A Low Blood Sugar Level Without Diabetes
A low blood sugar level is uncommon in people who do not have diabetes.
Possible causes include:
- a gastric bypass
- other medical conditions, such as problems with your hormone levels, pancreas, liver, kidneys, adrenal glands or heart
- some medicines, including quinine
See a GP if you think you keep getting symptoms of a low blood sugar level. They can arrange some simple tests to check if your blood sugar level is low and try to find out what’s causing it.
What Causes Fasting Glucose To Be High
Elevated-carb night snacking and a lack of diabetic medicines are two common causes of high blood sugar in the morning. The dawn phenomenon and the Somogyi effect are two lesser-known causes of morning blood sugar problems.
The dawn phenomenon occurs when eating too much at night leads to high blood sugars during the early hours of the morning, which then drops as you wake up. This can happen even if you do not eat again until breakfast time. If this is causing your blood sugars to be out of control, your doctor may want to see you more frequently or start you on insulin earlier.
The Somogyi effect happens when taking certain medications causes your blood sugars to drop in the early hours of the morning. These drugs include ibuprofen , naproxen , and aspirin. If you are taking any of these medications, talk to your doctor about changing them so that you do not go into hypoglycemia mode when you sleep.
If you don’t take care of the problem quickly, it can lead to neuropathy, which is when your nerves become damaged due to high blood sugars over a long period of time. That’s why it’s important to keep your blood sugars under control if you have diabetes.
Why Does My Blood Sugar Go Up In The Morning Without Eating
The Somogyi effect, commonly known as “rebound hyperglycemia,” can induce high blood sugar in the morning. It might also be the consequence of the dawn phenomenon, which is the final outcome of a series of natural physiological changes. The dawn phenomenon occurs when your body’s response to rising glucose levels is to release insulin more rapidly than normal. This over-release of insulin causes your blood sugar level to fall at night, despite the fact that you haven’t eaten anything for 12 hours.
You are more likely to experience rebound hyperglycemia if one or more of the following conditions apply to you:
You have type 1 diabetes. With this form of diabetes, your body doesn’t produce any insulin. You must take insulin to control your blood sugar levels throughout the day.
With type 2 diabetes, you lose the ability to produce enough insulin. You must take insulin daily to control your blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of developing serious complications. Even with treatment, people with type 2 diabetes are at increased risk for cardiovascular disease, the number-one cause of death in this population.
You are overweight or obese. Being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Obesity also affects how well you respond to therapy, including how much insulin you need per unit of time.
About Article Author
You May Like: What Causes Blood To Hemolyze
Why Your Blood Sugar Is Low At Night And What To Do About It
While alterations in blood sugar are often thought to apply to people who have diabetes, adults without diabetes also experience dips and rises in their blood sugar that have effects on their body. What you eat, how much, when and at what times all impact your blood sugar levels. Heres what might be going on:
Why Is My Blood Sugar Low At Night And High In The Morning
Too much insulin or not enough food before bed: A person’s blood sugar level may drop too low throughout the night. To elevate this level, the body responds by producing hormones. In the evening, take a low insulin dose: If a person takes too little insulin at night, they may wake up with high blood sugar. To correct this problem, they need to take an extra shot of insulin or have some fruit juice or milk available to eat when they wake up.
Low insulin or high levels of glucose in the blood: If a person has low insulin or high levels of glucose for a long time, their bodies will adapt to keep the blood sugar level constant at a high level during the night. When this situation occurs overnight, it can cause serious problems because organs such as the heart and kidneys are affected by blood sugar levels.
People who sleep well but get up several times during the night to go to the bathroom may be causing their own problem by ignoring these signs. If you know that you will be sleeping for more than six hours, make sure to start eating something before bed so that your blood sugar won’t fall too low during those hours.
If you suspect that you may have a nighttime blood sugar problem, ask your doctor for advice on how to check your levels accurately. Then set out to fix the problem!
Why Does My Blood Sugar Go Up At Night A Detailed Guide
10 min read
Diabetes causes many complications when not properly managed, and one of them is high blood sugar at night. People with diabetes usually experience night high blood sugar in three phases before they sleep, when they sleep, and after they wake up.
Also, apart from established diabetics, people can experience a blood sugar spike at night if theyre vulnerable to developing diabetes or do things that could increase their blood sugar levels just before they sleep.
The good thing about elevated blood sugar levels at night is that you can prevent it, or at the very least, reduce it with the proper management tips. This article/guide examines how to successfully maintain low blood sugar at night by throwing light on the cause of the blood sugar spikes at night, the kind of people susceptible to it, and the solutions to live healthier.
