Dawn phenomenon is the phenomenon which causes a rapid rise or fall in body blood sugar during early morning hours. Dawn phenomenon of diabetes is a common experience seen among diabetics as a result of insulin resisting hormones induced at night time. Let’s go deep into the cause of this dawn phenomenon or liver dump effect. Researchers found that the cause of rise and fall in blood glucose level during early morning hours is mainly due to the release of insulin resisting hormones from liver.
Do you know what all are the hormones responsible for causing dawn phenomenon? Cortisol produced from adrenal cortex, glucagons released from alpha cells in pituitary gland, epinephrine formed from outer layer of adrenal glands and growth hormones are some examples of insulin resisting hormones causing dawn phenomenon or high blood sugar in early morning. Release of these hormones during sleep time hours initiates the release of stored energy there by increasing the level of blood glucose level.
Lowering of blood pressure is also stated as a reason for dawn phenomenon. As a result of low blood pressure, body releases stress hormones causing an increase in blood sugar level. Dawn phenomenon some times cause serious impact on type 1 diabetic patients than type 2 diabetic patients. Rise in body blood glucose level usually happens from a time period between 4 AM and 8 AM.
As we know prevention is better than cure, let’s see what all are the precautions taken for reducing the risk of dawn phenomenon diabetes. According to the studies made on diabetic patients, the major cause of rise in early morning glucose level is due to inadequate supply of insulin dosage. Hormones induced during sleep time make morning blood glucose level higher and harder to control. Regulating growth hormone with higher night time insulin dosage is a remedial measure for this situation.
Now think about your daily diet. Diet plays an important role in managing early morning blood sugar. Reducing the consumption of carbohydrates is one of the best way by which we can reduce the risk of dawn phenomenon of diabetes. Make sure to continue exercises regularly and to follow a diet with less carbohydrate concentration especially at night time. Try to include a diet with more protein content than a diet with more carbohydrate content in dinner.
Now we will see the steps taken to reduce the dawn phenomenon of diabetes. Usage of insulin pumps helps in continuous monitoring and adjustment of body blood sugar level. Trying suitable medication according to the diabetes condition is another way by which we can correct high blood sugar levels in early morning. Never hesitate to consult a doctor when fasting blood glucose level is uncontrolled even by taking regular medicines.
Diabetic patients with this phenomenon can try taking a high dosage of insulin in the early morning and a smaller dosage afterwards. This helps in reducing high blood sugar created in early morning hours. Walking is a good exercise advised by many physicians for controlling dawn diabetes. Doing exercises and taking a proper diabetic diet helps in reducing the risk of dawn diabetes.
Dr Andrew Napier