10 Surprising Causes of Blood Sugar Swings You Probably Didn’t Know

Blood Sugar Swings are often the result of poor sleep, over-consumption of alcohol, and even smoking. The good news is that you can avoid blood sugar swings and improve your health simply by making lifestyle changes. Follow these 10 surprising causes of blood-sugar swings, then try these simple solutions for several days or weeks to determine what helps you feel your best.

You may be startled to learn that many factors, not just sugary foods, caffeine, or excessive fat, can cause your blood sugar to suddenly surge. And while you may already be aware of some of the more common causes, such as eating fast food, there are likely some surprises on this list that you didn't know about!

Here are 10 Surprising Causes of Blood Sugar Swings

1. Stress

We've all heard that stress can wreak havoc on the body. But did you know that when you're stressed, your body's cortisol levels may rise, causing your blood sugar levels to rise alongside them?

2. A Restless Night's Sleep

If you sleep less than seven hours or experience a restless night's sleep, this may cause your levels to increase suddenly. This is because when you sleep more deeply and for longer periods, your insulin release is generally slower and more constant--which helps keep blood sugar levels in check. The problem is when we sleep less profoundly, or for shorter periods; the brain sends a signal trickling down to the body. This causes the pancreas to release more insulin—resulting in a blood sugar "spike" during the night!

3. Emotional Upset

Emotional upset can cause your blood sugar levels to spike, especially if you are angry or anxious. If you're feeling emotionally upset, try to put yourself into a more relaxed frame of mind by taking some deep breaths and visualizing something calming with which you can associate your emotions.

4. Exercise

Exercise may help keep your blood sugar levels higher, especially if you do it in the morning. But if you do it too close to dinner time, it can make them drop. So, try doing your exercise program at least three hours before dinner for the best results.

5. A Low Carb Diet

While low-carb diets may be great for helping a person lose weight, they can also cause some blood sugar swings. This is because your body uses carbs for energy, so when you eliminate them from your diet, your body will still think its energy source has been cut off. So, it will release more insulin to compensate.

6. Skipping Meals

Eating five small meals throughout the day instead of three big ones is better if you want to stabilize your blood sugar levels. This is because when you eat regularly throughout the day, your body doesn't have to work as hard, nor does it release as much insulin as it would if you ate fewer smaller meals. So, by eating more often, you'll help keep those swings from happening!

7. Overeating on One Meal

A significant cause of blood sugar fluctuations is overeating at the beginning of a meal. This can happen if you eat more than 20 grams of carbs in 15 minutes. Of course, this won't be the best example to follow if you're trying to lose weight anyway!

8. Eating Too Many Carb-Heavy Foods

If you eat foods rich in simple carbs, such as bagels, bread, or even fruit (as well as some soft drinks), these dishes may cause blood sugar swings even if they don't contain any added sugars.

9. Overeating Protein

This is likely the case if you're trying to lose weight, as Protein can increase a person's appetite, which will cause him to eat more calories than he should if he is not careful. Also, because Protein is harder to digest, it can make a person hungrier sooner than if he had eaten a carbohydrate-rich meal.

10. Alcohol Consumption

It may seem counter-intuitive to think that alcohol consumption could cause increases in blood sugar levels, but it's true—even if you drink just one glass of wine. Why? Because when alcohol is consumed in excess, the liver begins to process this substance before anything else—even the body's insulin secretion! This means that your body will release an immediate surge of insulin--causing your blood sugar levels to spike very quickly.

If you're looking for surprising causes of blood sugar swings, this is a list you should check out. You'll be able to see the most common offenders and learn how to combat them with some simple solutions.

Some Other Things that can Cause Blood Sugar Swings

Alcohol is not an excellent choice for the morning because of its diuretic effect, which can lead to water weight loss and dehydration. On a high-carb diet, your body will have more insulin, so avoiding fried foods and high-fat meals can help keep your blood sugar levels stable. If you skip meals, your body releases more insulin to deal with the food you ate earlier.

A blood sugar spike can be caused by eating too many simple carbohydrates (e.g., bread, rice, beans, and pasta), so your body will release insulin to deal with this rise in blood glucose. This can cause a big spike in blood sugar levels as soon as you eat. Drinking fluids during meals will help to slow the rate at which the body releases insulin. Blood sugar spikes can be avoided by doing this. You can avoid blood sugar spikes and gaining weight by keeping your insulin levels low. Eating a meal high in fat is likely to cause an increase in insulin levels because your body cannot tolerate too much fat without it being stored as excess fat. Blood sugar levels can drop as a result.


Keep a close watch on your blood sugar levels by recording any changes you realize. When you monitor what's happening with it, you may be able to recognize symptoms of low blood sugar and be able to treat them before they turn into much bigger problems! If your doctor has prescribed medication, use it as directed and ensure that you do not take any other medications or supplements that may affect your blood sugar levels. For example, if you have diabetes and take insulin or oral diabetes medications, tell your doctor if you are taking supplements such as ginseng, guarana, and ginkgo biloba to see if these can be safely mixed.

Updated on: 14-Feb-2023


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