Saturday, July 13, 2024

How Long After Eating To Test Blood Sugar

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How To Measure Your Spikes

When to Check Your Blood Sugar

The American Diabetes Association recommends you check your blood sugar levels right before mealtime with a blood sample from a finger stick. Then do it again 1 to 2 hours after that first bite of food.

Keep this up for a week or so. Write down the time and the blood sugar number. Make a note about anything you think might affect your levels, like medicine or exercise. And don’t forget to log exactly what you ate, along with portion sizes and the amount of carbs.What levels are too high after a meal? Experts vary on what the number should be, but the ADA says a general goal is a blood sugar level under 180 mg/dL, 1 to 2 hours after a meal. Talk to your doctor about what you should aim for, and don’t adjust your medicine without speaking to them first.

How Do Carbs Affect Blood Sugar

Carbs in food make your blood sugar levels go higher after you eat them than when you eat proteins or fats. You can still eat carbs if you have diabetes. The amount you can have and stay in your target blood sugar range depends on your age, weight, activity level, and other factors. Counting carbs in foods and drinks is an important tool for managing blood sugar levels. Make sure to talk to your health care team about the best carb goals for you.

Checking Your Blood Sugar

Your meals, medicine, and exercise all revolve around your blood sugar. So youâll need to test it regularly.

Your doctor will tell you how many times to do it each day. Itll depend on the kind of diabetes you have and how much insulin or other medicine youâre taking.

If youâre taking insulin several times a day, you may need to do a test before each meal and before you go to bed.

If youâre taking long-acting insulin, you may only need to test before breakfast and before dinner.

If youâre taking other medicine but not insulin, you may not need a test every day.

Keep extra-close watch on your blood sugar if you do vigorous exercise. Physical activity can affect your level for hours even the next day. You may need to check your blood sugar before, during, and after each workout.

Show Sources

Joslin Diabetes Center: âDiabetes and Scheduling: Starting a Routine,â âOral Diabetes Medications Summary Chart.â

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: âManaging Diabetes,â âDiabetes Diet, Eating, and Physical Activity.â

Kaiser Permanente: âWhat to Eat, How Much, and When,â âAction Plan for Healthy Eating.â

Mayo Clinic: âDiabetes management: How lifestyle, daily routine affect blood sugar,â âDiabetes,â âBlood sugar testing: Why, when and how.â

Food & Nutrition: âMeal Times and Diabetes: Whatâs the Connection?â âYour Medicare Coverage: Nutrition therapy services .â

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As A Person With Diabetes Why Is It Important To Test Your Blood Sugar After You Eat

People with diabetes are at risk of adverse consequences from untreated blood sugar spikes. On top of that, postprandial blood sugar can impact your overall HbA1c. That means its crucial to pay close attention to your changing blood glucose levels throughout the day especially after meals.

Regular glucose level checks are the best way to track your blood sugar. For many people with diabetes, this process involves measuring a blood sample with a traditional glucose meter. Alternatively, you may wish to use a continuous glucose monitor system for fingerstick-free* glucose results. Either way, you wont be able to understand how meals affect your blood sugar without these tests.

Using The Same Finger All The Time

Printable Blood Sugar Chart Template

People choose to use the same finger and the same spot in part because everyone has a favorite, says Uelmen, and also because calluses build up and cut down on the discomfort. But varying your fingers is better.

The solution for better diabetes control: “The goal is to use a different finger each day or each time,” she says. Switching fingers allows the pricked finger to heal and also helps to avoid pain caused by repeat jabs.

If your blood sugar readings are generally consistent, you can even try alternate site testing, such as using the palm of your hand, if you want to get away from your fingers periodically. But simply using different spots on the same finger can also prevent soreness.

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How Can I Treat High Blood Sugar

Talk to your doctor about how to keep your blood sugar levels within your target range. Your doctor may suggest the following:

  • Be more active. Regular exercise can help keep your blood sugar levels on track. Important: dont exercise if ketones are present in your urine. This can make your blood sugar go even higher.
  • Take medicine as instructed. If your blood sugar is often high, your doctor may change how much medicine you take or when you take it.
  • Follow your diabetes meal plan. Ask your doctor or dietitian for help if youre having trouble sticking to it.
  • Check your blood sugar as directed by your doctor. Check more often if youre sick or if youre concerned about high or low blood sugar.
  • Talk to your doctor about adjusting how much insulin you take and what types of insulin to use.

Dont Inject The Insulin Too Deep

Insulin is supposed to be injected into the fat layer under the skin using a short needle. This is referred to as a subcutaneous injection.

If you inject the insulin too deep and it enters your muscle, your body may absorb it too quickly. The insulin might not last very long and the injection could be very painful.

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The Big Picture: Checking Your Blood Glucose

Blood sugar monitoring is the primary tool you have to find out if your blood glucose levels are within your target range. This tells you your blood glucose level at any one time.

