"Why is blood sugar still measured mostly in the morning on an empty stomach?" Recently, Prof. Jaakko Tuomilehto from Finland asked at a big diabetes congress in Dresden. He presented a study that shows that just the blood sugar levels after eating are important. They not only provide information about whether a diabetic has a good grip on his diabetes. They also point to the risk of the dreaded sequelae, such as heart attack or stroke.
Diabetes prevention by blood glucose measurement
Even in people who do not yet have diabetes, increased post-meal blood glucose levels indicate an increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Therefore, diabetes experts in Dresden demanded that the blood sugar peaks should be paid more attention after eating.
Meal related blood sugar spikes
Until recently, little importance was attached to the phenomenon of increased blood sugar increase after eating - the so-called mealtime-related blood sugar spikes. Above all, the fasting blood sugar was considered crucial for a good metabolism in diabetics. According to the latest findings, however, the blood sugar value after eating is even more important with regard to the prognosis of the disease.
In contrast to fasting blood sugar, even short-term blood sugar peaks after eating cause lasting damage to the blood vessels, contribute to the calcification of the arteries and thus lead to an increased risk of heart attack or stroke. Therefore, the new treatment strategies are becoming increasingly important, allowing a meal-related therapy.
This is especially important for type 2 diabetics, because they are disturbed by the first, fast phase of the body's own insulin release required for eating. Your insulin response comes too late and blood sugar increases disproportionately after a meal. To achieve the insulin response as naturally as possible, you can either take a diabetic tablet directly to your meal to stimulate insulin secretion, or inject a fast-acting insulin - both effectively cut off the harmful blood sugar spikes and work much like the natural insulin response a healthy person.
Good diabetes attitude still often not achieved
Only very few people know that the latest research shows that in Europe around 22 percent of all adults have high blood sugar levels after eating. Only about 5 percent of them are considered to be ill with diabetes. Many diabetics are recognized only when the disease has already developed a bit. Most people do not suspect their problem and are at increased risk.
Experts like Prof. Tuomilehto therefore demand that the blood sugar levels after the meal should get more attention. Because the fasting blood sugar often does not prove to be sufficiently meaningful. If he is in diabetics between 90 and 126 mg / dl or five and seven mmol / l, they are usually satisfied. But what about the blood sugar after eating?
If this value is measured only occasionally, the surprise is often great: it can easily be twice as high as the regularly measured fasting value! This is actually quite logical: Man is really sober only in the second half of the night. For the rest of the day, the organism is almost always busy digesting ingested food. No wonder: we do not eat just once a day!
Fasting blood sugar only clears up over the early morning
As a result, this finding means that the treatment of diabetes should be as close to nature as possible. In practice, this means that in order to avoid complications that can lead to death in the worst case, the blood sugar levels after a meal must be regularly determined in addition to the fasting blood sugar. Only in this way is it possible to start treatment early on, which effectively shuts off the blood sugar peaks after eating and reduces the risk of late damage - at best even before it even comes to pronounced diabetes.
Prof. Tuomilehto showed impressive figures: If the blood sugar levels are lowered effectively after meals, 40 percent more people could live longer!