Can anyone tell me why my BG level goes UP even when I havent eaten anything…?
It’s driving me nuts, and I just dont “get” it. I read somewhere that in the days before synthetic insulin was invented, the way they treated diabetics was to almost starve them. If they didnt eat, the sugar levels couldn’t go up…! That I get. It makes sense, albeit not a great way to live but hey, that was then. So what’s changed, or is it just me?

Yes, they did - back in the concentration camps they used to starve them and make them do hard labor. Can you imagine ? I was diagnosed in the 1950’s and living in Africa so treatment then was not much better !!

Hi Debi,
your liver is the culprit. It continuously dumps glucose in the blood and sometimes it decides to be extra helpful. This can be caused by stress, going hungry for a long time, exercise (for some people at least), dawn phenomenon or getting sick… And sometimes I feel like my liver just does it to annoy me. :wink:

I think of it in the same way I think of exercise. Sugar production happens all the time because my body is constantly burning calories. Burning calories is, in essence, the break down of sugar whether it be from something you’ve eaten or from resources stored in your body (fat). Our cells are designed to hold insulin so it can always use this sugar that is constantly broken down. When we don’t have enough insulin then our bodies can’t properly use the sugar and don’t get the energy they need. The body then panics and the liver dumps more sugar in the blood, assuming that if it’s not getting nutrients then there isn’t enough sugar. In fact, we have too much sugar and not enough insulin to process it. In the days that they treated diabetics by starving them sugar levels did continue to rise. Most people didn’t last more than a couple years and those years were spent in a state of ketoacidosis. Their lives were pretty much restricted to what we now call our “Honeymoon” period before our bodies all together stop producing insulin. Of course, for many type 2 diabetics the starvation was enough to stop the progression of their diabetes, but all type 1’s died early and uncomfortable. Nothing has changed now, it’s just that we can actually treat it (nearly) properly so we live and can see the day to day effects of diabetes. Thank God that we have the technology we do so we aren’t forced to starve until death!

You didn’t mention whether you were on a pump or not, but my first thought was that if you are on a pump you don’t have the correct basal rate. These fasting tests are a good way to check on basal rates, in fact. As Debi said, you need that background insulin for the regular glucose from the liver. If you don’t get the basal right nailed down you wil see a steady rise (or drop) in the bg level. Then there are other possible culprits, usually hormonal and sometimes related to stress or illness.

I’ve been to see the dietician and I asked the same question.She told me to eat about the same time every day and to be sure to eat a snack before bedtime that has lots of protien.Maybe it would stablize your sugar better.I hope it works for you.

Ever heard of basal metabolism? Even when our body is not active, we still need some insulin, to maintain that basal metabolism. Rebecca explained the rest in more detail.

Regarding this: I read somewhere that in the days before synthetic insulin was invented, the way they treated diabetics was to almost starve them
This was the only way to keep diabetics alive for some time. However, their levels would go up, starving only helped to avoid drastic increase of BG after the meals. Eventually, with or without the food, they would die from diabetic ketoacidosis.
By the way, it was not actually synthetic insulin. First insulin was extract made from animal pancreases.

I was thinking along the same lines as Greg (the other culprits). Stress is always effecting me. I try to take a more laid back position…but even telling myself this doesn’t really change the fact that the initial stress of any situation has already played a part in my bg.