What affects my blood glucose levels if I have diabetes?


Blood glucose levels change throughout the day. This is true for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes:

• Food pushes the blood glucose level up.

• Insulin or an oral diabetes medication brings it down.

• Stress drives it up.

• Exercise can bring it down.

• Illness makes it rise.

Diet, activity, stress, and overall general health all affect blood glucose levels. Everyone with diabetes responds somewhat differently to each of these. It would be wonderful if there was a magic formula to tell you how to arrive at the right blood glucose level. Instead, you’ll need to discover how each of these factors affects your blood glucose level. Knowing how much to eat, how much to exercise, and how much insulin or medication to take is not always easy. You are likely to feel frustrated at times. Look to your health care team for support. They can also help you learn to understand the meaning of your self-monitoring results and what to do about them.

Continue Learning about Diabetes


Diabetes mellitus (MEL-ih-tus), often referred to as diabetes, is characterized by high blood glucose (sugar) levels that result from the body’s inability to produce enough insulin and/or effectively utilize the insulin. Diabetes ...

is a serious, life-long condition and the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is a disorder of metabolism (the body's way of digesting food and converting it into energy). There are three forms of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that accounts for five- to 10-percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may account for 90- to 95-percent of all diagnosed cases. The third type of diabetes occurs in pregnancy and is referred to as gestational diabetes. Left untreated, gestational diabetes can cause health issues for pregnant women and their babies. People with diabetes can take preventive steps to control this disease and decrease the risk of further complications.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.