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Justinjroberts DAFNE Graduate
Central Middlesex Hospital
9 posts

I have currently been experiencing a lot of work related stress. I am also having problems controlling my BG levels and am becoming very obsessive when they go high. I am also experiencing more erratic moon swings and wondered if this is a side effect of fluctuating BG levels. I think both the stress and high BG feed off each other creating a catch 22 situation. Any suggestions would be welcome.

Felix Glenn 26 posts

Hi Justin,
I get increasingly aggressive as I get higher. My wife says I am increasingly prone to road-rage when my BG is above target. She's right! I drive in a more confrontational manner when high.
Conversely, if I'm below target, I feel vunerable and over-emotional, and I have been known to cry at adverts :-)

Stress definately affects BG and I suggest keeping good records as it seems different for diferent people: For me, high levels of stress seems to burn carbs and I go low quite suddenly. I know other type ones who say it can raise BG, perhaps through adrenaline effects, stress eating etc.

We are a hormonal soup and insulin is a hormone. It must influence mood. When you said you were becoming obsessive when high, did you mean obessive about BEING high or simply obesssing about WORK?

Hang in there, Justin and try not to give yourself a hard time about fluctuating BG levels. No one gets it right all the time. Keep using the stepwise approach to home in on the true cause of the fluctuations. As you know it's often a conbination of factors, in this case stress being a player.
Maybe think about sharing a section of your diary for discussion here?

I think an emotional response to BG levels is entirely normal - anyone else?

Justinjroberts DAFNE Graduate
Central Middlesex Hospital
9 posts

Thanks for your comments, it really helps to hear how it affects others and it's not just me. I do get over obsessive when I get a high BG level, although stress and work etc does not help. Stress makes my BG go up and then that makes me more stressed and it goes up even more. Has anyone tried meditation to help alleviate stress?

Felix Glenn 26 posts

Man after my own heart.
Meditation works for me.
When things go crazy at work, a bit of stillness before I leave in the morning changes my attitude to the whole day.
Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfey do a great series of 20 min sessions, some free, some paying. I think you get what you pay for (£25?) - and I have to look past some of the new-age, north American language.
I find if I just sit and try to meditate alone, I loose focus or even fall asleep. So this works for me at the moment.

Focused or yoga breathing is also something I try (and generally don't manage) to do every day. I find this even more effective than medication in terms of slowing down my mind: Number 4, when I haven't got 2 blocked nostrils is wonderful - I recommend it.


billyb 1 post

I have been Type 1 since 1999. As a chartered accountant I teach at HND level and am stressed when mentoring students to write assignments. This seems to drive my bg levels DOWN, which may be against accepted wisdom. I take Dextrose and recover ok.

Exercise usually and normally makes my numbers go down also.

