Understanding how to manage your Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes by regularly monitoring your blood sugar is the best way to take care of your health and prevent complications. Complications caused by diabetes include blindness, kidney disease, strokes, nerve damage, strokes, and more. Below, we’ll discuss glucose, the factors that affect blood sugar, and five reasons you should monitor your glucose levels.
Table of Contents
What Is Glucose?
When monitoring glucose levels, it’s essential to understand glucose’s role in your body. Your body needs glucose for energy, which is a type of sugar the liver stores. In people with diabetes, their body either produces too much insulin or not enough. When there’s too much glucose, it means that there are higher blood sugar levels. If higher glucose levels are unchecked, high blood sugar will damage the organs in the body over time.
Factors That Affect Blood Sugar
Many factors affect blood sugar levels, such as dehydration, meal timing, caffeine intake, smoking, stress, altitude, sunburn, etc. Having a sunburn can even impact your blood sugar levels. A sunburn stresses the body, which increases blood sugar levels. Untreated celiac disease may contribute to irregular blood sugar levels as the small intestine cannot absorb nutrients properly.
5 Reasons to Monitor Your Glucose Levels
Discover Your Patterns
It’s natural for blood sugar levels to fluctuate throughout the day. By monitoring your glucose levels throughout the day, you can discover when you’re high or low and pinpoint the causes of your fluctuations. Once you find out what affects your blood sugar, you can adjust your habits accordingly.
Know When To Ask For Support
Sometimes it’s challenging to manage your diabetes, and you often don’t realize you need assistance until you start monitoring your glucose. There’s no shame in seeking help and your doctor can recommend advice on exercise, meal planning, or medications. You can then follow their suggestions to determine how well they work for you and show them the data on a future visit.
To Assess If A Medication Helps
Some people can manage their diabetes through exercise and diet, but others need medication to lend an extra hand. Such medicines may include inhibitors, metformin, insulin, and others. Tandem Diabetes recommends using a blood glucose monitor to track which medications work for you.
To Determine If Glucose Levels Are Within Target Range
When you talked to your doctor about managing your diabetes, they probably gave you a target range to achieve along with strategies to reach that target range. Monitoring your glucose levels helps determine how close you are by providing quantitative and accurate readings.
Understand What Affects Your Glucose Levels
Sometimes the most ordinary things can affect your glucose levels, and what raises one person’s blood sugar might not affect someone else’s or may even lower theirs. When you monitor your glucose levels, you can learn ways to work with what affects your blood sugar. If the problem is not enough sleep, find ways to achieve a better sleep quality.
Monitoring your glucose levels teaches you how your body responds to different factors and helps you take care of your body and feel your best. Once you control your diabetes, you’re better able to avoid any long-term diabetic complications.