Blood Sugar Higher in the Morning

Linda Bittle
Linda Bittle Posts: 1,500 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited September 2022 in General Health

Hello friends,

I thought I was doing pretty good on my diet to bring my blood sugar down. I have lost about 7 pounds since mid-June. Was planning on going in for a follow up blood draw this month on the low-cost lab day.

However, the hospital (where I worked for 14 months!) sent me a bill for $21after I'd paid the required amount at check-in in June. I had saved the full color flier about the low-cost labs, and got that straightened out, but it made me mad. So, I got a glucose meter and started checking levels at home.

What I have discovered is that my fasting level is always higher than my bedtime level, by as much as 20 points! Have any of you worked with this issue before? I'd appreciate any insight into why this could be so. Last night, it was 147 at bedtime (pasta on the menu), and 160 this morning.

What I'm doing:

Cutting sugar - have gotten down to 1/3 of the amount I like in my tea. Not buying candy or my beloved ice cream or pastries. Cutting out breads :-( and eating more tuna and good quality beef and pork from the local butcher. More fresh veggies. No potatoes :-( and cutting out bedtime snacking, except for a handful of almonds if I'm hungry.

Adding a little cinnamon to my morning coffee (with a good amount of half and half).

Now that it's no longer 100 degrees I'm walking again. Did 9500 steps the other day and shoot for 5000 a day. I was doing 10,000 to 19,000 on working days last year!

Stress levels are still higher than is good for me. I don't always sleep well. I'm not getting up as much in the night to pee. I did just invest in a cooling memory foam mattress pad which is helping a great deal with those little aches and pains. When I do get a good sleep, it's deep. I wake up in the same position as I went to sleep in.

Thanks for reading!


  • Monek Marie
    Monek Marie Posts: 3,535 ✭✭✭✭✭

    They say about half the people have high blood sugar reading in the morning.

    I know stress and anxiety play a role in blood sugar but I am not sure what would be best to help overall. It sounds like you have a plan in place though. Good luck!~

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Posts: 5,353 admin

    Have you tried bitters and a dill pickle first thing in the morning?

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,500 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @judsoncarroll4 I have not. Will get pickles tomorrow! I have bitters.

  • Michelle D
    Michelle D Posts: 1,415 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited September 2022

    @Linda Bittle my father in law has this happen daily. He noticed that he was checking in the morning about 12 hours after he had last eaten the night before. He was told that his body was burning the sugar stored in his fat cells (burning fat/ketosis) and that was raising his blood sugar levels. He was concerned as he is diabetic but was told by his pcp that it wasn't anything to worry about as long as it stayed in a healthy range.

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Posts: 5,353 admin

    Bitters stimulate the liver and pancreas. Sour stimulates the gallbladder, and a pickle gives the digestive system something to work on that doesn't spike blood sugar. Along with a spoonful of sesame or olive oil, that combo can really make a difference.

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,314 ✭✭✭✭✭

    My husband says that is normal if you check your blood sugar 2 hours after you eat dinner. He said that's what his doctor told him.

    His doctor is always trying to get him to use more meds but he doesn't want to add more. He's doing the same kind of things you're doing. I'd heard about gymnema sylvestre being really good for helping to regulate blood sugar. I cannot say whether it has done anything or not because he hasn't gone back for another check yet.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,502 admin

    @Linda Bittle Good for you, losing weight. That is a big step in lowering your blood sugars. Same for exercise.

    How much cinnamon are you adding to your coffee? The recommended daily amounts for assisting with controlling blood sugar levels is 1-6 grams or .5-2 tsp. So in addition to adding it to coffee, sprinkle it on morning oats or fruit, add it to baked goods, put it in smoothies, etc.

    Have you tried stevia in your morning coffee? If you don't like stevia, switching to a lower glycemic sugar like palm sugar (aka coconut sugar) might help with blood sugar spikes.

    If you are missing potatoes, you could try Jerusalem artichokes. They have a more easily digestible starch and its high in natural fibre.

    As to ice cream, we need some favourite treats. You could get a small ice cream maker and make your own frozen yogurt. If you make it yourself, you can control the ingredients (plain yogurt) and have it sweetened with an alternative like monk fruit sugar or ??? The yogurt is good for your digestive tract, too. Don't go for the commercial frozen yogurt, though, as it is often higher in sugar and fats than ice cream.

    Eliminate all processed foods. Almost all processed foods contain high fructose corn syrup. In addition to being very bad for diabetics, this product is the major contributor to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Get into the habit of reading labels to see exactly what is being added to the products you buy.

