Diabetes Management: How Does Your Period Affect Blood Sugar

Health Education
4 min read
Diabetes Management: How Does Your Period Affect Blood Sugar

If you are a female with diabetes, you will have to manage your diabetes during menstruation. You may have concerns about how menstruation will affect your blood sugar. Read on to learn more about how your period can affect your blood sugar.

The Cycle

The menstrual cycle has an impact on insulin sensitivity. There are a lot of hormones involved, but the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone are the two main culprits responsible for the monthly period.

During the first phase, also called the follicular phase, of your menstrual cycle, you may be most insulin-sensitive and notice lower blood sugars. This has to do with the amount of blood the average woman loses during their cycle. As estrogen increases towards the end of this phase, you may notice your blood sugars start to rise.

It is important to know that each person’s body is different, and no advice or recommendation will fit each person the same way or at all. Knowing your body and tracking your cycles, along with your blood sugar, will assist in helping you and your doctor see patterns and changes.

Menstrual Cycle and Change of Diabetes Therapy

Knowing your cycle is important because it is the only way to adjust to the fluctuations in blood sugar. How you inject insulin may change how you record your blood sugar and your cycle. Asking your doctor about the best way to keep that record could save you a lot of backtracking and lost data.

Type 1 vs. Type 2

There is a difference in how to handle Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 in the wake of a menstrual cycle. For example, the fasting blood sugar before breakfast tends to cause a riff for most women with type 1 diabetes during the time before their period. If you have type 2 diabetes and do not take insulin, regular exercise can lower blood sugar, so it is important to keep active during this time of the month.

No Period Yet

Have all your friends started getting their periods? Are you wondering why you have not gotten yours yet? It may be your diabetes at work. If you have type 1 diabetes, it is normal for your first period to arrive later than your peers. 

No one knows exactly why this happens, but researchers are looking into it. All we know is there is a time lag between the start of a period for those with Type 1 diabetes compared to all other women. Unfortunately, there is also a chance of irregular periods compared to others and a chance for earlier onset menopause.

Learn More About Your Period and Blood Sugar

At BASS Medical Group, our doctors and specialists are here to support all your concerns related to diabetes. Get in touch with us today at (925) 350-4044 to find out how we can assist you.