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Low Blood Sugar Snacks Bedtime

How To Prevent Low Blood Sugar Over Night

How To Prevent Low Blood Sugar Over Night

Low blood sugar during sleep can offer a variety of problems for people. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, symptoms include night sweats, nightmares and waking tired and irritable. Prevention of overnight low blood sugar includes eating a snack before bed to stabilize blood sugar for six to eight hours. Learn more about what you can do to avoid nighttime blood sugar crashes. Causes Overnight hypoglycemic reactions can be caused by a spike and then drop following a sugary meal ingested at dinnertime, excess insulin taken at bedtime, excessive exercising, alcohol intake or a missed bedtime snack. Another factor can be attributed to the release of growth hormones throughout the night that may interfere with insulin. It is important for diabetics to eat consistently throughout the day. By eating snacks between meals, you prevent blood sugar fluctuations that will cause low blood sugar at night. Even missing one meal in the beginning of the day can cause low overnight blood sugar. Meal Schedules Eat a healthy breakfast when you wake. The best option is to make sure your blood sugar rises slowly. Choose low-glycemic foods that will not raise blood sugar quickly and will get your metabolism moving. Meal ideas include whole grain bread, oatmeal or eggs. Three hours after you eat breakfast, have a snack that can consist of nuts, whole-grain crackers with peanut butter, raw vegetables with hummus, a small cup of vegetable soup or low-fat string cheese. Lunch could consist of a salad with chicken, a black bean burrito, a whole grain turkey wrap, tofu and brown rice or goat cheese and hummus sandwiched on wheat bread. Three hours after lunch, you should have another snack. Try any of the mid-morning snacks, or an apple with low-fat c Continue reading >>

How Can I Fight Morning Highs?

How Can I Fight Morning Highs?

My morning blood glucose is quite elevated (190 to 260 mg/dl). Is there a certain time before bed that I should eat to help lower my blood sugar? Are there certain foods I should eat after dinner? Continue reading >>

Does Everyone With Diabetes Need A Bedtime Snack?

Does Everyone With Diabetes Need A Bedtime Snack?

Are you one of those people who get a craving for ice cream right around 10 pm? Or maybe you like to munch on potato chips when watching late night TV? Snacking before bedtime can be a guilty pleasure, but people with diabetes are often told to include it in their meal plans. Is this something that every person with diabetes really needs? Diabetes Meal Planning has Changed In the past, people who were diagnosed with diabetes were often given vague directions about meal planning, with little attention paid to their personal goals. Most people were told to have 3 meals and 3 snacks per day, without much guidance on exactly what and when to eat. Times have changed, and thankfully so have diabetes meal-planning guidelines. Nowadays, meal plans are much more flexible and individualized. Similarly, the decision to include a bedtime snack in your diet depends on many things – blood sugar levels, weight management goals, and your eating schedule. Blood sugar levels at bedtime are particularly important to look at. A study in the Journal of Diabetes Care recommends having a snack if your blood sugar is less than 126 mg/dl, but to avoid snacking if your blood sugar is higher than 180 mg/dl. Why is Snacking Important for People with Diabetes? Some people with diabetes may develop what’s called nocturnal hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) while they sleep. If your blood sugar at bedtime is low – i.e., less than 126 mg/dl ? then a snack can help to prevent this nighttime dip. But be wise about your snack selection: this isn’t a green light to eat just anything. It’s important to choose a snack that is low in calories, as well as a healthy source of carbohydrate and protein. Best Bedtime Snacks A general rule of thumb is 15-30 grams of carbs and about an ounce (7 grams) of prot Continue reading >>

