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Not getting enough sleep may raise your blood sugars | Diabetes Daily Post
Understanding How Sleep Effects Your Blood Sugar.

Not getting enough sleep may raise your blood sugars

sleepNot getting enough sleep may raise your blood sugars. If you are not getting a full night’s sleep, this may lead to elevated blood sugars and worsen your diabetes control. The main job of insulin in the body is to remove sugar (glucose) out of your blood so that it can be used for energy and bodily functions. In people with diabetes, their bodies either do not produce enough insulin, or the insulin that they produce is not working as well as it should be, a complication referred to as insulin resistance. Recent studies have shown that lack of enough sleep can affect how well your insulin works in your body.

In a study in patients with type 1 diabetes, those that got only four hours of sleep had much higher blood sugars the next morning then when they got a full night’s sleep. When healthy people without diabetes were tested, their insulin also didn’t work as well to remove glucose. Their insulin resistance was similar to that of someone with diabetes.

To lower your blood sugars, you need more than just a healthy life style with a good diet and purposeful exercise. You need to get a good night’s sleep. Most researchers say that 6-8 hours of sleep is enough. Getting less than 6 hours may increase insulin resistance and worsen your diabetes control.  If you aren’t getting enough sleep, try to determine why and make some changes. Try to get to bed earlier if you can. Here are a few tips to sleep at night if you might be having trouble: avoid stimulants such as caffeinated beverages and nicotine in the evenings. Try to minimize napping during the day if it keeps you up at night. Eating a large meal too close to bedtime can cause problems falling asleep. Do your strenuous exercises in the morning, and try to do relaxing exercises such as yoga closer to bedtime. When going to bed, try not to look at your phone or any other sources of light other than natural light, as this can throw off your sleep cycle. Also, try associating your bed with only sleep, and try to avoid watching TV, listening to the radio, or reading books in bed.

If you still are having trouble sleeping, ask your pharmacist or health care provider if any of your medications could be causing insomnia and ask for an alternative treatment.  It may take some time to undo bad sleep habits.  Speak to your health care provider for help if you are still having trouble.

This Article is Brought to you By Our Guest Staff Writers:
Calvin Nguyen PharmD Candidate 2017 MCPHS University
Jennifer Goldman, RPh, PharmD, CDE, BC-ADM Professor of Pharmacy Practice, MCPHS University, Boston, MA
Clinical Pharmacist, Well Life, Peabody, MA

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