Slideshow from Everyday Health: 10 Surprising Causes of Blood Glucose Swings

By jayabee52 Latest Reply 2015-08-14 16:52:07 -0500
Started 2014-10-04 01:42:43 -0500

Many people with diabetes recognize that stress and illness can wreak havoc on their blood glucose, but other causes are more difficult to identify. See this slideshow to learn several reasons your BG will fluxuate.

68 replies

JSJB 2015-08-14 16:52:07 -0500 Report

The information was very helpful. When my b/g's spike I blame it on what I ate the night before but thinking back I do have sleepless nights and family problem which cause stress in the morning.

LRD 2014-10-26 12:02:22 -0500 Report

Thanks for the info. I have never washed my hands before pricking my finger. The things that doctors don't tell you. I have learned that Metformin causes pain in the body. My hands and wrist hurt. Is there any suggestions for this? Linda

jayabee52 2014-10-30 19:10:17 -0500 Report

Yes Linda I was told to use the alcohol wipes to clean my finger before lancing it. I learned later that the alcohol could throw off the reading. Read here on DC that it is much better to wash with plain soap and water.

As far as Met goes, different folks' reactions are different to many substances and Met is one of them. All I can suggest is to consult your Dr and tell of your discomfort. You may want to ask Dr if you can be placed on a different medication if the discomfort is too great. Most have gastro-intestinal difficulties, but this is the first time I've heard of it causing pain in the body, particularly those specific parts

It will be interesting to see what Dr says about it.

God's best

LRD 2014-10-31 12:07:09 -0500 Report

Thanks. I read it on the information on metformin. I will definitely ask the doctor. Probably the endocrinologist. Right now I have an MD and he doesn't bring up the counting of carbs. So I am not sure if he knows much about this disease as he should. I see the endo in December. Thanks again. Linda

Deaconess Jane
Deaconess Jane 2014-10-11 22:49:18 -0500 Report

I realize most artificial sweeteners are off-limits, but what about stevia. It's a natural sweetener and isn't suppose to raise blood-sugar levels. Anyone have experience with this sweetener? I use it in the green/herbal tea I brew and it's delicious.

jayabee52 2014-10-12 00:20:40 -0500 Report

Howdy DJ
haven't seen you posting for a while welcome back!

Yes there are a lot of folks who use Stevia, most notably Gabby. (I do not so I have no direct experience with it.) There's many discussions on it (63) and here is a couple of them:

and another ~

Praying this helps

haoleboy 2014-10-11 23:25:49 -0500 Report

why would sweeteners be "off-limits". If you are concerned about the possible (but as of yet unproven) long term effects I get that, but there is no other reason a diabetic can't use those sweeteners.
If you are looking to stay "natural", PURE Stevia is the way to go … but be sure to check the ingredients as pure is becoming hard (if not impossible) to find commercially.


Naturalexpressions 2014-10-13 10:44:45 -0500 Report

Hi Steve,
Stevia is OK, it taste awful though. Splenda is easier to use and
tastes better. Splenda is made by fermenting sugar. Splenda is a fiber when it comes out of the (natural) fermentation process.
Aspartame (equal) is a nasty chemical concoction. Stevia is made from a secret process known only to Coke who owns the

Deaconess Jane
Deaconess Jane 2014-10-12 17:55:23 -0500 Report

Artificial sweeteners are something I don't use. Equal can have really bad side effects. Splenda was promising, but I found I didn't like the results when baking. I like Stevia as it's reported to not cause spikes in blood-sugar levels and a little bit goes a long way. A lot of folks don't like stevia because it can have a bitter after-taste. I buy ours from Swanson Vitamins and it's organic and non-bitter.

haoleboy 2014-10-08 20:22:38 -0500 Report

perhaps I am paranoid but … in addition to reading the provided info sheets for every prescription I get I also do a bit of research online as to possible side effects and interactions. do it for OTC meds as well.

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2014-10-08 07:48:27 -0500 Report

James, this is really interesting. I especially noticed the slide about steroids. My doctor in junior high and early high school pumped me full of steroids to treat asthma and allergy. I ended up becoming extremely hypoglycemic as a result. This was a reminder of the potential long-term side effects of drugs. Another reason for patients to be informed. Thank you! Gary

johio 2014-10-07 13:10:16 -0500 Report

very vague. like others, i would like a list of meds to watch out for. never really thought about artificial sweeteners as changing blood sugar levels. good to know.

jayabee52 2014-10-07 19:35:57 -0500 Report

Well Ohio, how does this grab ya? ~

There's a lot of medications which may affect one's BG up or down.

God's best to you.

johio 2014-10-07 23:01:48 -0500 Report

to be honest, it is nice to be reminded of all the things that can influence blood glucose levels. we tend to overlook all the variables and/or write them off. this slideshow at least reminds us that many things can increase or decrease levels besides food.

MATRIX8THFLOOR 2014-10-05 14:24:56 -0500 Report

Some of the info is really vague. At least they should have mentioned which medicines drive up blood sugar. If you take several meds. you will not know which one. Also I have sever sleep apnea - I didn't know this was a major contributor of my high b.s.

jayabee52 2014-10-05 17:08:06 -0500 Report

There are so many medications which affect one's BG up or down that it would have taken a whole other screen to fit it all in. I did a Google Query a couple of months ago and got a screen full of meds which affect BG levels either raising or lowering them. The list here (certainly not exhaustive) will give you some information on this effect ~

jayabee52 2014-10-07 19:38:41 -0500 Report

just posted a rather complete list of meds which affect one's BG either positively or negatively in answer to johio's request. (I knew there was something like this around the web somewhere)

MATRIX8THFLOOR 2014-10-06 14:50:01 -0500 Report

Don't need a full page - just figured they could have mentioned the top 3 to look out for.

jayabee52 2014-10-06 15:53:29 -0500 Report

why should you be satisfied with an incomplete answer? They mention 3 but you take another which raises BG and you get blindsided by that omission.

also remember that meds also could give one a hypo as well.

