6 Surprising Causes of Blood Sugar Spike

For those navigating diabetes, maintaining steady blood sugar levels is a daily challenge. Beyond the usual suspects like sugary foods or missing insulin doses, there are also surprising causes of blood sugar spikes.

Understanding these can help you manage your blood sugar levels more effectively. Let’s talk about six surprising causes of blood sugar spikes.

1. Lack of Sleep

Firstly, let’s start with an often-overlooked cause – lack of sleep. Importantly, lack of proper rest can disrupt the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar, leading to higher levels upon waking.

Therefore, consistently getting a good night’s sleep is vital for maintaining stable blood sugar levels.

2. Too Much Stress

Yes, stress, either physical or emotional, can trigger a spike in blood sugar.

This happens because your body releases hormones like cortisol in response to stress, which can increase blood sugar levels. Hence, managing stress is essential to keeping blood sugar levels in check.

3. Dehydration

Dehydration can surprisingly cause blood sugar to rise. When you’re dehydrated, the concentration of sugar in your blood can increase, causing a spike.

Thus, staying properly hydrated is crucial for maintaining normal blood sugar levels.

4. Certain Medications

Certain medications can raise blood sugar levels. For instance, drugs like steroids, beta-blockers, and certain diuretics are known to increase blood sugar.

If you’ve recently started a new medication and have noticed a spike, it’s advisable to consult with your healthcare provider.

5. Skipping Meals

Conversely, while it may seem counterintuitive, skipping meals can actually cause your blood sugar to spike, according to multiple studies.

This is because your body begins to crave energy, and in response, it releases glucose, leading to elevated blood sugar levels. Regular, balanced meals are key to preventing these spikes.

6. Illness or Infection

Meanwhile, any illness or infection can cause your blood sugar levels to spike, even a minor cold. Because your body produces stress hormones to fight the illness, this can lead to higher blood sugar levels.

Thus, it’s important to monitor your blood sugar levels more frequently when you’re sick.


In conclusion, understanding these surprising causes can help you better manage your blood sugar levels. It’s recommended that you work closely with your healthcare provider to pinpoint any unexpected factors affecting your blood sugar. After all, knowledge is power when it comes to managing diabetes effectively.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a blood sugar spike?

A blood sugar spike occurs when your blood glucose level increases significantly for a brief period. For individuals managing diabetes, these sudden spikes can lead to complications if they occur frequently and are not managed effectively.

Can stress cause a blood sugar spike?

Yes, stress can indeed lead to a blood sugar spike. Stress triggers the release of various hormones in your body, which can stimulate your liver to produce more glucose, thereby raising your blood sugar levels.

Why does lack of sleep affect blood sugar levels?

Lack of sleep affects the body’s sensitivity to insulin, the hormone that allows cells to use and store sugar. When your body is insulin-resistant due to lack of sleep, it can cause blood sugar to rise, leading to a spike.

How can skipping meals lead to a blood sugar spike?

When you skip a meal, your body goes into a sort of ‘starvation mode.’ In response, your liver starts releasing more glucose to provide energy for the body.

This extra glucose can lead to an increase in your blood sugar levels, resulting in a spike. Therefore, eating regular meals is important in managing blood sugar levels.

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