Why Your Blood Sugar Level May Be Low
If blood sugar drops below 70 mg/dL, it is below normal levels. This can be caused by a variety of factors, such as:
- Not eating enough or missing a meal or snack
- Reducing the amount of carbohydrates you normally eat
- Alcohol consumption especially if youre drinking on an empty stomach
- Taking too much insulin or oral diabetes medication based on carbohydrates or activity levels
- Increased physical activity
- Side effects from medications
If you have diabetes, keep your blood glucose meter and sources of fast-acting glucose close by in case your blood sugar drops. This is especially important for people with hypoglycemia unawareness, which is a condition that causes symptoms of low blood sugar to go unnoticed.
Eating balanced meals and snacks at regular times throughout the day is a big part of maintaining normal blood glucose levels. Check out our article on meal planning for diabetes to better understand the three macronutrients where calories come from and which have the biggest effect on blood sugar.
Everyone will respond differently to certain factors, which is why its important to have individualized target glucose levels. To help you reach your target blood glucose goals, work with your healthcare provider to discuss modifications to your diet, physical activity, or medications, and alert them of other factors like a recent illness or stressful event.
Normal Blood Sugar Levels For Older Adults
Letâs spend a minute discussing the average levels for adults over the age of 65. Those who do not have diabetes may be held to the same glucose range as healthy younger adults, keeping glucose between 70-140 mg/dL during the day.
For older adults with diabetes and comorbidities or severe diabetes symptoms like neuropathy, kidney damage, or retinopathy, the recommended glucose threshold, and A1C values may be more lenient. It will all depend on how much damage is done to the pancreas.
What Is Blood Sugar
When you eat, the carbohydrate in your food is broken down into a usable form of energy called glucose. Glucose also known as sugar enters the bloodstream and a hormone called insulin helps move it into our cells.
This process lowers the amount of glucose in the bloodstream. When this process works efficiently, your muscles and organs have the fuel they need without there being too much glucose remaining in the blood.
Recommended Reading: Type 1 Diabetes And Eating Disorders
Blood Sugar Levels Chart By Age 60 Female
There are no specific blood sugar levels cut off for different age groups. It is the same across the age spectrum for those who do not have diabetes. As per the recommendations by ADA, here is a look at the target blood sugar levels for females who do not have diabetes:
- Fasting or before any meal has been taken: 70 to < 100 mg/dL
- 0 to 2 hours after the last meal was taken: < 140 mg/dL
Do keep in mind that your doctor will give you the best suggestion about your target healthy blood glucose levels. Also, please note that this will depend on the food youve eaten.
So, its best to take readings for a few days before you approach your doctor for abnormal blood sugar levels.
Random Blood Sugar Test
This measures your blood sugar at the time youre tested. You can take this test at any time and dont need to fast first. A blood sugar level of 200 mg/dL or higher indicates you have diabetes.
|140 mg/dL or below||N/A|
*Results for gestational diabetes can differ. Ask your health care provider what your results mean if youre being tested for gestational diabetes.Source: American Diabetes Association
If your doctor thinks you have type 1 diabetes, your blood may also tested for autoantibodies that are often present in type 1 diabetes but not in type 2 diabetes. You may have your urine tested for ketones , which also indicate type 1 diabetes instead of type 2 diabetes.
How To Reduce Blood Sugar
You can take steps to reach your blood sugar goals as soon as you find out that it is high. This is how to reduce blood sugar if you have a single high reading that may be dangerous:
- Ask your doctor what to do if you missed a dose of insulin or another diabetes medication
- Ask your doctor if your medication types and doses are still appropriate for you
- Drink water to dilute the sugar
- Exercise for 15 minutes
- Eat a small protein snack, such as a hard-boiled egg, 1/2 ounce of peanuts or pistachios or other nuts, 1/2 cup of beans, or 1/2 cup of plain yogurt or cottage cheese
If you have chronically high blood sugar in prediabetes or diabetes, you can follow this treatment plan:
- Exercise regularly, assuming your doctor approves it
- Lose weight if you are overweight or obese
- Eat a higher proportion of vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, healthy fats, and fruit
- Limit sugary foods and beverages, fried foods, refined starches, and processed and fatty red meats
- Beware of starchy vegetables such as sweet potatoes, which can spike your blood sugar. Check out our guide of which veggies to avoid!
How Do I Prepare For A Blood Glucose Test
If your healthcare provider has ordered a fasting blood glucose test, youll need to not eat or drink anything except water for eight to 10 hours before the test.
If your blood glucose test is part of a basic or comprehensive metabolic panel, you may also need to fast for several hours before your blood draw. In any case, your healthcare provider will let you know if you need to follow any special instructions.
