How Often Should I Check My Blood Glucose Levels?
Checking one's blood sugar with a glucose monitor is like seeing how fast a car is going with a speedometer. There are times when not checking can be dangerous. The frequency can depend on the type and degree of the diabetes and whether the medication(s) can cause hypoglycemia, low glucose levels, among other factors. If you have type 2 diabetes, it is wise to test upon rising, two hours after you eat, and before bedtime. That’s about four times per day. If you have type 1, you ought to test more often. There was a young boy on the show dLifeTV who tested his blood sugar twelve times a day every day! When you are active, you ought to test more often, as you are burning more calories and need more fuel. Half the Mother, Twice the Love: My Journey to Better Health with Diabetes As a talk-show host and inspirational speaker, Mother Love used to have to just grin and bear it -- all that extra weight and the poor health that went along with it. Today she can truly smile as she... How often you monitor your blood glucose is highly individualized. It depends on: Whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes Your blood glucose goals What supplies you can afford How often you monitor also depends on your reasons for checking your blood glucose. The standard times to check your blood glucose if you have diabetes and are looking for patterns in blood glucose behavior are: before breakfast, lunch, and dinner (or an especially big snack) before you go to bed 1 to 2 hours after breakfast, lunch, and dinner (or an especially big snack) at 2 or 3 a.m. Well…. you’ve got ten fingers, right? OK, relax. I was just teasing. The real answer is never less than two times. That’s because you need to test in pairs (thanks to diabetes educator William Polonsky for coining this term). One tes Continue reading >>
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How Many Times A Day Should A Diabetic Eat?
Controlling blood sugar levels is the most important task in managing diabetes effectively. Uncontrolled blood sugar levels can cause serious complications, including heart disease, organ failure or stroke. Eating the proper foods with the correct frequency is important in improving blood sugar levels. Video of the Day Diabetes is a condition in which blood sugar levels are higher than they should be. This occurs because either your pancreas does not secrete enough insulin to allow blood sugar to enter into cells and tissues or the cells and tissues are resistant to the effects of insulin. To manage this biochemical process, you can control the amount of sugar in your blood, which puts less strain on your pancreas and body to regulate blood sugar levels. How Food Affects Blood Sugar Many variables in your diet affect how high your blood sugar will be after a meal. You must choose foods with a low glycemic index, which is a measurement of how fast your blood sugar will rise after a meal. Furthermore, eating small portions of high-fiber, low-calorie and low-fat foods will help avoid serious complications. Strive to eat a balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, lean meats and low-fat dairy products to improve your blood sugar control. Frequency of Eating Eat smaller portions up to six times per day to control your blood sugars, states SmallStep.gov. To begin, you can try using a smaller, saucer-sized plate to learn how to reduce your portion sizes. Although the foods you may eat per meal may have a different calorie content, you will take in fewer calories per meal than if you are eating on a full plate. For example, a smaller plate of pasta will have fewer calories than a larger plate. Medline Plus further recommends eating your meals at the same times Continue reading >>
Blood Sugar Monitoring: When To Check And Why
Managing diabetes is one part investigation and two parts action. Unlike some other diseases that rely primarily on professional medical treatment, diabetes treatment requires active participation by the person who has it. Monitoring your blood sugar level on a regular basis and analyzing the results is believed by many to be a crucial part of the treatment equation. When someone is first diagnosed with diabetes, he is usually given a blood sugar meter (or told to go buy one) and told how and when to use it, as well as what numbers to shoot for. However, the advice a person receives on when to monitor and what the results should be generally depend on his type of diabetes, age, and state of overall health. It can also depend on a health-care provider’s philosophy of care and which set of diabetes care guidelines he follows. At least three major health organizations have published slightly different recommendations regarding goals for blood sugar levels. There is some common ground when it comes to blood sugar monitoring practices. For example, most people take a fasting reading before breakfast every morning. Some people also monitor before lunch, dinner, and bedtime; some monitor after each meal; and some monitor both before and after all meals. However, when monitoring after meals, some people do it two hours after the first bite of the meal, while others prefer to check one hour after the start of a meal. To help sort out the whys and when of monitoring, three diabetes experts weigh in with their opinions. While they don’t agree on all the details, they do agree on one thing: Regular monitoring is critical in diabetes care. Why monitor? Self-monitoring is an integral part of diabetes management because it puts you in charge. Regardless of how you manage your diab Continue reading >>
