Managing Dawn Phenomenon

By CW2014 Latest Reply 2015-04-27 06:15:16 -0500
Started 2014-12-02 04:52:50 -0600

I'm a lurking T2, diagnosed in May 2014, currently managing BG levels well with diet and exercise (hooray!).

The one thing I'm struggling to manage adequately (boo!) is waking BG levels, which are the outliers in the day, generally between 6.7 and as high as 8.0.

Can any fellow T2s who are in a similar boat comment on any tips, tricks or approaches that have helped them manage the Dawn Phenomenon?

Thanks in advance,

10 replies

CW2014 2015-04-27 06:15:16 -0500 Report

Thanks everyone for your suggestions!

I thought I'd report back…

I've discovered I can control my DP to a reasonable extent by changing my diet to a LCHF (low carb healthy fat) approach. Carbs always less than 50g per day, some days none at all. Quite often in nutritional ketosis (yep I measure that and it correlates well with lower waking BG).

Impacted my cycling ability for the first couple of weeks, but now back to normal speeds (and better) just burning fat.

Waking BG now rarely over 7, with low 6s the norm. Also much lower BG during the day than before. A few lapses back into carbs have provided the stark reminder that T2 can be helpfully thought of as "glucose intolerance" rather than "insulin resistance".


vensa 2014-12-02 23:32:13 -0600 Report

I'm having Greek yoghurt with berries (black, blue, straw, ras) before I go to sleep. It seems to be working for me …,,, this is based on the advice I received from fellow DC'ers. Again, it is very personal…you may need to experiment and figure out what works for you. All the best!

CW2014 2014-12-02 18:08:07 -0600 Report

Ok… Cheese and digestive before bed it was. Let's see what the morning brings. 7.0 now. 'Night all.

CW2014 2014-12-02 10:36:33 -0600 Report

Mmmm… Anyone with an idea of the UK equivalent of a Graham Cracker is?

Thanks for the ideas so far - time to experiment!

jayabee52 2014-12-02 11:59:59 -0600 Report

Looking on the internet you can find US style graham crackers available in certain locations in the UK.

In communicating with a lady in Scotland and another in Ireland, I believe they called them "digestive biscuits".I asked what those were and she said that they were like graham crackers. (but that has been quite a while ago and my memory may be foggy on that. Wikipedia has a discussion on digestive biscuits here ~

MewElla 2014-12-02 09:32:43 -0600 Report

I eat graham cracker with pnt butter and it has made all the difference in the world for me…

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-12-02 09:26:37 -0600 Report

I eat a protein before bed. This could be a boiled egg, chicken or something that is high in protein and that pretty much stopped the Dawn Phenomenon. I learned that lesson from James (jayabee52)

jayabee52 2014-12-02 09:22:19 -0600 Report

Howdy CW

I had a problem with dawn phenomenon a couple of years into my Dx with T 2.

I spoke with my Dr about it and he suggested eating a graham cracker slathered with peanut butter. I followed his advice and it worked for me.

The protein and complex carb combo keeps the tummy digesting through most of the night and you have a constant stream of nourisment going to the bloodstream so you don't ever go low enough to trigger a liver dump.

Praying for improving health for us all


GabbyPA 2014-12-02 06:03:04 -0600 Report

I too struggle with this and have yet to find my magic combination. Everyone is so different on this, and I think because I have always been a morning person, my body is just used to getting me up and going right out of bed.

Suggestions people have made are eating a hand full on nuts before going to bed. Or something high protein like cheese or lunch meat. The idea is to give your body something to munch on all night, as proteins break down much slower.

One thing I have found that helps a bit is exercising at night instead of the morning. That keeps your body working at eating up glucose during the night.