Do You Bolt Awake At 3 A.m.? Low Blood Sugar Symptoms May Be To Blame

Do You Bolt Awake At 3 A.m.? Low Blood Sugar Symptoms May Be To Blame

You’re exhausted and you need your eight hours of sleep, but you suddenly bolt awake around 3 or 4 a.m., energy coursing through your veins and mind churning anxiously. What gives? Waking up in the middle of the night is simply one of many low blood sugar symptoms. Why Symptoms of Low Blood Sugar Can Cause You to Be Awake at 3 a.m. Sleeping through the night represents a long period without food when blood sugar can drop too low. This is bad news for the brain, which depends on glucose for energy. The brain is highly active at night, transforming short-term memory into long-term memory,[1] and carrying out repair and regeneration.[2] In response, the adrenal glands, two walnut-shaped glands that sit atop the kidneys, release stress hormones. These stress hormones raise blood sugar back to a safe level. Unfortunately, stress hormones also raise, well, stress. Hence the anxious awakening during night’s darkest hours. Eating at 3 a.m. Can Help You Fall Back to Sleep A quick fix for this and other low blood sugar symptoms (below) can be as simple as eating a small amount of protein—with perhaps some fat thrown in—when you wake up too early. This could a spoonful of nut butter, a few pieces of meat, or a hard-boiled egg. Some find this stabilizes blood sugar levels enough so they fall back asleep. Do not, however, eat something starchy at this time, such as bread or cereal, as it will spike blood sugar levels, causing them to drop too low again. Daytime Tips to Avoid Waking Up at 3 a.m. Every Night Although a quick snack may help you fall back asleep, it’s better to prevent waking up in the first place. If you are waking up regularly at 3 a.m., chances are you suffer from low blood sugar symptoms. Signs of low blood sugar include: Sugar cravings Irritability, light Continue reading >>

The Best Snacks For Reactive Hypoglycemia

The Best Snacks For Reactive Hypoglycemia

It comes on suddenly and you feel nauseous, faint and maybe even dizzy. The only cure is to eat something fast because you’re also feeling extremely hungry even though your last meal was only a few hours ago. Reactive hypoglycemia, whether your blood sugars are dropping below normal or not, can be scary. Eating regularly and including healthy snacks may help prevent the dip in blood sugar and unsettling symptoms. Reactive hypoglycemia must be diagnosed by a doctor, so if you think you’re having episodes of low blood sugar, consult with your doctor to get the right diagnosis and treatment. A Little About Reactive Hypoglycemia Reactive hypoglycemia, also known as postprandial hypoglycemia, is a condition characterized by low blood sugars that occur within four hours after eating a meal. It affects people with and without diabetes, people who are overweight and those who’ve had gastric bypass surgery. Doctors aren’t certain what causes the sudden drop in blood sugar, but it’s thought to be an excessive secretion of insulin, the hormone that carries glucose from the blood to the cells. Symptoms of reactive hypoglycemia vary and may include nausea, vomiting, fatigue, anxiety, irritability, increased hunger and headaches. While reactive hypoglycemia can cause low blood sugar, some people experience the symptoms of the condition without their blood sugar dropping below normal. How to Snack With Reactive Hypoglycemia The only treatment for reactive hypoglycemia is diet. But you don’t need to eat special foods or special snacks. The same healthy foods that are recommended for everyone are good for people with reactive hypoglycemia. That means meals and snacks of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, healthy proteins and healthy fats. However, to gain prevent the drastic Continue reading >>

Diabetic Bedtime Snack Ideas

Diabetic Bedtime Snack Ideas

Low blood sugar during the night can be a concern for people with diabetes, especially those on insulin. A 2003 study published in "Diabetes Care" investigated the impact of snack composition on nightly blood sugars in adults with Type 1 diabetes. The researchers concluded that bedtime snacks consisting of a carbohydrate and protein worked best in preventing low blood sugars when the bedtime blood sugar was less than 126 mg/dL. Video of the Day Most bedtime snacks contain about 15 to 30 g of carbohydrate, or two servings of a carbohydrate-containing food, and a serving of protein. It is not quite understood why protein helps to prevent nightly hypoglycemia, according to the authors of the "Diabetes Care" study, but it is believed to be related to the way protein is metabolized. Cereal and milk provides both carbohydrate and protein. A good bedtime snack consists of 3/4-cup serving of whole-grain cereal and 1-cup of low-fat milk. During cold months, you can try 1/2 cup of hot cereal with 2 tbsp. of raisins and 1 cup of skim milk as a cereal bedtime snack. Crackers and Peanut Butter Crackers provide the carbohydrate and peanut butter provides the protein. Spread 12 whole-grain crackers with 3 tsp. of peanut butter or you can also try six whole-grain crackers with 3 tsp. of peanut butter and 1-cup of skim milk. Each of these snacks contain 30 g of carbohydrate. Sandwiches also make a good bedtime snack for diabetics. Choose lean sources of meat to decrease your intake of saturated fat. Too much saturated fat in the diet increases blood cholesterol levels, another risk factor for heart disease. Bedtime sandwich ideas include two slices of whole wheat bread with 1 oz. of turkey, 1 oz. of lean ham, 1oz. of low-fat cheese or 1 oz. of canned tuna packed in water mixed with 1 ts Continue reading >>

