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6 Surprising Reasons why your Diabetes may not be under control!

Those living with diabetes are often the most disciplined with their diet and routines because diabetes as a disease demands it. Inspite of that a lot of times the blood sugars remain high and erratic, leaving people disappointed and wondering what could be the possible reason for this. So read on to know some of the lesser known causes of uncontrolled blood sugars in Diabetes.

1. Skipping Breakfast

In our busy lives, breakfast often becomes the most neglected meal. Many people even skip it all together since they are anyway too busy in the mornings and also because they feel it reduces the overall calories they consume per day. But this is not a good practice. Skipping breakfast can do more harm than good. Read on to know why.

Latest research shows that those with diabetes have an extraordinary hike in blood glucose levels after lunch and dinner when they skipped breakfast. Even if they ate a healthy balanced meal for lunch and dinner, the blood sugar peaks were higher on days that they skipped breakfast. Not only this, those who ate breakfast before 8 30 am were found to have better diabetes control than those who ate later. Insulin production is highest during the early morning hours and thereby glucose metabolism is also best during mornings.

2. Dehydration

It is very important to drink enough water through the day and keep yourself well hydrated. When the water content reduces in the blood stream, it causes the concentration of blood sugar to go up and it can affect diabetes control.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recommends 3.7 liters of water for men and 2.7 liters of water intake per day for women.

3. Over the counter cold medicines.

It is very common for people to grab over the counter pills and syrups for common cold and allergies. These medications are easily available, low cost and provide instant relief from symptoms too. But certain drugs in these pills like pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine can cause the blood sugars to raise in diabetes. So be careful when you pop pills for your cold symptoms. Try home remedies instead or meet your GP so that they can prescribe safer drugs instead.

4. Vitamin D deficiency

Vitamin D deficiency is very common among Indians. Our brown skin color, our modest dressing sense and also the intensity of the heat in our country which prevents us from exposing our unprotected skin to the harsh sun are some of the reasons for this.

Vitamin D deficiency is implicated in a lot of conditions like depression, low immunity, osteoporosis etc. It also has a role to play in blood sugar control in diabetes. It contributes to insulin resistance, inflammation and also increases risk of developing Type 2 diabetes in non diabetic individuals. So it is a good idea to get your Vitamin D levels checked and take supplements if necessary. You could also include Vitamin D rich foods in your daily meals like milk and milk products, mushrooms, soya products, seafood, eggs and nuts. Exposing yourself to direct sunlight for 20 -30 min everyday is also helpful.

5.Gum Disease

Periodontal disease or inflammation of the gums is common in diabetics. It happens due to accumulation of bacteria in the mouth. This goes both ways where diabetes by itself increases risk of gum disease and periodontitis in turn makes it hard to get the blood sugars under control, thereby becoming a vicious cycle. It is recommended for all persons with diabetes to meet the dentist at least once a year to get their teeth and gums assessed.

6. Lack of good sleep

Getting less than 8 hours of restful night sleep has been associated with uncontrolled blood sugars. Lack of good sleep causes a rise in a stress hormone called cortisol. Cortisol increases blood sugar levels and interferes with the insulin production in the body. So having a healthy sleep routine and getting a good nights rest is very important for all especially those who have diabetes.

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Veda Venkatesh
Veda Venkatesh
12 oct 2023

Nice article. One question: why is the recommendation for water lower in women than in men?

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Very informative, the article is an eye opener for truly simple things people might miss out on.

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