Read Also: Blood Sugar Going Up And Down Rapidly
Low Blood Sugar Chart And Action Plan
Low blood sugar is also called hypoglycemia. The numbers below represent values in the hypoglycemic range and require action to bring blood sugar levels up into a normal range.
|Alert Level and Treatment Plan|
|50 mg/dL or under||Red Flag: Blood sugar is critically low and requires immediate treatment.
If a person is unable to speak and/or is not alert, treat with glucagon via injection or nasal spray. Call emergency medical response if necessary. Do not place food or drink into the mouth.
If a person is alert and able to speak clearly, treat with 15 grams of rapid-acting carbohydrate such as glucose gel, 4 oz regular soda, or fruit juice. Re-test blood sugar in 15 minutes and repeat as needed to bring blood sugar within range.
|51-70 mg/dL||Red Flag: Blood sugar is below normal levels and requires immediate treatment.
Treat with 15 grams of rapid-acting carbohydrate and re-test in 15 minutes. Repeat treatment as needed to bring blood sugar within range.
|71-90 mg/dL||Yellow Flag: Blood sugar levels should be watched and treated as needed.
If youre having symptoms of low blood sugar, treat with 15 grams of rapid-acting carbohydrate and re-test in 15 minutes.
Repeat treatment or follow with a meal. If it is meal time, move forward with eating the meal. People often fall into this range when they are late for a meal or have been especially active.
What Is Low Blood Sugar
Hypoglycaemia is a condition wherein blood sugar levels are too low. This condition affects a number of diabetic people when their bodies do not have enough glucose to use as energy. Hypoglycaemia is commonly the result of taking too much of the medication/s prescribed to treat diabetes, eating less than expected, exercising more than normal or skipping meals.
Some of the symptoms of hypoglycaemia include:
Don’t Miss: Best Running Shoes For Diabetics
Normal Blood Sugar Levels Chart
Every substance present in our body has an optimum level. Above or below that specific range, that particular substance is harmful to our health. And so is sugar. There is a certain range of blood sugar which is considered as standard for almost all age. However, there might be some changes in the level considering different factors like age and other co-morbidities. Lets look at the chart:
Sometimes, random blood is also taken. In this case, the glucose level of 200 mg/dl is considered a diabetic condition.
Going through the chart you will notice certain terms regarding blood sugar which you need to understand in order to evaluate your own glucose level. So, I will just give a small brief regarding those:
- Fasting blood glucose: Here, blood sugar is tested after abstaining from food and drink for at least 8 hours.
- Postprandial blood sugar:In this case, blood sugar is tested 2 hours after a meal to access if its at the optimum level after having a meal or not.
- Random blood glucose: Blood is tested at any time of the day.
- HbA1c: It refers to a blood test which is done to evaluate the average level of blood glucose over the past 3 months. HbA1c is also known as glycosylated haemoglobin or A1C. Moreover, fasting is not required before carrying out the test.
What Blood Sugar Level Is Dangerous
There is no such thing as a dangerously high blood sugar level. However, if you random blood sugar test that reads higher than 200 mg/dL and you should consult a doctor and seek advice on how to proceed with managing the same.
Please dont wait for your blood sugar level to go beyond the cut-off of 200 mg/dL. There are many blogs out there that suggest that reading above 300 mg/dL is considered dangerous.
But we have cross-checked this information with our in-house diabetologists to make sure you have the right information.
Here are a few signs and symptoms that can help you understand if your blood sugar levels are going higher than they should:
- You feel tired and weak all the time, even while doing the same activities you do on other days, but now feel more tired
- You have a dry sensation in your mouth
- You will start feeling thirsty, more than you usually do, even if you have water or fluids
- You get a feeling of nausea or vomiting
- You need to go to the toilet to urinate more often than you usually do
- Your vision feels blurry or you have trouble seeing
- You feel hungrier than you usually do
- You may feel dizzy when you stand up
Please keep in mind that the target healthy blood sugar ranges mentioned in this article are for a general overview, and in some cases, it is possible that the target healthy ranges will vary from person to person.
No more stress while managing diabetes
Dont struggle alone & get the expert care you deserve
Recommended Reading: Can Urgent Care Treat Diabetes
What Does A High Blood Glucose Level Mean
If your fasting blood glucose level is 100 to 125 mg/dL , it usually means you have prediabetes. People with prediabetes have up to a 50% chance of developing Type 2 diabetes over the next five to 10 years. But you can take steps to prevent Type 2 diabetes from developing.
If your fasting blood glucose level is 126 mg/dl or higher on more than one testing occasion, it usually means you have diabetes.
In either of these cases, your provider will likely order a glycated hemoglobin test before diagnosing you with prediabetes or diabetes. An A1c shows your average blood sugar over a few months.
There are a few different types of diabetes. The most common forms are:
- Type 2 diabetes : T2D happens when your pancreas doesnt make enough insulin or your body doesnt use insulin well , resulting in high blood glucose levels. This is the most common type of diabetes.