How To Snack Smart At Bedtime

How To Snack Smart At Bedtime

Im hungry, I said to my husband. He sighed then asked what I needed to eat. We had just crawled into bed when my stomach grumbled. He was used to this because it happens to me often. I need to learn to be proactive about my bedtime snacking, though, and eat something before we go to bed. Late-night snacking has pros and cons for people with diabetes, depending on the type of diabetes and the type of snack. Well look at who should be having a snack and what kinds of snacks are good for different types of problems. How You Can Tell What Kind of Bedtime Snack Is Okay? So, how can you tell if its okay to snack at all and, if so, how many carbs that snack should have? One of your clues is your fasting morning blood glucose levels. See what happens to your numbers the morning after snacking and on mornings after you dont snack. How do they compare? Unfortunately, its not often that simple. Your fasting blood glucose reading is only the start. To get a better sense of your overall patterns, try testing before you go to bed at night, and again around 3 a.m., in addition to your morning test. Do this for several days in a row and you will begin to see your bodys typical nighttime blood sugar cycle. Armed with this information, you may want to consult with your doctor, nutritionist, and/or diabetes educator about how best to work with whatever pattern you discovered. However, we give some tips and ideas below to help you figure out what kinds of snacks you can indulge in, depending on the particular diabetes challenge youre dealing with. Bedtime Snacks Can Add Weight, Not Good for Diabetics Snacking at night can lead to weight gain because we dont always choose carefully when we have the post-dinner munchies. And we sit in front of the television or hang out with friends and don Continue reading >>

Nighttime Hypoglycemia

Nighttime Hypoglycemia

An episode of low blood glucose occurring at night. During sleep, the body’s energy needs fall, and consequently the liver pumps out less glucose, the body’s fuel. In people without diabetes, the pancreas responds to the liver’s lowered glucose production by secreting less insulin, and in this way, a balance is maintained. In people with Type 1 diabetes, this balance is harder to maintain since the pancreas no longer secretes insulin. Instead, a person must inject just enough insulin — but not too much — before bedtime to maintain a normal nighttime blood glucose level. A number of things can throw off the balance. Injecting too much insulin or injecting the right amount at the wrong time can lower blood glucose more than desired. Eating less food than usual during the day or eating the evening meal or snack at a different time than usual can affect blood sugar during the night. Exercising more than usual during the day can also cause low blood glucose at night. Many of the classic signs of low blood glucose — including shakiness, light-headedness, dizziness, confusion, rapid heartbeat, irritability, and extreme hunger — can occur during the day or at night. Nighttime hypoglycemia has also been known to cause night sweats, headache, restless sleep, and nightmares. Nighttime hypoglycemia is a common problem among people who control their blood glucose intensively through multiple injections of insulin during the day. In the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial, a study that evaluated the benefits and risks of “tight” blood glucose control, people on tight control regimens were three times more likely to have an episode of hypoglycemia than those on standard regimens, and more than half of these episodes occurred while people were sleeping. Although Continue reading >>