Its important for blood glucose levels to stay in a healthy range. If glucose levels get too low, we can lose the ability to think and function normally. If they get too high and stay high, it can cause damage or complications to the body over the course of many years.

The logging of your results is vital. When you bring your log to your health care provider, youll have a good picture of your body’s response to your diabetes care plan. To help keep track of your levels, we have a glucose log. We also have a blood glucose log available for purchase that is smaller so you can carry it with you.

What Causes Post


Two types of carbs â sugars and starches â are primarily responsible for increasing your blood sugar. After you eat these carbs, digestive enzymes break them down into simple sugars, which are absorbed into your bloodstream. The pancreas responds to the influx of sugar by releasing insulin, which returns sugar levels back to normal, according to the American Diabetes Association .

Your blood sugar peaks about 90 minutes after eating a meal, says Palinski-Wade. It can peak faster if you only consumed quickly digested carbs, such as hard candy or juice, she says, but after a balanced meal containing protein, fat and fiber, blood sugar peaks between one to two hours after eating. Within a few hours after a meal, your blood sugar should drop back down.

Portion sizes, the type of foods in your meal and when you eat can all influence how high and how quickly your blood sugar peaks. Carbohydrates that do not contain fiber, such as foods made from processed white flour and white rice, cause higher blood sugar levels, and high-carb beverages, such as sugar-sweetened drinks, can have a significant effect on glucose levels. Bigger portions of carbs can also cause larger blood sugar spikes.

Read more:Do Oranges Raise Your Blood Sugar?

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How Do I Check

People with diabetes check their blood glucose levels by poking their fingertips and using a blood glucose meter or a continuous glucose monitor to measure the blood glucose level at that moment. Read on to find out how to use a blood glucose meter. To find out more about CGMs, start by talking to your doctor.

What Are Target Blood Sugar Levels For People With Diabetes

A target is something that you aim for or try to reach. Your health care team may also use the term goal. People with diabetes have blood sugar targets that they try to reach at different times of the day. These targets are:

  • Right before your meal: 80 to 130
  • Two hours after the start of the meal: Below 180

Talk with your health care team about what blood sugar numbers are right for you.

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How Do I Test My Blood Sugar

Consider testing your blood sugar at the same time as your ketones to get a more holistic perspective of whatâs happening in your body. For instance, is that new low-carb protein bar going to keep you in ketosis without spiking your blood sugar? Thereâs really only one way to find out: Testing both ketones and blood glucose.

You can even use both of these readings to determine where you sit on the Glucose Ketone Index .

Insulin And Blood Sugar

Free Printable Blood Sugar Chart Template (Excel, Word, PDF)

Insulin is an important hormone that helps regulate your blood sugar levels. The pancreas makes insulin. It helps control your blood sugar levels by assisting the cells that absorb sugar from the bloodstream.

If you have type 1 diabetes, your body doesnt make insulin. This means you have to inject insulin every day.

If diet and exercise arent enough to manage blood sugar, those with type 2 diabetes may be prescribed medications to help keep blood sugar levels within target ranges.

If you have type 2 diabetes, your body produces insulin, but may not use it properly or produce enough of it. Your cells dont respond to insulin, so more sugar keeps circulating in the blood.

Exercise can help the cells respond better and be more sensitive to insulin. The proper diet can also help you avoid spikes in blood sugar. This can help keep your pancreas functioning well since high blood sugar levels decrease pancreatic function.

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Expected Results In Diabetics

Diabetics experience larger spikes in blood glucose that take longer to return to baseline. For diabetics, blood glucose an hour after eating should remain below 180 mg/dL or no more than 80 mg/dL over your pre-meal levels. The highest spikes in blood glucose levels often occur after breakfast. If you experience hypoglycemia, or low blood glucose levels before a meal, you might experience a higher-than-normal spike over baseline levels this doesnt necessarily indicate an abnormal rise.

Are The Test Times Youve Been Given Going To Help You Enough

One question to ask yourself is are the test times and targets youve been given going to help you manage your gestational diabetes the best you possibly can?

If you have only been asked to test your blood sugar levels before all meals one day and after all meals the next, is this giving you enough information to be able to understand how and where to adjust your diet to achieve the best possible blood sugar levels?

Likewise, if you have only been asked to monitor your blood sugar levels once a week, is this going to be sufficient enough for you to see whats happening and your tolerance to different foods. Or does it encourage you to follow a strict diet on the day you know youre testing on and to be less strict when you know you are not testing?

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Low Blood Glucose Levels

Hypoglycaemia is when your blood glucose level below is too low . This can occur when on insulin injections or medications that make the pancreas produce more insulin. This is why it is important to know how your medication works. If unsure, ask your healthcare professional or Pharmacist how your medication works and if it could cause hypoglycaemia.