- Type 1 diabetes : T1D is an autoimmune disease in which your immune system attacks the insulin-producing cells in your pancreas for unknown reasons. Your pancreas can no longer produce insulin. At diagnosis, people with Type 1 diabetes usually have very high blood glucose .
- Gestational diabetes: This condition can develop in pregnant people usually appearing during the middle of pregnancy, between 24 and 28 weeks. The high blood sugar goes away once the pregnancy is over. Pregnant people have screenings for gestational diabetes with a glucose challenge test and/or glucose tolerance test.
What Happens If My Blood Glucose Level Becomes Too Low
Sometimes blood glucose levels drop below where they should be, which is called hypoglycemia. For most people with diabetes, the blood glucose level is too low when it is below 70 mg/dL.
Hypoglycemia can be life threatening and needs to be treated right away. Learn more about how to recognize and treat hypoglycemia.
Don’t Miss: Daily Sugar Intake For Diabetics
How Does Fasting Blood Sugar Test Work
When we dont eat anything for as long as 8 hours, the sugar level in our body goes down. Then our liver secrets some stored glucose in our blood vessels which will move into body cells with the help of insulin. So, in a fasting blood sugar test if your blood sugar level is more than normal that means your body lacks insulin and you may have diabetes.
What Is Blood Glucose
Glucose mainly comes from carbohydrates in the food and drinks you consume. Its your bodys main source of energy. Your blood carries glucose to all of your bodys cells to use for energy.
If you have elevated blood glucose levels , it usually indicates diabetes. Diabetes develops when your pancreas doesnt make any insulin or enough insulin or your body isnt responding to the effects of insulin properly.
Dont Miss: Type 2 Diabetes After Kidney Transplant
Also Check: Type 1 Diabetes Meal Plan For Child
What Is Diabetic Ketoacidosis
If you think you may have low blood sugar, check it even if you dont have symptoms.
When too many ketones are produced too fast, they can build up in your body and cause diabetic ketoacidosis, or DKA. DKA is very serious and can cause a coma or even death. Common symptoms of DKA include:
- Fast, deep breathing.
- Nausea and vomiting.
If you think you may have DKA, test your urine for ketones. Follow the test kit directions, checking the color of the test strip against the color chart in the kit to see your ketone level. If your ketones are high, . DKA requires treatment in a hospital.
DKA happens most in people with type 1 diabetes and is sometimes the first sign of type 1 in people who havent yet been diagnosed. People with type 2 diabetes can also develop DKA, but its less common.
How Much Exercise Daily To Control Type 2 Diabetes
Best Medication For Diabetic Neuropathy This dream shows how he really felt at the type 2 diabetes fasting glucose banquet the night before. He felt anxious and feared that he was not performing well enough, and at the blood suger same time, he was dissatisfied with certain people.
If a person with a sexy allergy has a powerful performance, it exercise for the diabetic should is just a similarity, although it is often enough to teach oneself to be a first class athlete, but glucose definition biology the insider can recognize it sexual allergy is current diabetes medications list a sign of weakness, not a sign of strength.
What s what should your blood sugar be in the morning the big deal People live for the good of others. Are for diabetic neuropathy you born to do bad things and the blood sugar solution diet reviews be annoying Or come to be a rice bucket, doing nothing, nothing to benefit others Please best medication for diabetic neuropathy bear in whats low blood sugar mind I practice immeasurable, and my practice is immeasurable practice.
At first, I didn t pay much attention to this control type 2 diabetes case, but after watching the video, I became interested.
Kind of god yin god. The yin god is like the do you need to fast for a hemoglobin a1c blood test sunrise, with golden brilliance, bright pcos once weekly diabetes medication shining, no clouds, wonderful everywhere, supernatural powers in it.
Recommended Reading: What Can I Eat During Intermittent Fasting
Recommended Reading: Sliding Scale For Insulin Injection
How To Lower A1c Levels Naturally
Call it what you will: hemoglobin A1C, glycosylated hemoglobin, HbA1c or just A1C, these numbers, known as A1C levels, play a huge role in how your diabetes is managed. Its also used to diagnose diabetes, as well as prediabetes. Your A1C is a blood test that provides information about your average blood sugar levels over the past three months. Your provider and diabetes care team use this number to gauge how things are going and if and how to tweak your diabetes treatment plan. For most people who have diabetes, the American Diabetes Association recommends an A1C of less than 7%. The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists advises a tighter goal of 6.5% or lower. Your goal may be completely different, and thats OK .
Which Is Right For You
Finding the best glucose monitoring system that is right for you is about finding the choice that best suits your needs. By considering the benefits and limitations between the different systems that are available in Canada, you can find a system that meets your individual requirements while improving the efficiency and effectiveness of your diabetes care routine.
Our glucose monitoring comparison chart provides a summary of CGM, Flash glucose monitoring devices and test strips and meters.
Recommended Reading: What Is Dangerously High Blood Sugar