6 Ways To Prevent Low Blood Sugar At Night

6 Ways To Prevent Low Blood Sugar At Night

Nighttime dips in blood sugar levels are common among people with diabetes. Authors of a study published in June 2013 in Quality of Life Research noted that people with diabetes — type 1 or type 2 — experience low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) during sleep more frequently than many doctors realize. Nighttime hypoglycemia can be caused by a number of different factors, from exercising too close to bedtime to drinking alcohol in the evening. If untreated, low overnight blood sugar levels can lead to headaches and loss of sleep — and in extreme cases, seizures or even death. The good news is that preventing low blood sugar while you sleep can be achieved with a few simple steps: 1. Check Your Blood Sugar Before Bed “For everybody with type 1 or type 2 diabetes, it’s absolutely critical that they check their blood sugar before going to bed to make sure they’re not going to have an episode of low blood sugar during the night,” says Helena W. Rodbard, MD, medical director of Endocrine and Metabolic Consultants, a private practice in Rockville, Maryland, and past president of the American College of Endocrinology. If your blood sugar levels are low at bedtime, eat a healthy snack before going to sleep. The size of the snack should be in proportion to the dip in blood sugar. For instance, a small drop in blood sugar requires only a small snack. If you use an insulin pump, consider temporarily reducing the active dose of insulin. 2. Know the Signs of Low Overnight Blood Sugar Symptoms of hypoglycemia usually develop when blood sugar levels drop below 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl). They include shakiness, sweating, confusion, erratic behavior, headache, and lightheadedness. With nighttime hypoglycemia, you may wake up with these symptoms or with a higher blood su Continue reading >>

Nighttime Snack- A Blood Sugar Must

Nighttime Snack- A Blood Sugar Must

Over and over again, I have heard people say “Don’t eat after 8pm, its bad for your health” with no evidence to back up this supposed claim. Your body will not magically turn all calories into fat if you eat a piece of fruit, a cracker or even your dinner the second the clock strikes 8pm, but for those with type 2 diabetes, not eating a nighttime snack may actually be contributing to high blood sugars in the morning. Medications for diabetes-especially insulin – work by helping glucose enter the cells and lowering blood sugar values. This medication is adjusted specifically for each individual in order to make sure that blood sugars don’t stay too high or drop too low. However, insulin may act in your body for an extended period of time, depending on the type. During the day, we are constantly providing our body with sources of carbohydrates either by eating three distinct meals every several hours or grazing throughout the day. For those who choose not to eat anything between dinner and breakfast the next morning, this provides a window of potentially twelve hours with no carbohydrates entering the bloodstream. As mentioned before, insulin often works over an extended period of time, and may still be helping lower your blood sugar at night when you are sleeping and will cause a low blood sugar at night. You might be wondering how this will lead to high blood sugars in the morning right about now. Our bodies have a unique system of storing some extra glucose in our liver, and these stores are called glycogen. When we eat foods that are turned into glucose as they are digested, a limited amount of this glucose is stored in the liver for emergency purposes in case we need a boost of energy to run away from a bear that is about to eat us. For the average American Continue reading >>

A1c Tip: What You Eat…before Bedtime!

A1c Tip: What You Eat…before Bedtime!

Unfortunately, the time of day when many people (whether or not they have diabetes) want to veg-out and eat some kind of junk food is at the very end of the day. There’s no mystery: it’s comforting to sit down with something delicious and perhaps less-than-ideal for a person with diabetes after long day at work. As the days get shorter and winter approaches, that urge can only grow stronger. But how is it affecting your overnight blood sugars and your blood sugar the next morning? Personally, I’ve found that when I have a really indulgent treat, like a slice of gluten-free blueberry pie, for example–something really high in both carbs and fat–that even if I manage my blood sugar tightly before bed and am “in-range” throughout the night, I actually see my blood sugar rise between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. the next morning! Normally, my blood sugar is extremely steady during the morning hours, but what I ate before bed can impact my blood sugar nearly 12 hours later. What are you eating before bed? How is it affecting your blood sugars not only through the night but the next day, too? What You Eat Before Bed: Things to Consider Here are just a few of things to consider if you think this particular time of day may be impacting your blood sugar levels and thus impacting your A1C goals, too: One of the biggest reasons people tend to over-eat at night is because they didn’t get enough food in during the day. Take a closer look at what you’re eating throughout the day: hardly anything? Are you starving by the time you get home? If you are struggling with your blood sugar throughout the night, or you’re simply waking up at 5 a.m. to find that you’ve been well above 200 mg/dL all night long, think about what proportion of the day that means your blood sugar was hig Continue reading >>