Signs and symptoms of hypoglycaemia include:

  • Excessive sweating
  • Change from normal behaviour e.g. unusually aggressive or tearful

Low blood glucose levels can be caused by:

  • Delayed or missed meal/snack
  • Eating less starchy food than usual
  • Being more activity than usual
  • Taking too much insulin or diabetes tablets
  • Drinking too much alcohol or drinking alcohol without having starchy food

Treating a low blood glucose level

Treat immediately with 15-20grams of fast acting carbohydrate

  • 170ml of Lucozade
  • 200ml of smooth orange juice
  • 4-5 GlucoTabs, 5-6 dextrose tablets or 4 jelly babies
  • Non-diet fizzy drink Regularly check label of product since some manufactuerers are planning to reduce the sugar content of their drinks due to Soft Drinks Industry Levy

After 5-10 minutes if blood glucose level is still below 4 mmol/l, repeat one of the above. Once blood glucose is 4 mmol/l or higher then have something to eat such as:

  • A slice of bread
  • Two plain biscuits or crackers
  • Or your usual meal if it is due.

If unconscious, nothing should be given by mouth and paramedics should be called.

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What Is Blood Sugar

Lower Blood Sugar After Eating Breakfast. Are Your Blood Glucose Levels Normal?

Blood sugar, also known as blood glucose, comes from the food you eat. Your body creates blood sugar by digesting some food into a sugar that circulates in your bloodstream.

Blood sugar is used for energy. The sugar that isnt needed to fuel your body right away gets stored in cells for later use.

Too much sugar in your blood can be harmful. Type 2 diabetes is a disease thats characterized by having higher levels of blood sugar than whats considered within normal limits.

Unmanaged diabetes can lead to problems with your heart, kidneys, eyes, and blood vessels.

The more you know about how eating affects blood sugar, the better you can protect yourself against diabetes. If you already have diabetes, its important to know how eating affects blood sugar.

Your body breaks down everything you eat and absorbs the food in its different parts. These parts include:

  • vitamins and other nutrients

The carbohydrates you consume turn into blood sugar. The more carbohydrates you eat, the higher the levels of sugar youll have released as you digest and absorb your food.

Carbohydrates in liquid form consumed by themselves are absorbed more quickly than those in solid food. So having a soda will cause a faster rise in your blood sugar levels than eating a slice of pizza.

Fiber is one component of carbohydrates that isnt converted into sugar. This is because it cant be digested. Fiber is important for health, though.

  • white grain products, such as pasta and rice
  • cold processed cereals

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Choose The Right Insulin

The right insulin program can make or break your ability to control after-meal spikes. In general, insulins and other medicines that work quickly and for a short time will work better than those that work slowly over a prolonged period.

For instance, rapid-acting insulin analogs , which start working 1015 minutes after injection and peak in about an hour, will cover the after-meal blood glucose rises much better than Regular insulin, which takes 30 minutes to begin working and 23 hours to peak.

Newer ultra-rapid insulins, such as Fiasp , works even faster, with an onset and peak occurring 810 minutes earlier than traditional rapid-acting insulins.

The way insulin is administered can dramatically affect its speed of action. Afrezza is an inhaled insulin formulation that can be used at mealtimes. Because the dry powder is absorbed through the lungs , its onset and peak are much earlier than injected insulin .

Research has also shown that injected insulin can work much faster when the injection site is warmed. This can be accomplished by rubbing the site, immersing in warm water or exercising the muscle near the site. Warming the site causes the blood vessels near the skin to dilate, which allows the insulin to absorb more quickly. By the way, smoking causes the blood vessels to constrict, so quitting smoking might improve your post-meal blood sugar .

Before And After Exercise

This is crucial, because exercising with a low or even in-range blood sugar level can be dangerous, depending on the length and intensity of the exercise you plan to do.

Make sure to work with your doctor to determine an appropriate pre-exercise blood sugar level, but people usually like to have their levels sit a little higher than normal before starting any vigorous cardiovascular exercise to prevent severe hypoglycemia.

On the other hand, some peoples blood sugars tend to rise during exercise, especially if they are doing weightlifting or types of exercise that spike adrenaline levels in the body. Its important to make sure your blood sugar is at an appropriate level in case it will rise during your workout.

You also dont want your blood sugar to be too high before exercise, either. The Mayo Clinic actually advises against people with diabetes exercising if their starting blood sugar is above 250 mg/dL.

This is due to the fact that if a body is exercising without enough insulin in the bloodstream, the liver and kidneys will inadvertently release more sugar into the body, increasing your number even more and putting you at risk for dehydration, ketones, and even increased risk of spiraling into diabetic ketoacidosis .

Always check your blood sugar after exercise as well, as some people require a post-exercise bolus to combat spikes due to temporary pump settings that had decreased their basal rates.

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