What to expect?
- Which Set of People Have High Blood Sugar at Night?
- The Different Stages of Night-Influenced High Blood Sugar Level
- High Blood Sugar at Night: Symptoms
- How to Prevent Blood Sugar Spikes at Night
How Do I Treat Low Blood Glucose
If you begin to feel one or more symptoms of low blood glucose, check your blood glucose level. If your blood glucose level is below your target or less than 70 mg/dL, follow these steps
Don’t Miss: Low Level Of Blood Urea Nitrogen
What Causes A Low Blood Sugar Level
In people with diabetes, the main causes of a low blood sugar level are:
- the effects of medicine especially taking too much insulin, medicines called sulfonylureas , medicines called glinides , or some antiviral medicines to treat hepatitis C
- skipping or delaying a meal
- not eating enough carbohydrate foods in your last meal, such as bread, cereals, pasta, potatoes and fruit
- exercise, especially if it’s intense or unplanned
- drinking alcohol
Sometimes there’s no obvious reason why a low blood sugar level happens.
Very occasionally, it can happen in people who do not have diabetes.
Dealing With Low Blood Sugar And Night Sweats
- Test your glucose levels before bed: If levels are already on the low side, you can take preventative action before going to sleep.
- Watch what you eat in the evening:
- Avoid wine, beer or other alcoholic drinks in the hours before bed
- Increase snacking if youve been more physically active during the day
- Avoid hot and spicy foods as these can cause night sweats even in those who dont have diabetes
Also Check: Are Herpes Blood Tests Accurate
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.
Can Sleep Raise Or Lower Glucose Levels
Although it sounds contradictory, sleep can both raise and lower glucose levels. Our bodies experience a cycle of changes every daycalled a circadian rhythmwhich naturally raises blood sugar levels at night and when a person sleeps. These natural blood sugar elevations are not a cause for concern.
Restorative sleep might also lower unhealthy blood sugar levels by promoting healthy systems. levels. Even partial sleep deprivation over one night increases insulin resistance, which can in turn increase blood sugar levels. As a result, a lack of sleep has been associated with diabetes, a blood sugar disorder.
More research is needed to better understand the connection between sleep and blood sugar. So far, the following factors have been found to influence the relationship between sleep and blood sugar levels:
- Inflammatory markers IL-6 and TNF-alpha are increased by sleep deprivation and can cause insulin resistance, which impacts glucose
You May Like: Can Pregnancy Blood Test Be Wrong
What Can You Do
To keep your blood sugar in balance, try to get at least 7 hours of sleep each night.
If you work at night or have rotating shifts: Try to maintain regular meal and sleep times, even on your days off, if you can. And get some exercise during your breaks, like short walks or stretches.
If youâre concerned about your blood sugar: Getting a good nightâs sleep on a regular basis will go a long way toward helping your body use insulin efficiently. Along with getting enough sleep, avoid eating late at night, and try to get some exercise after dinner, like going for a walk.
If you have diabetes: If your blood sugar is often too high in the morning, talk to your doctor. You may need to do some extra blood sugar testing or use a continuous glucose monitor to figure out whatâs going on, which will determine how you should handle it. Your doctor may suggest a tweak to your diabetes medicines or your exercise routine.
Symptoms Of Mild Low Blood Sugar
You may have these symptoms when your blood sugar has dropped below 70 milligrams per deciliter . When you have had diabetes for many years, you may not always develop symptoms of mild low blood sugar.
Some young children with diabetes cannot recognize symptoms of low blood sugar. Others can, but not every time. To be safe, the parents need to do a home blood sugar test whenever they suspect low blood sugar in a child.
Symptoms may include:
- Sweating . Check for sweating on the back of your neck at your hairline.
- Nervousness, shakiness, and weakness.
- Extreme hunger and slight nausea.
- Dizziness and headache.
- A fast heartbeat and feeling anxious.
These symptoms may go away shortly after you eat food that contains sugar.