Sleep Safe & Sound: Avoiding Overnight Low Blood Sugars

Sleep Safe & Sound: Avoiding Overnight Low Blood Sugars

An Essential Blood Glucose Reading Sleep should be restful, yet for people with diabetes it can be stressful. Many factors can affect glucose levels when you sleep. For starters: your body's varied need for insulin, how much glucose the liver produces, what and when you eat before bed, and how much and what type of exercise you've done during the day and near bedtime. It's essential to check blood glucose an hour or so before bedtime. "This is the most important reading of the day," says Gary Scheiner, M.S., CDE, owner and director of Integrated Diabetes Services in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania. "If you take insulin and you check at least three or four hours after dinner, you'll learn how well your dinnertime insulin covered the rise of your blood glucose from dinner." If you eat late, this bedtime reading may really reflect your after-meal level. If your bedtime glucose reading is low, treat the low. If you use insulin as part of your regular blood glucose control, and your blood sugar is high three or more hours after your dinner, you may need to take a few units of rapid-acting insulin. {C} How to Prevent Going Low In addition to monitoring glucose levels right before bedtime, other steps can prevent low blood glucose while you sleep. Snack Smart: If you typically eat a snack before bed to prevent hypoglycemia and keep your blood glucose on an even keel, experiment with different types of snacks. Get a feel for which ones help your blood glucose readings stay within target goals during sleep. Spencer Bond, an active teen PWD type 1, usually eats peanut butter with apple slices or crackers. Because peanut butter contains both protein and fat, it's absorbed and metabolized more slowly than carbohydrate, so it helps to keep his blood glucose stable overnight. "Sometimes I ha Continue reading >>

How To Prevent Low Blood Sugar At Night

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 (hypoglycemia) 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.[1] Continue reading >>

What Is A Good Evening Snack?

What Is A Good Evening Snack?

My mom, who has diabetes, likes having her tea and a snack before bedtime. Is eating a slice of American or cheddar cheese good for her? Continue reading >>

Tips For Managing Nighttime Hypoglycemia

Tips For Managing Nighttime Hypoglycemia

Many people with diabetes (both type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes) experience hypoglycemia while sleeping—this is called a nighttime low (as in low blood glucose level). Many factors contribute to nighttime hypoglycemia. Being familiar with the causes will help you understand the signs and take steps to prevent nighttime lows. Episodes of hypoglycemia can be uncomfortable and frightening. Severe hypoglycemia can cause seizures and be life-threatening so it's important to recognize the problem and respond appropriately.Read on for tips to help you prevent hypoglycemia. Recognizing the Signs Shakiness and irregular heartbeats can be a sign of approaching hypoglycemia. Symptoms can develop when blood sugar drops below 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl). Eating dinner much later than you normally do, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol or having an unusually active day can contribute to the condition. Sometimes exercising too close to bedtime can trigger it, too. Experts say it's best to avoid exercising within two hours of bedtime. If you frequently wake up with symptoms of hypoglycemia, such as a headache, nausea, restlessness, dry mouth, light-headedness, or sweating, start testing your blood glucose level as soon as you get out of bed. If it's low in the morning on a regular basis —below 70 mg/dL— you and your doctor should take steps to stop the nighttime hypoglycemia.Not everyone experiences symptoms so it's possible (and potentially dangerous) to ignore the problem. To avoid what is known as "hypoglycemia unawareness" routine checking of levels at night and in the morning is vital. Strategies for Preventing Nighttime Hypoglycemia To reduce the risk of nighttime hypoglycemia, you need to come up with a way of ensuring you have more glucose in your body duri Continue reading >>

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