Diabetes is a chronic condition in which blood glucose levels are too high ( hyperglycemia ). People with this condition often worry about high blood sugar levels in the morning. It is so common that it has a name: the phenomenon of dawn . As our body prepares to wake up in the morning, it releases a surge of hormones that can work against insulin and cause blood sugar to rise. Also called the dawn effect, it can affect anyone and is generally not a problem because the body naturally produces insulin to correct it, but the body of people with diabetes may not respond in the same way. This leads to consistently high blood sugar levels in the morning.
You can lower your blood sugar without medicine by making lifestyle and diet changes. If simple lifestyle changes don't help, people with diabetes should consult with their doctor to determine the best way to lower their blood sugar in the morning.
Limit carbohydrates at night
Diet plays an important role in managing diabetes and maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. People with diabetes need to understand which foods are best and worst for the disease. Carbohydrates are an important part of any diet, but they should be eaten in moderation. It is important to keep in mind that the body converts 100% of the carbohydrates we eat into glucose. For this reason, people with diabetes are advised to use carbohydrate counting to keep track of the amount of carbohydrates they consume.
One way to avoid a blood sugar spike in the morning is to limit your carbohydrate intake in the evening. Pay attention to the amount of carbohydrates you eat at dinner or as a late-night snack. The recommended serving of carbohydrates is different for each person, depending on their weight, activity level, diabetes medications, and blood sugar goals. The general guidelines from the American Diabetes Association are 45 to 60 grams of carbohydrate for each meal and 15 to 20 grams of carbohydrate for each snack.
A high-fiber, low-fat snack before bed can satisfy hunger and minimize the effects of dawn. Here are some good snack options that can help prevent high blood sugar levels in the morning:
- Fruits and vegetables
- Low-fat or fat-free yogurt
- Low-fat popcorn
- Lean granola
- Boiled egg
- Sugar free frozen palette
- Small apple and skim cheese
- Half turkey sandwich
Exercise lowers blood sugar by increasing insulin sensitivity, allowing the body to use insulin and glucose more efficiently by increasing glucose movement during and after exercise. Research has shown that exercise leads to optimal insulin regulation. Exercising after dinner can help you maintain a stable glucose level in the morning.
Studies have also shown that moderate intensity aerobic exercise before breakfast reduces morning blood glucose rises in patients with type 2 diabetes, partially neutralizing the dawn phenomenon. The same study also found that exercise significantly reduced blood glucose fluctuations and improved blood glucose control throughout the day.
Here are some of the best exercises to help you avoid blood sugar spikes in the morning:
- Tai Chi
Combined with a healthy diet and other recommendations, an affordable and affordable way to prevent blood sugar spikes is to supplement your diet with vinegar. Vinegar has been found to lower glucose levels while awake and lower blood sugar after a meal. In vivo studies have shown that vinegar inhibits the conversion of sucrose to glucose and fructose.
The active ingredient in vinegar is acetic acid, which reduces the digestion of starch and slows gastric emptying ( gastroparesis ) when the stomach takes too long to empty its contents.
An easy way to add vinegar to your day is by injecting apple cider vinegar , which experts say is a promising way to lower your blood sugar in the morning. Apple cider vinegar has been shown to improve serum HbA1c and triglyceride levels in diabetic rats.
Watch out for lunchtime fat
Healthy fats are an essential part of a healthy diet, but they can negatively affect blood sugar levels. High-fat dinners can delay the normal rise in blood sugar after a meal until the next morning.
This is because fat slows down the digestion process and the body. Since fatty foods can also contribute to obesity , which is a major risk factor for diabetes, eating less fat and more protein is a good approach for people with diabetes.
The American Diabetes Association recommends that you include more monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in your diet than saturated or trans fats. Examples of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats include:
- Rapeseed oil
- Nuts like almonds, cashews, walnuts, and peanuts
- Olive oil and olives (look for low sodium or low sodium foods)
- Peanut butter and peanut butter
- Fatty fish (salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel, tuna)
- Flaxseed and linseed oil
- Rapeseed oil
- chia seeds
Examples of saturated and trans fats to avoid:
- Fatty and salty pork
- Fatty meats such as ground beef, bologna, hot dogs, hot dogs, bacon, and ribs.
- High-fat dairy products, such as cheese, cream, ice cream, whole milk, 2% milk, and sour cream.
- Creamy sauces
- Meat sauce
- Bird skin
- Processed foods such as snacks (crackers and potato chips) and baked goods (muffins, cookies, and cakes) with hydrogenated butter or partially hydrogenated butter.
- Some instant foods, like French fries.
Prevent nocturnal hypoglycemia
Hypoglycemia refers to low blood sugar levels. This is the opposite of hyperglycemia and occurs when glucose levels are too low. Low blood sugar levels at night can cause blood sugar levels to rise in the morning, known as the Somogi effect. It occurs when your blood sugar level drops during the night and your body releases hormones to counteract the drop, causing your blood sugar level to rise in the morning.
Therefore, it is important to make sure you have enough food before bed by balancing your meal or snack to avoid the dawn phenomenon.
Common symptoms of hypoglycemia include:
- Anxiety or panic
- Tingling in the mouth
- Fast heartbeat
People with diabetes should check their blood sugar frequently and keep light snacks on hand. Call your doctor right away if you have these symptoms.
Share your experience with your healthcare provider.
While you can change your diet and lifestyle to avoid blood sugar spikes in the morning, working with your healthcare provider is a priority. Changes in treatment may be required, especially if those changes do not help you avoid the effects of sunrise.
Possible reasons for changing your medication may include:
- Weight changes
- Activity changes
- Diet changes
- Recent illness
Be sure to tell your doctor if you experience high blood sugar in the morning and if none of these strategies help. They are familiar with this phenomenon and can help you change your drug regimen by increasing your dose or adding another drug.
Never change your medicine without first talking to your doctor.
Get the word of drug information
Many people living with diabetes are hesitant to start taking new medications or are unaware of lifestyle and diet changes that can help. The above strategies are natural ways that can help you avoid the sunrise phenomenon. However, working with your healthcare provider should come first in your fight against diabetes. Make sure you know the symptoms of high blood sugar in the morning and when to seek help from your healthcare professional.