ONE thing I didn't know about sleep

Uncategorized Nov 14, 2019

Happy World Diabetes Day!

Today is World Diabetes Day and November is Diabetes Awareness Month.

The one thing I was unaware of is the connection between sleep and type 2 (adult onset) diabetes.

Over the past few years, my routine blood tests consistently came back with HIGH HBA1C (blood glucose) - putting me in the pre-diabetes zone. Doctor's orders: healthy diet and regular exercise, like preaching to the converted.

Not one health professional ever asked me about my sleep hygiene.

I was always a night owl who functioned well, I thought, on less than 6 hours a night of sleep. I don't drink any caffeinated beverages. No coffee, soda, black or green tea. It was all natural energy that kept me going and going. Until...

Last fall 2018 when I was diagnosed with sleep apnea.

I know what you’re thinking: What? you’re not overweight or a man! Did you know that the odds of experiencing sleep apnea increase in women before and after menopause?

Sleep apnea is now recognized as a major contributor to the development of diabetes.

Chronic sleep deprivation is often overlooked but also significant risk factor for type 2 diabetes. Sleeping between 4.5 - 6 hours a night reduces insulin sensitivity and blood sugar control.

If sleep loss lasts only a few days, these effects can be reversed and insulin levels can improve with two full nights of sleep - at 10 hours per night. It's best to get 7-9 hours a night of sleep to prevent type 2 diabetes (heart disease too) and function optimally at work.

Pre-diabetes can be reversed when treated with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP, a common treatment for sleep apnea).

Around the time of my sleep apnea diagnosis, my doctor advised me to start on Metformin, an oral medicine for type 2 diabetes. Instead, I wrote my own prescription for Vitamin ZZZ: Use a CPAP. Sleep more. Sleep better.

The result? Within 3 months, my blood glucose levels dropped significantly and I am no longer pre-diabetic. AND the "brain fog" I experienced for years has finally lifted :)

Here are 3 steps to celebrate World Diabetes Day and Diabetes Awareness Month:

1. Try to get an extra 30 minutes more of sleep each night.

2. Click here to grab my DESKERCISES FOR BUSY PEOPLE tip sheet that includes 6 strength training exercises to do, in work attire, at your desk at work.

FYI, strength training improves insulin sensitivity, builds muscle mass which stores glucose more effectively, and helps regulate blood sugar even when you're at rest.

3. Click here to grab my healthy eating tip sheet BUILD-A-PLATE. 6 STEPS TO ORGANIZING EACH MEAL.

I hope you enjoy and use these tip sheets for self-care and diabetes prevention and/or management.

Be well and sleep well,


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