Ask Joslin: When Should I Check My Blood Sugar?

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ask joslin featured imageThe answer depends on the medications you are taking, your current level of control and what information you are looking for.  For example, people with type 1 diabetes who take insulin four times a day need to check at least as many times.  People with type 2 who control their glucose levels with lifestyle or lifestyle and metformin may check only once, or perhaps twice, a day.

In general, people who take insulin at meals will need to check before each meal in order to appropriately dose their insulin, and at bedtime, while people who are controlled with oral medications or basal insulin will usually get all the information they need by checking twice per day at different times of the day.
Most people will end up checking their blood glucose at least sometimes in the morning before they eat; this is known as fasting blood glucose.  Fasting checks tell you how your control has been over the night; it can give you an indication if you have eaten the proper amount of carbohydrate at dinner and evening snack and tell you and your health care provider if your evening medications are working appropriately.

Pre-meal checks indicate how your control is in a “fasting state”.  Post-meal checks will let you know how your body responds to a specific carbohydrate and fat load. Post-meal checks are helpful for modifying your mealplan, if necessary.

Do you have a (non-medical) question you would like answered? Ask Joslin in the comments! Your question could be answered in a future blog, or in an upcoming video series. 

6 Responses to Ask Joslin: When Should I Check My Blood Sugar?

  1. TARA GONELLI says:

    I am a type 2 diabetic I am 52 years old and was diagnosed about 2 years ago, My problem is I cant get my sugar under control. I have been on Metformin, had to get off of it due to stomach issues. Then it was glyburdin, didnt work well. Now Iam on Insulin, First it was Lantas, Then it was NPH Insulin, Now Humalog 75/25. Humalog brings my sugar levels down. But down to fast and almost makes me crash. I hate that feeling, My AC1 levels are between 9.8 and 10.2. My fasting blood sugars are in the high 300’s sometimes in the 400’s. I am beside my self. I try to eat right, but my primary care dr, just keeps changing my insulin and uping my dosage. Its time to see a Diabetic Dr. Iam so depressed right now.

  2. chandra says:

    I am supposed to take Gyburide before meals in the morning and in the evening and metformin after the meals – both times. I am also taking Simvastatin and aspirin in the eving.

    How much time should there be between taking Glyburide and eating meals?

    Can Metformin, Statin and Aspirin taken together after meals?

    Thank you.

    • It is always best to discuss drug interactions with your physician or pharmacist. As far as timing your medication with meals goes, check back on the Joslin blog on Monday—there will be a post dealing with just this issue that you might find helpful!

  3. Ram says:

    Great Info, thanks for sharing. I have lot of diabetic people visit my website with similar questions.

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  4. Lucie says:

    Why viewers still use to read news papers when in
    this technological globe all is presented on net?

  5. Milley says:

    Where possible, it is well advised to test before and after certain meals to see how sugar levels respond. And I always did it before and after meals. If have diabetes, take an active role in your health. You can visit for your reference.

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