Also Check: Is Low White Blood Count Serious
How To Prevent Low Blood Sugar At Night
Expert Reviewed Three Methods:Avoiding Triggers of Low Blood Sugar Levels at NightStabilizing Your Blood Sugar Levels with DietCoping with Low Blood Sugar Levels at NightCommunity Q& A Low blood sugar levels can wake you up in the middle of the night with feelings of anxiousness, nausea, dizziness and hunger. Nighttime hypoglycemia is a common concern for Type 1 diabetics, since the pancreas no longer secretes insulin to compensate for the lows. Keeping track of your diet to ensure adequate protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats is equally important for anyone who is experiencing low blood sugar at night. If you are diabetic, it is important to monitor your blood sugar levels throughout the day and especially at night to prevent hypoglycemia. In addition, you should find a bedtime routine that is both comfortable and predictable while avoiding exercise, alcohol and other disruptions of your regular nighttime routine.Continue reading > >
How Does Blood Glucose Affect Sleep
Just as sleep affects blood sugar levels, blood sugar levels may also impact sleep quality. A study of people with type 2 diabetes found that those with higher blood sugar levels experience poorer sleep. Another study found that 62% of people with glucose levels in the pre-diabetes range are likely to have poor sleep, compared to 46% of people with normal glucose levels.
Researchers arent certain why increased blood sugar may be associated with poor sleep and more study is necessary to understand the relationship.
You May Like: How To Remove Blood Clot In Leg
Consider A Continuous Glucose Monitor
If you have repeated hypoglycemia despite lifestyle and medication changes, you might be a good candidate for a continuous glucose monitor.
A CGM is also beneficial for other blood sugar problems like the Dawn Phenomenon, which is when morning blood sugar levels are high.
CGMs continually measure your blood sugar levels every minute to every few minutes. CGMs can alert you if your blood sugar is trending downward or if it falls below a determined threshold.
Using a CGM gives you more feedback in real-time compared to checking your blood sugar with a standard glucometer. A CGM can help you make adjustments to avoid nighttime lows.
What Are The Signs Of Hypoglycemia
An individual may frequently wake up in the middle of the night as a result of nighttime hypoglycemia. In other instances, though, people may know if they experienced hypoglycemia during their sleep if they notice the following symptoms:
- Waking up with a headache
- Waking up in a sweat
- Getting unusual feelings of tiredness throughout the day
- Experiencing anxiety or heart palpitations
- Feeling confused, dizzy or weak
Don’t Miss: Blood Collection Tubes Order Of Draw
What Are The Signs Of Nighttime Hypoglycemia
Signs that youve experienced nighttime hypoglycemia can include:
- Sweating: waking up with damp clothes/sheets
- Waking up with a headache
- Having nightmares
- Feeling unusually tired in the morning
- Waking up with a higher than usual glucose level
You may also wake up with a higher glucose reading, which is a result of your body rebounding from the overnight low glucose. Experiencing a fast heartbeat and anxiety before bed may be an indication of approaching hypoglycemia.
Preventing Night Time Hypoglycemia
A useful first step towards preventing hypoglycemia is to test your blood glucose levels before bed.
For people on two or more insulin injections per day can help prevent hypos over night keeping blood glucose levels above 6.5 mmol/l before going to bed.
If over night hypos are suspected, carry out a test at 3am. Together with a before bed and first thing in the morning test, this can help to understand how your sugar levels are behaving over night.
If sugar levels are dropping too low over night, you may need to adjust your insulin doses. Speak to your doctor if you need help with correctly adjusting your insulin
The other way to prevent sugar levels going too low is to take some carbohydrate before bed.
Hypos can also be prevented by:
- Ensuring you basal insulin dose is not too high
- Reducing your night time/evening long acting insulin following exercise
- Taking carbohydrate before bed following an evening/night of drinking
- Not missing out dinner or any snacks you would usually have
Read Also: Light Blood In Discharge But Not Period
Treating An Episode Of Hypoglycaemia
The immediate treatment for hypoglycaemia is to have some sugary food or drink to end the attack.
For example, this could be:
- a glass of fruit juice or non-diet soft drink
- between three and five dextrose tablets
- a handful of sweets
At first you should avoid fatty foods and drinks, such as chocolate and milk, because they don’t usually contain as much sugar and the sugar they do contain may be absorbed more slowly.
After having something sugary, you should have a longer-acting carbohydrate food, such as a few biscuits, a cereal bar, a piece of fruit or a sandwich.
It will usually take around 15 minutes to recover from a mild episode of hypoglycaemia. If you have a blood glucose meter, measure your blood sugar again after 15 to 20 minutes. If it’s still too low , you should have some more sugary food or a drink before testing your levels again in another 15 to 20 minutes.
When treating someone else with hypoglycaemia, if the above treatment isn’t effective, you may be able to help them by applying glucose gel to the inside of their cheeks, and gently massaging the outside of their cheeks.
It may take 10 to 15 minutes before they feel better. This shouldn’t be done if the person is drowsy or unconscious because of the risk of choking.