Managing Your Blood Sugar
Know the basic steps for managing your diabetes. Poorly managed diabetes can lead to many health problems. Know how to: Monitor your blood sugar (glucose) Find, buy, and store diabetes supplies If you take insulin, you should also know how to: Give yourself insulin Adjust your insulin doses and the foods you eat to manage your blood sugar during exercise and on sick days You should also live a healthy lifestyle. Exercise at least 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. Do muscle strengthening exercises 2 or more days a week. Avoid sitting for more than 30 minutes at a time. Try speed walking, swimming, or dancing. Pick an activity you enjoy. Always check with your doctor before starting any new exercise plans. Follow your meal plan. Take your medicines the way your health care provider recommends. Checking your blood sugar levels often and writing down the results will tell you how well you are managing your diabetes. Talk to your doctor and diabetes educator about how often you should check your blood sugar. Not everyone with diabetes needs to check their blood sugar every day. But some people may need to check it many times a day. If you have type 1 diabetes, check your blood sugar at least 4 times a day. Usually, you will test your blood sugar before meals and at bedtime. You may also check your blood sugar: After you eat out, especially if you have eaten foods you don't normally eat If you feel sick Before and after you exercise If you have a lot of stress If you eat too much If you are taking new medicines Keep a record for yourself and your provider. This will be a big help if you are having problems managing your diabetes. It will also tell you what works and what doesn't work, to keep your blood sugar under control. Write down: The time of day Your blood sugar level Th Continue reading >>
How Often To Test Your Blood Glucose
Checking your blood sugar, keeping a record of your results, and using your results to improve your management is an important part of having diabetes. But before you grab your meter and check your blood glucose level, ask: Why am I checking now? How will I use the information to make decisions in how I manage my diabetes? If you don't know, find out before you do a check. Our blood sugar guide answers your questions about when and how often to check. Checking your blood sugar, keeping a record of your results, and using your results to improve your management is an important part of having diabetes. But before you grab your meter and check your blood glucose level, ask: Why am I checking now? How will I use the information to make decisions in how I manage my diabetes? If you don't know, find out before you do a check. Our blood sugar guide answers your questions about when and how often to check. Checking your blood sugar, keeping a record of your results, and using your results to improve your management is an important part of having diabetes. But before you grab your meter and check your blood glucose level, ask: Why am I checking now? How will I use the information to make decisions in how I manage my diabetes? If you don't know, find out before you do a check. Our blood sugar guide answers your questions about when and how often to check. Checking your blood sugar, keeping a record of your results, and using your results to improve your management is an important part of having diabetes. But before you grab your meter and check your blood glucose level, ask: Why am I checking now? How will I use the information to make decisions in how I manage my diabetes? If you don't know, find out before you do a check. Our blood sugar guide answers your questions about when Continue reading >>
Self-monitoring Of Blood Glucose
What is “self-monitoring of blood glucose”? Self-monitoring of blood glucose means using a home glucose meter to check and track your own blood sugar levels. Being able to check your blood sugar levels on a day-to-day basis can greatly improve your diabetes control. Today’s meters can measure your blood sugar quickly and easily. What meter should I choose? There are more than 20 different meters that vary in size, shape, test time, and memory features. You can choose based on your own preferences and needs. Your health care provider can recommend specific features you might want to look for. Most meters now require only a very small amount of blood. This means that testing is less painful than in the past and that some meters can now use blood from your forearm or thigh instead of your fingertip. Should everyone with diabetes check their blood sugar? The American Diabetes Association recommends that all people with diabetes who are treated with insulin check their blood sugar. For people whose diabetes is not treated with insulin, checking blood sugar is still very helpful in deciding which and how much medicine you may need. How often should I check my blood sugar? How often you need to check your blood sugar depends on your own situation. Most experts agree that patients who use insulin should check at least four times a day, usually before meals and at bedtime. For patients who do not use insulin, how often to check depends on how well your diabetes is controlled. If your blood sugar is very well controlled, you may only need to check once in a while. If your blood sugar is not in your target range, checking more often can provide information about how to get your diabetes under better control. Your health care provider can recommend a schedule for you. How do Continue reading >>
When Should You Test Your Blood Sugar?
