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How to Lower a High Blood Sugar

Nina Ghamrawi, MS, RD, CDE
October 3, 2022
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If you’ve ever searched online for how to lower a high blood sugar, you may have noticed that the first articles that show in search results are to market supplements, products or services, or fake home remedies. That can be confusing, and sometimes quite convincing. But if you are glucose is high, there are some tricks that are sure to work.

The trick to lowering a high glucose is to first understand why it is high. There are several lifestyle factors that can affect blood sugars. It is also important to know when it is high, because that makes a difference. Are they always higher in the morning and normalize throughout the day? Do they get gradually higher as the day goes on? Or are they unusually high many hours after your last meal?

Not Enough Water

  • If you aren’t drinking enough water, or you just came from the sauna/steam room, you may be dehydrated. Dehydration causes the body to have less blood water volume, making blood glucose appear higher. If this is the case, just drink more water to rehydrate yourself. Recheck glucose to see if it normalizes.

Ate Too Much or Ate High Sugar/Carbohydrate Foods

  • Many of us know when we ate too much carbohydrate, but not always. Remember there are some sneaky foods that raise glucose, like many foods that are gluten free or sugar free, beans, lentils, milk, and also yogurt.
  • If you aren’t sure if your meal caused the high blood sugars, do a paired reading - check glucose right before the first bite, and also 2 hours later. It is also important to take a picture of what you ate. Discuss the patterns with your Dietitian to see what amounts and types of foods are recommended for the best glucose response.

Not Active Enough

  • If you skip your normal workout routine, blood sugar levels may be higher than on your workout days. If you plan to skip a workout, also adjust your meal intake accordingly. Ask the dietitian for help regarding how to change your meal.

Not Enough Medications

  • If you’ve skipped a dose of your medications, or you notice that blood sugars are consistently high every day at certain times, this may mean you need a medication or diet adjustment. If you’ve already spoken with the Dietitian and made some changes, then chances are you’ll need to talk with your doctor about a possible medication change.

Not Enough Food or Too Much Exercise

  • Are you over-restricting calories to lose weight, or did you just to a very hard workout? Many times, when we don’t get enough energy in, or when our muscles need more energy for exercise, our body compensates by making energy from your stored glucose. The body will release this extra glucose into the blood to help prevent low blood sugars. It’s the body’s safety mechanism to prevent a hypoglycemic episode or coma.

Regardless the reason, having a glucose that rises and falls drastically is not healthy for the body. Try to get your blood sugars steady enough so that they don’t go too low, or too high. That’s the best way to fight off Diabetes risks.

Takeaways

Talk to your doctor and Diabetes Educator if you’re getting high blood sugars and you don’t know why. Besides lifestyle, diet or routine, it may be medications that you’ll need to adjust. Your doctor and care team can help you find the issues with your high glucose and help keep your glucose steady.

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