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Diabetes Monitoring

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Why do My Blood Sugars Always Run Higher in the Morning?

Nina Ghamrawi, MS, RD, CDE

Generally, glucose will be higher in the morning than at night for a few reasons:

  1. Glucose rises overnight because liver is overacting in releasing glucose from storage,
  2. We are having a dinner meal or evening snack that is high starch or high fat, which slows how quickly glucose gets absorbed, or
  3. Medications we are on at night are not enough to cover the natural rise in glucose from the above reasons.

We can do a number of things to make this better:

  1. As we see diet improve, we will see overall blood sugars improve.
  2. As we see more weight loss, we generally see the body less resistant to glucose absorption and better metabolism of glucose.
  3. Changing or reducing snacking before bed, or adding more medications before bed may also help.
  4. Adding some strengthening exercises will stimulate the muscles to absorb glucose better for energy. The more muscle we have on our body, the better our glucose will be absorbed even when we sleep.
  5. Take more medications - by far the easiest solution, but if there are other things that you are motivated to change above, the lifestyle changes will only have positive effects for your health.

With the knowledge of why your numbers are this way,  you are better able to understand how making specific changes may help.  Keep up the great work, and definitely ask us if you have questions!