The dawn phenomenon can cause high blood sugar levels, especially in the morning before breakfast, in people who have diabetes.
The dawn phenomenon is a normal rise in blood sugar as a person's body prepares to wake up.
- In the early morning hours, hormones (growth hormone, cortisol, and catecholamines) cause the liver to release large amounts of sugar into the bloodstream. For most people, the body produces insulin to control the rise in blood sugar.
- If the body doesn't produce enough insulin, blood sugar levels can rise. This may cause high blood sugar in the morning (before eating).
If you have diabetes and your blood sugars are often high in the morning, talk to your doctor. Your doctor may need to adjust your medicines.
Current as of:
March 1, 2023
Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board:
E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Rhonda O'Brien MS, RD, CDE - Certified Diabetes Educator
Current as of: March 1, 2023
Medical Review:E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & Rhonda O'Brien MS, RD, CDE - Certified Diabetes Educator