    Add more fibre to your diet. It helps keep things moving, assists with weight loss and helps balance blood sugars. Good natural fibre, not products with added fibre which is usually indicated on the label as cellulose. Cellulose = sawdust. Think steel cut oats for breakfast (cooked in water, no sugar). The traditional Scottish way is to sprinkle a tiny bit of salt on the oatmeal just before adding thick cream. :) Contrary to some diabetic diet plans I have seen, eliminate cereals, even ones that are labelled as "heart-healthy" like plain cheerios. Read the labels. Get into the habit of reading all your labels. Make your own granola, allowing you to control the sugar added. Try museli in the mornings. The night before, mix granola or raw oats in with yogurt and a bit of chopped apple and some berries.

    If you haven't already done so, switch your pasta to whole wheat pasta for more fibre.

    I'll second @judsoncarroll4's suggestion of bitters. They will improve your liver function greatly. I have found that when I am craving sweets, just a few drops of bitters on my tongue will control that craving.

    Oregon Grape root can be useful for lowering blood sugar levels. Although, there are some cautions for that and you should have a herbalist to work with that can determine a daily dose for you.

    As with many of the ailments in our modern society, so much can be controlled (or in some cases, cured) with the right adjustments to our diets.

  • shllnzl
    shllnzl Posts: 1,816 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Diabetics have the same problem. Unfortunately I can't recall the corrective actions. You could research the issue online for suggestions.

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,500 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @torey thank you! I've been thinking that 1/4 tsp of cinnamon was a lot. I will up the amount, because I really like it. There's more than one type of cinnamon - I'm going to be ordering more soon. What I had on hand is C. loureirio, but I'm thinking the C. verum is the better one for this use. Wiki lists these:

    • Cinnamomum cassia (cassia or Chinese cinnamon, the most common commercial type in the USA)
    • C. burmannii (Korintje, Padang cassia, or Indonesian cinnamon)
    • C. loureiroi (Saigon cinnamon, Vietnamese cassia, or Vietnamese cinnamon)
    • C. verum (Sri Lanka cinnamon, Ceylon cinnamon or Cinnamomum zeylanicum)
    • C. citriodorum (Malabar cinnamon)

    I'm not a big pasta fan, so that's easy for me to avoid all together. Same with cereal, although I had been trying to eat Raisin Bran because I thought it would be healthy (horrible, I found out.)

    Luckily, I am a pretty fair cook, and I love to make a soup or stew and have it for several days.

    One thing I've found that satisfies my cravings is 1/2 cup of straight from the freezer blueberries or sliced strawberries, covered with half and half and stirred up so the milk freezes around the berries. Don't even need sweetener!

  • water2world
    water2world Posts: 1,088 ✭✭✭✭

    @Linda Bittle My mom is the same way. Her diet is horrible!! and her dr. started her on a slow acting insulin injected at night. She no longer wakes up with a high sugar reading.

    I was glad to read the suggestions others provided---If I ever get Mom here, I will be trying other things suggested, but meanwhile she insists on living at an assisted living place in another state, and she thinks she didn't have a meal unless it is finished with ice cream and cake! Oh my!

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,500 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @water2world I've discovered that my mom takes very little advice from me - or from my sister, who is an LPN and learning about herbs and natural health.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,502 admin

    @Linda Bittle Yes, Cinnamomom verum is the one you want. The others might work, too, but the studies have been done on C. verum.

  • jowitt.europe
    jowitt.europe Posts: 1,411 admin

    @Linda Bittle my husband managed to reverse diabetes. He is very disciplined and uses no sugar. Well, there is still some hidden in some products, but we are very careful what we buy. We eat a lot of vegetables from our own garden. I make bread with no sugar and only from organic whole meal grain. Rice is also whole meal. The need for something sweet is covered by honey (I am a beekeeper and honey is from us, thus nothing added) and we oder organic dried fruit with no additives for drying. He also eats fruit. No problem.

    When he still had diabetes and sugar levels were higher in the morning, he would get up and go for a walk. Half and hour was enough to bring the sugar down. Or did some physical work. Physical activity is very important when you want to lower sugar levels, thus it is very good that you go for walks.

    we do have a small ice cream maker, but use it only for grandchildren. My husband used to love ice cream, but, with years, the taste changed and he does not need it anymore.

    it takes time to get used to other meals than usual. For a year or even more, it was not easy for him. Now, no problem at all.

    i wish you all the best on your way to no diabetes.

  • marjstratton
    marjstratton Posts: 1,132 ✭✭✭✭

    @Linda Bittle My husband is prediabetic and controls his blood sugar with his diet. He was diabetic but has gotten his blood sugar levels pretty much under control. He says his fasting blood sugar is always higher than his bedtime levels. This is because the liver dumps glucose into your blood in order to give the energy it needs to get your body going for the day.