Sleep and Blood Sugar: How Sleep Impacts Your Blood Sugar Levels

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Sleep plays a key role in your body maintaining a healthy blood sugar level. Diabetes and obesity are affected by your body’s blood sugar levels. Since physical health and sleep are majorly connected, it’s no surprise that your blood sugar levels are affected by your sleep patterns. 

This guide will discuss the consequences of lack of sleep and blood sugar levels on your body. Learn how to sleep better as you manage your symptoms. 

Can Sleep Lower or Raise My Glucose Levels?

It’s true. Sleep can both lower and raise your glucose levels. 

Your body goes through the circadian rhythm each day, and the cycle lasts for 24 hours. The circadian rhythm includes the following types of changes:

  • Behavioral 
  • Mental 
  • Physical 

Even if you’re not asleep, your blood sugar levels will rise every evening. It’s part of your body’s natural circadian rhythm cycle. However, sleep and blood sugar level fluctuations are normal events and not an area to be concerned about for most people. 

Restorative sleep can sometimes lower a person’s unhealthy blood sugar levels. It does this by promoting healthy systems in your body. 

Additionally, a decreased amount of sleep can increase blood sugar levels. Even sleep deprivation for one night can increase your body’s insulin resistance. As a result, your blood sugar levels will rise with it. 

A lack of sleep, or insomnia, has been connected to diabetes. Some of the following factors can influence the relationship between blood sugar levels and sleep:

  • The individual’s age
  • When they sleep 
  • What sleep stages do they experience 
  • How much time do they spend sleeping
  • Their eating habits

Does Low Blood Sugar Result in Sleep Issues?

Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, can result in sleep problems. Nocturnal hypoglycemia only occurs at night. 

Low blood sugar, while a person is sleeping, can result in the following side effects:

  • Yelling or crying during sleep
  • Profusely sweating
  • Nightmares
  • Feeling confused or irritable when you wake up

Do Sleep Disorders Affect Your Blood Sugar?

Since blood sugar levels and lack of sleep are connected, it only makes sense that your blood sugar levels will rise when you don’t sleep well. Some of the following sleep disorders have been connected to a person’s sugar levels:

  • Obstructive Sleep Apnea: Impaired tolerance of glucose 
  • Sleep Disordered Breathing: Higher levels of glucose
  • Severe Breathing Issues: Higher levels of blood sugar

Poor or lack of sleep is sometimes associated with a diabetic person’s ability to control their glucose levels. 

Common Sleep Disorders That Are Connected to Diabetes 

Tossing and turning during the night is common for those who suffer from diabetes. It can result from different diabetes symptoms, but it also might indicate there’s another health problem. 

Restless Leg Syndrom (RLS)

The constant urge to move around your legs is known as restless leg syndrome. It occurs mostly in the evening hours. It can make it difficult for people to stay or fall asleep. 

Some RLS risk factors include:

  • Kidney problems
  • High blood sugar levels
  • Thyroid disorders 

A person might also suffer from RLS if they have an iron deficiency. 

Sleep Apnea

People who struggle to maintain healthy blood sugar levels also commonly suffer from sleep apnea. This event occurs when a person repeatedly starts and stops breathing while sleeping. 

Some side effects of sleep apnea include snoring or feeling sleepy throughout the day. People who are obese or have a family history of sleep disorders are more at risk for it. 

To help relieve your symptoms, you can incorporate a healthy diet and exercise routine into your life. You can also speak with your doctor about getting a special mask that you can wear while sleeping. The masks increase the amount of air pressure in your throat, allowing you to breathe better. 

Insomnia 

Those who have problems falling and then staying asleep suffer from insomnia. High-stress levels coupled with high glucose levels put you more at risk for insomnia. 

If you believe you have insomnia, look at why you might have problems falling asleep. Evaluate if you’re having family issues or work in a high-stress job. You can also speak with a medical professional to help figure out what’s causing your issues. 

Ways to Manage Your Blood Sugar Levels While You Sleep

Learning good sleep habits are essential given the close connection between sleep and diabetes. These habits include both day and nighttime activities. 

These habits include:

  • Maintaining a consistent sleep scheduling 
  • Healthy eating habits that keep your blood sugar levels in control 
  • Regular exercise 
  • Keeping your bedroom dark, quiet, and cool 
  • Avoiding nicotine and caffeine before bedtime

Before you go to bed, remove all distractions from your room. This includes your cell phone, especially if you’re prone to checking it throughout the night. 

If you need an alarm to wake up, purchase an alarm clock. This will empower you to keep your cell phone in another room while you sleep. 

You can also create white noise to play while you sleep. Birds chirping or the sound of the garbage truck driving by can disrupt your sleep patterns. Consider turning on a fan to reduce distracting noises. 

Depending upon your situation, your healthcare provider might recommend certain sleep aids. They can also give you recommendations on how to sleep better. 

Educate Yourself on the Connection Between Sleep and Blood Sugar

It’s important to know the connection between sleep and blood sugar levels. Your body’s blood sugar naturally fluctuates throughout the day and night, but you want that change to be healthy. Check out our wide range of products used as dietary supplements to help manage your blood sugar levels.

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