Blood sugar testing is a fundamental part of treating type 2 diabetes. By obtaining regular blood sugar readings, people with diabetes can, among other things, help their doctor make more informed decisions regarding the type and dosage of medication they need. Blood sugar testing also can help you see what foods, events, and activities trigger highs and lows in your blood sugar levels. So how often should you test your blood sugar? The answer depends mostly on the status of your health and the demands of your daily life. People with type 2 diabetes should take a blood sugar reading at least once a day. Some may need to test as frequently as seven times a day. Whether you need to or are able to perform more frequent testing depends on a number of factors: Are you newly diagnosed? If so, you will need to take blood sugar tests more often to give your doctors the data they need to shape an appropriate treatment plan. Are you taking insulin? Doctors recommend that people who need insulin to treat their type 2 diabetes perform three or more blood sugar tests throughout the day, especially if they take multiple daily doses or are using an insulin pump. Are you leading an active lifestyle? People participating in sports or working out regularly need to test their blood glucose more often. Are there safety concerns? Patients who drive or operate heavy machinery should test their blood sugar beforehand, to protect both themselves and those around them. Are there factors in your life that limit your ability to test often? For example, people who type at their jobs may need to limit their testing if their fingertips become too painful to work a keyboard. Others may not be able to afford the cost of the test strips needed for frequent testing or can't fit frequent tests into their Continue reading >>
Home Blood Sugar Testing
If you have diabetes, check your blood sugar level as often as instructed by your health care provider. Record the results. This will tell you how well you are managing your diabetes. Not everyone with diabetes needs to check their blood sugar every day. Others need to check it many times a day. Checking blood sugar helps you stay on track with your nutrition and activity plans. Usual times to test your blood sugar are before meals and at bedtime. Your provider may ask you to check your blood sugar 2 hours after a meal or even sometimes in the middle of the night. Ask your provider when you should check your blood sugar. Other times to check your blood sugar may be: After you eat out, especially if you have eaten foods you don't normally eat If you feel sick Before or after you exercise If you have been under a lot of stress If you eat too much or skip meals or snacks If you are taking new medicines, took too much insulin or diabetes medicine by mistake, or took your medicine at the wrong time If your blood sugar has been higher or lower than normal If you are drinking alcohol You can buy a testing kit from a pharmacy without a prescription. Your provider can help you choose the right kit, set up the meter, and teach you how to use it. Most kits have: Test strips Small needles (lancets) that fit into a spring-loaded plastic device A logbook for recording your numbers that can be downloaded and viewed at home or at your provider's office To do the test, prick your finger with the needle and place a drop of blood on a special strip. This strip measures how much glucose is in your blood. Some monitors use blood from areas of the body other than the fingers, reducing discomfort. The meter shows your blood sugar results as a number on a digital display. If your vision is poo Continue reading >>
How Often Should Diabetics Use A Glucometer To Monitor Blood Glucose Levels?
If you are a diabetic, or have a family member who suffers from the disease, you must know the pain that goes with constantly checking one’s blood glucose levels. Although, keeping a tab on one’s glucose levels at regular intervals is important, there is something as too much checking. We asked Dr Rajiv Kovil, leading diabetologist, about how often and why one should check their blood glucose levels. Checking one’s blood glucose using a glucometer is known as SMBG (Self Monitoring of Blood Glucose). This is where a person monitors their blood glucose level using a portable device known as a glucometer in the comfort of their home. This machine takes a small drop of blood, collected on glucometer strip (a strip of paper specially designed for the device) and checks it for the amount of glucose in the person’s body. Dr Kovil says, ‘SMBG (Self Monitoring of Blood Glucose) is tool to find out a patient’s glycaemic variability. It should be used to guide patient and his/her doctor.’ How often should one check their glucose level? The frequency of the checks vary, depending on the type of diabetes one suffers from. Type 2 diabetics According to Dr Kovil, ‘A type 2 diabetic should measure his/her glucose levels once before a meal and once two hours after a meal. This should be done on different days at different times, also known as scattered checks’. These checks help your doctor know how well your body is responding to a particular medication, and if any changes in the dosages are required. It also gives him/her a fair idea about how your body is coping with the disease and if you are at any further risk from associated conditions like heart disease, eye disorders and vascular disorders. (Read: Diabetes is not a blood sugar problem, it is a vascular disorde Continue reading >>
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How Often Should You Get Your Blood Sugar Checked?
