I take metformin 500 three times a day, yet my blood sugar is high?

Published on December 8, 2017

I take metformin 500 3 times a day, and I eat less carbs and exercise, yet my blood sugar levels remain high up to 171 this morning.

Q: I take metformin 500 three times a day, and I eat less carbs and I exercise, yet my blood sugar levels remain high—up to 171 this morning.

I'm sorry to hear that your blood glucose levels remain elevated despite taking metformin, watching your carbs, and exercising.

Are you getting enough high-quality sleep on a regular basis? Inadequate sleep can cause high blood sugar readings in the morning even in people who eat right, exercise, and take medication as directed.

Your elevated fasting blood blood sugar may also be due to the Dawn Phenomenon, in which increased production of growth hormone and other hormones overnight cause your liver to release stored sugar. Sometimes having a small  protein snack—like a handful of nuts or a hard-boiled egg—before bed can help lower morning blood sugar. In fact, some people find that adding some carbs, like a half cup of berries, to the protein snack actually helps bring down their morning blood sugar even more. However, this is very individual, so it's a good idea to experiment with different snacks and amounts of food to see how your own blood sugar responds.

Finally, consistency with diet, exercise, and medication is important, and it may take some time for blood sugar to normalize. If the measures above and keeping carb intake down, speak with your endocrinologist or other diabetes specialist.

Answered By dLife Expert: Franziska Spritzler, RD, CDE

Certified diabetes educator and registered dietitian living in Southern California.

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