I would welcome similar observations.
Brian in Oxford

Felix Glenn 26 posts
Time 00:39 08:27 09:23 11:31 14:07 15:09 16:55 19:19 20:04 21:10 [00:39] Stayed at 3:1 all evening
[08:27] Head ache, sore throat, sinus & face pain
[09:23] Fruit
[11:31] Elmosa 3:1 orange:perseco
[15:09] Bread and cheese
[16:55] Forgot to medicate!
[20:04] Alcoholic trifle
[21:10] Truffles
CP - - 3.5 4 0+4 5 2.5 - 3 2
BG 10.6 6.9 - 4.6 2.4 - 5.9 6.5 - -
QA - - 11 1.5 - 15 - - 9 6
BI 12 18 - - - - - - - -
Ratio (QA:CP) - - 3:1 3:1 - 3:1 3:1 3:1 3:1 3:1
QA Site - Buttocks Buttocks - - - - - - Stomach
BI Site
Ketones - - - - - - - - - -
Time 00:04 06:31 08:34 10:46 10:52 11:52 15:19 16:24 17:27 19:04 21:17 23:51 [08:34] Cold is easing. Less sinus pain
[11:52] Bread
[16:24] Cold roast postatoes and crackers (& Cheese!)
[17:27] Christmas Cake
[19:04] Short walk with ollie
CP - - - - 2 4 - 5 3 - - 5.5
BG 9.0 10.1 13.7 11.4 - 12.3 7.4 - - 9.4 9.4 9.5
QA - - 0+3 0+3 6 12+3 - 15 9 - - 10
BI 12 - 18 - - - - - - - - 12
Ratio (QA:CP) - - - - 3:1 3:1 - 3:1 3:1 - 3:1 2:1
QA Site - - Right Buttock - - - - - Right Stomach - - Buttocks
BI Site - Right Buttock - - Right Stomach -
Ketones - - - - - - - - - - - -
Time 09:33 11:03 12:15 20:46 [09:33] Cornflakes&musli
[11:03] Bannock Bread
CP 4.5 5 - 4
BG - - 13.4 -
QA 14 15 0+3 12
BI - - - -
Ratio (QA:CP) 3:1 3:1 - 3:1
QA Site Buttocks Stomach - Stomach
BI Site
Ketones - - - -
Time 02:41 10:20 12:08 12:31 17:20 20:00 22:15 [02:41] Increased BI by 2. Took on carbs to prevent night hypo.
[10:20] Increased BI by 2
[12:08] Did i underestimate breakfast? Do i really need to go to 4:1?
[12:31] Took just under 3:1 because I'm driving della home
[20:00] Meal at Greenwich Jamie's then cinema munchies
CP 0+2 3.5 - 8 - 12 -
BG 7.4 10.4 13.0 4.0 9.0 - 15.9
QA - 10+2 0+3 20 - 36 0+4
BI 14 20 - - - - 14
Ratio (QA:CP) - 3:1 - 3:1 - 3:1 -
QA Site Buttocks Buttocks - Stomach - Stomach Stomach
BI Site
Ketones - - - - - - -

Hi Brian,
I could be wrong but I think STRESS generally drives BG DOWN, although not everyone has this experience. I think prolonged stress creates a glucose demand; metal and emotional pressures, which require both intense THOUGHT and EMOTION, will inevitably use sugar, right?

I'm a teacher on holiday and right now I'm struggling to keep my BG down because of the absense of teaching stress (which I love, by the way) so I have dramatically increased my BI AND my QA ratio, and I'm STILL high!

I've included 25th Christmas Day (really proud of my BGs that day :-) 'till 28th.

This cold is not helping! Confused


Justinjroberts DAFNE Graduate
Central Middlesex Hospital
9 posts

Stress can drive BG up and down. For me it always drives it up.

I also find that I need a lot more insulin to currect a high BG early in the morning and also before bed. If I had a 15 or 16 before bed I would need at least a +5 or 6 to get my levels back to normal and in some cases more. I also find that to correct a high BG early morning between 5 and 6am 1 unit of insulin only lowers my BG by 1, due to the dawn phenomena.

Also Christmas can be a difficult time due to all the festive food and rest which can disrupt a normal routine and distort BG.


Felix Glenn 26 posts

Hi Justin, really interesting to hear about your Insulin sensitivity, or rather INSENSITIVITY AM and PM.

The perceived DAFNE wisdom, that I was reminded of just the other week, is that the BG scale become almost exponentially inaccurate the higher you get. So even above 12 the accuracy of BG reading is less reliable. Which is why the advice is not to correct more than +5 to avoid risk of hypo. Hard to apply, if you are experiencing persistent highs, but worth baring in mind.

What happens to your sensitivity if you increase your BI?

Also, could you say more about your experience of Dawn Phenomenon?
Its been mentioned to me by HCPs but I'm not sure if I experience it or not.



Justinjroberts DAFNE Graduate
Central Middlesex Hospital
9 posts

Hi Felix,

As I understand it from my DAFNE clinics. The dawn phenomena is when diabetics experience a strong insulin resistance, but only at certain times of the day.

From my last DAFNE clinic as I understand it, it is due to hormones etc and is usually experienced early morning. I would imagine it will not necessarily be experienced by all diabetics and again those that do experience it may do so at different times.

One way to check would be to test your BG early morning say around 5pm or even earlier, but I would imagine you would have to test for 5 consecutive days to rule out any anomalies. However if your BG are ok then no need to check, but it is one of the things that could be responsible for a high BG in the morning.

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