Image: Thinkstock Get your blood sugar checked annually if you have prediabetes—higher-than-normal blood sugar levels. Your risk factors determine whether you should be screened annually or every three years. Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School. Continue reading >>
Smart Testing Can Help You Control Your Diabetes
Testing your blood sugar is a basic part of life for most people with diabetes. The numbers tell you and your health care team if your condition is under control. Still, for such a simple concept, it raises many questions. How often should you test? What time of the day should you do it? You and your doctors will work closely together to find the answers that will keep you healthy. Setting Goals You’re shooting for an A1c level of 7% or less, which equals an average glucose (or eAG) of 154 mg/dL. Your doctor will give you an A1c test every 3-6 months. When you should test and what goals you’re aiming for depend on: Your personal preferences How long you’ve had diabetes Your age Other health problems you may have Medicines you’re taking If you have low blood sugar (your doctor may call this hypoglycemia) without warning signs Testing Times Once you and your doctors figure out where your levels should be and the best way to get there (through diet, exercise, or medications), you’ll decide when you should check your blood sugar. A fasting blood glucose level (FBG), taken in the morning before you eat or drink anything, is the go-to test for many. Another test at bedtime is common. But what about other times? Testing 1 to 2 hours after breakfast or before lunch gives a more complete picture of what’s going on, says Pamela Allweiss, MD, of the CDC. The American Diabetes Association says testing right after a meal can provide your doctor with good info when your pre-meal blood-sugar levels are OK but you haven’t reached your A1c goal. “Monitoring is really important, particularly if you take insulin or medicine that can cause hypoglycemia,” says David Goldstein MD, professor at the University of Missouri School of Medicine. And measuring both before and afte Continue reading >>
When Should I Check My Blood Sugar Levels?
Reader question: I think my blood sugar is all over the place and I haven't really been testing it regularly. I need to get better control I think but when should I check my blood sugar levels because I'm not really sure how often or when is best? First, let's just recap normal blood sugar levels so you know what to aim for. You want to aim for 70-110 (4-6.1) fasting or before meals, and under 140 (7.8) after meals. Here are the charts and if you need a downloadble chart of your own, Click Here for our free downloadable chart. How Often To Test? Most diabetes organizations recommend you test at least 3-4 times per day. But it's even better if you test more, at least until you get good control of blood sugar levels. If your blood sugar is currently uncontrolled or you want to gain better control here is a testing strategy to get you moving in the right direction. This strategy was adpated from author Jenny Ruhls – Lower Your Blood Sugar book, and it's a method that has been used effectively by many people to successfully get better control of blood sugar…meaning THIS WORKS! So give it a try yourself and let us know how you go 1. Write down everything you eat in a food diary or log it in an app like MyFitnessPal 2. Test your blood sugar level upon waking, then test 1 hour after meals, and 2 hours after meals as well. Write down all your readings and make a note of when your highest reading comes and how long it takes for you to return to normal. This will differ for everyone so you want to know when your own individual high level comes. It's not typical to test 1 hour after meals but testing 1 hour after eating will give you the most accurate portrayal of how a food affects you. Although it is normal to ‘spike', not spiking is a goal for diabetics, or at least minim Continue reading >>
How Often Do I Need To Test My Blood Glucose?
