The DAWN EFFECT: What causes early morning blood sugar spikes? What it means for metabolic health | Summary and Q&A

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September 1, 2022
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The DAWN EFFECT: What causes early morning blood sugar spikes? What it means for metabolic health

TL;DR

The Dawn Effect is an increase in blood sugar levels in the morning due to factors such as growth hormone, cortisol, and disrupted circadian rhythm.

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Key Insights

  • 🥵 The Dawn Effect is an elevation in blood glucose levels in the morning, unrelated to eating, stress, or exercise.
  • 🧑‍🏭 Growth hormone, cortisol, and disrupted circadian rhythm are major factors contributing to the Dawn Effect.
  • 🥺 Insulin sensitivity varies among individuals, leading to different outcomes of the Dawn Effect.
  • ✋ The prevalence of the Dawn Effect is higher among individuals with impaired glucose regulation and newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes.

Transcript

what is the dawn effect and how does it affect blood sugar well let's get into it the dawn effect is an elevation in blood glucose first thing in the morning between 3 a.m and 8 a.m unlike typical glucose spikes the dawn effect isn't a direct result of eating stress or exercise it's a spontaneous increase in your fasting blood sugar that plays a pa... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: What causes the Dawn Effect?

The Dawn Effect is caused by factors such as growth hormone, cortisol, and disrupted circadian rhythm. Growth hormone increases glucose release in the liver and decreases insulin sensitivity. Cortisol counters the actions of insulin, providing energy for muscles in the morning. Disrupted circadian rhythm affects the regulation of blood sugar.

Q: Does the Dawn Effect pose a health risk?

The health risk associated with the Dawn Effect is still unclear. Some studies suggest that it may worsen overall glycemic control for diabetic individuals, but more research is needed to determine if it poses a risk for people without diabetes.

Q: How can the Dawn Effect be minimized?

Strategies to minimize the Dawn Effect include prioritizing sleep, practicing good sleep hygiene, exercising regularly, avoiding late meals, and reducing breakfast carbohydrates.

Q: What is the prevalence of the Dawn Effect?

A study in China found a prevalence rate of 8.9% among participants with no diabetes, 30.1% among those with impaired glucose regulation, and 52.4% among newly diagnosed type 2 diabetics.

Q: What causes the Dawn Effect?

The Dawn Effect is caused by factors such as growth hormone, cortisol, and disrupted circadian rhythm. Growth hormone increases glucose release in the liver and decreases insulin sensitivity. Cortisol counters the actions of insulin, providing energy for muscles in the morning. Disrupted circadian rhythm affects the regulation of blood sugar.

More Insights

  • The Dawn Effect is an elevation in blood glucose levels in the morning, unrelated to eating, stress, or exercise.

  • Growth hormone, cortisol, and disrupted circadian rhythm are major factors contributing to the Dawn Effect.

  • Insulin sensitivity varies among individuals, leading to different outcomes of the Dawn Effect.

  • The prevalence of the Dawn Effect is higher among individuals with impaired glucose regulation and newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes.

  • Strategies such as prioritizing sleep, exercising regularly, and reducing breakfast carbohydrates can help minimize the Dawn Effect.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The Dawn Effect is a spontaneous increase in fasting blood sugar levels in the morning, unrelated to eating, stress, or exercise.

  • Factors contributing to the Dawn Effect include growth hormone, cortisol, and disruptions in circadian rhythm.

  • The body's natural glucose production rises while insulin sensitivity decreases during the Dawn Effect.

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