Firefly7 2014-10-05 13:54:08 -0500 Report

Oh my goodness Jay! Such good information and reminders! If one does not watch out, you could become a nervous wreck, while applying these tips to everyday life, until it becomes habit!! LOL

rolly123 2014-10-04 20:27:11 -0500 Report

I liked the slideshow I have five I do my biggest is caffeen and not washing hands all time and the weather! That explain my highs don't match A1c

Boo65 2014-10-04 16:05:58 -0500 Report

I drink decaf only and have a hell of a time with sleeping. Wake up early (4:00 am) and can't get back to sleep. And then the tinitus kicks in and it is a crappy day all round. Blood sugars good through all this though. So I guess I am lucky in one way. lol

jayabee52 2014-10-05 00:51:38 -0500 Report

I have trouble sleeping as well, Boo. A lot of these responses I make on DC are due to inability to sleep and I want to do something of value since I can't sleep.

DawnieD 2014-10-04 12:05:45 -0500 Report

Thanks. I wonder if I am consistent in my use of aspartame or sucrose and also stick to the same amount of caffeine daily, do you think they still may be throwing off some of my results? That's assuming that I slept well and it's not beastly sweaty-hot!

jayabee52 2014-10-04 12:50:17 -0500 Report

I wouldn't know as I don't use aspartame or sucrose (table sugar? — did you mean sucralose [splenda] which I don't use either and recommend that everyone who uses it get off of it asap.) I don't drink coffee either.

So if you'd like to be a guinea pig for yourself, you could cut out one of those for a month or two and record your BG readings. You'd get an answer for how your metabloism works with those substances.

maryanne55 2014-10-04 19:49:13 -0500 Report

i been using splenda for years but lucky no affect or problems with it. gotta have my coffee though lol i can drink cup of coffee at bedtime and still sleep like a baby. go figues

jayabee52 2014-10-05 00:58:24 -0500 Report

No effects or problems you have yet noticed. These problems may take years to build up.

When I was in college I would routinely drink a cup or two of coffee and then go to bed and sleep. Probably because I wasn't allowing myself to get enough sleep. That's been over 40 yrs ago now and I still have problems with sleep, and I think a lot of my "medical challenges" is due to my forcing my body to stay awake and work long shifts at the hospital.

maryanne55 2014-10-05 14:44:14 -0500 Report

yes could be. ive been doing it for 15 yrs+. my nuropathy wakes me up alot but after starting med for it i sleep really great

maryanne55 2014-10-05 14:44:12 -0500 Report

yes could be. ive been doing it for 15 yrs+. my nuropathy wakes me up alot but after starting med for it i sleep really great

maryanne55 2014-10-05 14:43:51 -0500 Report

yes could be. ive been doing it for 15 yrs+. my nuropathy wakes me up alot but after starting med for it i sleep really great

maryanne55 2014-10-05 14:43:46 -0500 Report

yes could be. ive been doing it for 15 yrs+. my nuropathy wakes me up alot but after starting med for it i sleep really great

valentine lady
valentine lady 2014-10-04 11:17:56 -0500 Report

Very good!!! I found this great… helped to remind me of some of the things I had forgotten. You sure know how much my Bg swings all over thr place, at times. I'll keep this information close at hand. Thanks. Again James. ?.
Hugs, P

nefertari 2014-10-04 10:57:33 -0500 Report

Great info at a time when I really needed it. With this heat wave going on I can understand some of my problems. Thanks for this help Jay.

RebDee 2014-10-04 10:51:43 -0500 Report

Thanks Jaybee, this was very informative. Last week my BS went up because I had a cortisone shot in my knee. Still not taking insulin since bariatric sleeve surgery. Hope to be able to continue that way.

CaliKo 2014-10-04 10:10:20 -0500 Report

Always good to be reminded of these things. We're in this for the long haul. Hope you are doing well, James.

Mary Taour
Mary Taour 2014-10-04 09:20:27 -0500 Report

This was a good reminder for me on most things… but helps me to become more diligent on my routine… Thank you so much for sharing this!

Littlesister56 2014-10-04 08:37:08 -0500 Report

The one about weather conditions I did not know about. Personally I have a hard time in the heat. Thanks for posting Jayabee52

Littlesister56 2014-10-04 08:34:28 -0500 Report

My late mother was a severe Asthmatic and was on Prednisone for almost 27 yrs, as a result had steroid induced diabetes for several yrs before she passed.

tuesdaysgirl 2014-10-04 06:03:06 -0500 Report

This was interesting. I didn't know that handling fruit before testing could cause a higher count.

jayabee52 2014-10-04 12:40:53 -0500 Report

yes just having the residue of something on one's skin will affect one's BG, usually making it high.
Sometimes I forget to wash my fingers before I poke them and will get a reading of like 200 mg/dl, and I hadn't eaten anything which could cause such a raise in BG. Many times I will wash my fingers and retake and will get a more believable number, then again sometimes I don't and have no idea why the elevated reading.

Blessings to you


MrsCDogg 2014-10-04 02:50:11 -0500 Report

Very helpful. When I was a CNA I took care of a gentleman who had steroid induced diabetes. At the time I had no idea that such a thing was even possible.
Thanks for sharing!