Tweet How often to test blood sugar levels is a common question particularly amongst people that are newly diagnosed with diabetes or that have moved onto a new treatment regimen. The frequency at which you should test your blood will be dependent upon the treatment regimen you are on as well as individual circumstances. Blood glucose testing can help you to identify any hypos and hypers and provide information on how to keep your diabetes under control It is sadly quite common for some people's healthcare team to suggest people with diabetes to test less often or not test at all even when their patients are keen. Should I test my blood glucose levels? If you are on medication that puts you at risk of hypos, you should test your blood glucose levels. Medications that can cause hypos include: Insulin (all types of insulin) Sulphonylureas (glibenclamide, gliclazide, glipizide, glimepiride, tolbutamide) Prandial glucose regulators (repaglinide, nateglinide) This means that all people with type 1 diabetes need to regularly test their blood glucose levels. If you have another type of diabetes and are not on any of the medication above, there is less necessity to test your blood sugar but there is still plenty of benefit to be had in testing your blood sugar. Read about the benefits of blood glucose testing It has previously been reported by research that some people may find blood glucose testing distressing. This is more likely to be the case when people have not received education about how to interpret and act upon the results. When people know how to interpret the results, blood glucose testing is usually regarded as a substantial benefit. Blood glucose testing for type 1 diabetes The 2015 NICE guidelines recommend that people with type 1 diabetes test their blood glucos Continue reading >>
What Are The Ideal Levels Of Blood Sugar?
A blood sugar or blood glucose chart identifies ideal blood sugar levels throughout the day, including before and after meals. Doctors use blood sugar charts to set target goals and monitor diabetes treatment plans. Blood sugar charts also help those with diabetes assess and self-monitor blood sugar test results. What is a blood sugar chart? Blood sugar charts act as a reference guide for blood sugar test results. As such, blood sugar charts are important tools for diabetes management. Most diabetes treatment plans involve keeping blood sugar levels as close to normal or target goals as possible. This requires frequent at-home and doctor-ordered testing, along with an understanding of how results compare to target levels. To help interpret and assess blood sugar results, the charts outline normal and abnormal blood sugar levels for those with and without diabetes. In the United States, blood sugar charts typically report sugar levels in milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL). In the United Kingdom and many other countries, blood sugar is reported in millimoles per liter (mmol/L). A1C blood sugar recommendations are frequently included in blood sugar charts. A1C results are often described as both a percentage and an average blood sugar level in mg/dL. An A1C test measures the average sugar levels over a 3-month period, which gives a wider insight into a person's overall management of their blood sugar levels. Blood sugar chart guidelines Appropriate blood sugar levels vary throughout the day and from person to person. Blood sugars are often lowest before breakfast and in the lead up to meals. Blood sugars are often highest in the hours following meals. People with diabetes will often have higher blood sugar targets or acceptable ranges than those without the condition. These Continue reading >>
What Is Levemir® (insulin Detemir [rdna Origin] Injection)?
Do not share your Levemir® FlexTouch® with other people, even if the needle has been changed. You may give other people a serious infection, or get a serious infection from them. Who should not take Levemir®? Do not take Levemir® if: you have an allergy to Levemir® or any of the ingredients in Levemir®. How should I take Levemir®? Read the Instructions for Use and take exactly as directed. Know the type and strength of your insulin. Do not change your insulin type unless your health care provider tells you to. Check your blood sugar levels. Ask your health care provider what your blood sugar levels should be and when you should check them. Do not reuse or share your needles with other people. You may give other people a serious infection, or get a serious infection from them. Never inject Levemir® into a vein or muscle. Do not share your Levemir FlexTouch with other people, even if the needle has been changed. You may give other people a serious infection, or get a serious infection from them. Who should not take Levemir®? Do not take Levemir® if: you have an allergy to Levemir® or any of the ingredients in Levemir®. Before taking Levemir®, tell your health care provider about all your medical conditions including, if you are: pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding. taking new prescription or over-the-counter medicines, including supplements. Talk to your health care provider about how to manage low blood sugar. How should I take Levemir®? Read the Instructions for Use and take exactly as directed. Know the type and strength of your insulin. Do not change your insulin type unless your health care provider tells you to. Check your blood sugar levels. Ask your health care provider what your blood sugar levels should be and when you should ch Continue reading >>