Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

Should My Blood Sugar Levels Rise When I Don't Eat?

Wednesday, 23 June 2010 09:13 AM

Question: I control my diabetes through diet. I keep my blood sugar levels below 110 most of the time, but my blood sugar goes up when I don't eat. Is this normal?

Dr. Hibberd's Answer:

Yes. When you miss meals, your body releases glucose in an attempt to compensate. It is particularly important for diabetics to eat at least three meals daily to avoid these glucose swings.

Many specialists prefer their diabetic patients eat five smaller meals daily as opposed to three larger meals to avoid spikes in sugar levels. Be sure to stay within your daily allocated ADA (American Diabetes Association) diet parameters to maintain good control.

Measure your success with your HBA1C (Hemoglobin A1C level), and try to keep it under 7.0 (the lower the better). Remember to aim for LDL cholesterol under 80, and be sure you know your HDL cholesterol reading. Pay attention to your blood pressure. Also, ask your doctor about using one baby aspirin (81 milligrams) daily (diabetics have a cardiac risk equivalent to those who have had a prior heart attack!). If you’re a smoker, stop.

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