâs normal for blood sugar to fall a couple of hours after their last meal and remain on the low end of healthy fasted blood sugarâhealthy being 72 to 100 mg/dLâuntil early morning. Your body doesnât require as much energy to perform basic functions at night, thus it doesnât require as much circulating glucose or as much of the hormone insulin.
< p class=”pro-tip”> Read more:Why it’s important to improve your sleep quality< /p>
Why Blood Sugar Levels Rise Overnight
When you go to bed, your blood sugar reading is 110, but when you wake up in the morning, it has shot up to 150. Why does this happen?
To understand how blood sugar levels can rise overnight without your eating anything, we have to look at where glucose comes from and where it goes while we sleep.
During the day, the carbohydrates we eat are digested into glucose and absorbed into the bloodstream. Some of this glucose goes to the liver, where it is stored for later use.
At night, while we are asleep, the liver releases glucose into the bloodstream. The liver acts as our glucose warehouse and keeps us supplied until we eat breakfast. The amount of glucose being used is matched by the amount of glucose being released by the liver, so blood sugar levels should remain constant.
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Random Blood Sugar Test
The Random Blood Sugar test is done any time of the day outside the regular testing timetable. Medical professionals recommend using this test to confirm the presence of diabetes during and after the treatment of diabetes. A level of 200 mg/dl or greater indicates diabetes mellitus.
The primary objective of the RBS test is to check random blood sugar levels. The test helps treat the disease via timely monitoring during and after treatment. The random blood sugar level test is recommended if an individual complains of any of the following signs:
How Are You Sweetening Your Coffee What You Add To Your Cup May Affect Your Blood Sugar Levels
Whether you were recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes or have been living with the condition for several years, you know how fickle blood sugar levels can be, and how important it is that they stay controlled.
Proper blood sugar control is key for warding off potential diabetes complications, such as kidney disease, nerve damage, vision problems, stroke, and heart disease, according to the National Institutes of Health . Plus, keeping your levels in check on a daily basis can help you stay energized, focused, and in a good mood, explains Lisa McDermott, RD, CDCES, a diabetes specialist with the Pittsburgh-based Allegheny Health Network.
According to the American Diabetes Association , proper medication, effective meal planning, regular exercise, and regular blood sugar checks can all help you keep your levels within a healthy range. The ADA recommends blood glucose stay within 80 to 130 milligrams per deciliter before meals and below 180 mg/dL two hours after the start of a meal. Furthermore, the organization recommends getting an A1C test, which measures your average blood glucose over the past two to three months, at least twice per year if your levels are stable and you are meeting treatment goals.
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