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Can a deep sleep get you out of your pre-diabetic rut?

If you're someone who's over the age of 40 or under 40, and overweight, who stays up late, or sacrifices sleep for something else, remember the toll that chronic sleep deprivation can take on your sugar levels. Join us as we share 2 simple ways to balance your sugar levels and set it right.
a person holding a blood sugar meter

Are you a social jet lagger?

Imagine it’s been a busy work week. The four-day workweek culture has not yet arrived at your workplace. As a result, you find yourself working throughout the day without a consistent daytime routine. Your daily sleep pattern has become unpredictable as well. One day, you might stay up until 2 a.m., then try to recover the next day, and end up having to wake up very early the following day.

This roller coaster way of life is a form of social jet lag, where you don’t get enough sleep during the week and attempt to compensate by sleeping more on the weekends. As you continue to live this way, month after month, you find yourself always thirsty and making more trips to the toilet than usual. Even though you eat regularly, you are frequently hungry.

Where does this slippery slope of social jet lag take you?

Insulin resistance, prediabetes, and even diabetes are just a few of the issues social jet lag can cause. For instance, a study on sleep restriction revealed that healthy people who had sleep time decreased from 8 to 4 hours each night metabolized glucose more slowly than those who were given 12 hours to sleep. Your general health may be harmed as well by this decline in insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance. The hormones that control your appetite and metabolism might fall out of balance when you don’t get enough sleep, causing you to overeat and gain weight.

Approximately 80% of those who have prediabetes are unaware of their disease. Could you be one of them?

Don’t be deceived by the word “pre”. If your blood sugar levels are higher than average but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetic, then you’re prediabetic. You have a higher risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke if you have prediabetes. A study published in the journal Sleep found that even staying up late on a single night to binge-watch your favorite TV show or to browse social media can lead to increased insulin resistance.

One simple way to assess your blood sugar from time to time is the HbA1c test. This test can evaluate your 3-month blood sugar average and is one of the tests used often to diagnose prediabetes and diabetes. You must meet and maintain your personal A1C goal because higher A1C levels are associated with diabetic complications.

Compare prediabetes to a fork in your path!

prediabetic woman standing at a cross road wondering what to do

If you ignore it, your risk of acquiring type 2 diabetes rises. Your risk decreases if you lose a modest amount of weight and engage in regular physical activity. 5% to 7% of body weight, or 10 to 14 pounds for a 200-pound person, is what we call a modest weight loss.

Even if you have a lot to boast about, being modest and not feeling the need to brag to others is not enough. You must also maintain a modest body weight. At least 150 minutes of brisk walking must be part of your daily routine. You could rake your garden, shovel snow off your walkway, or mop your house. You only need to devote 30 minutes every day, five days a week to an activity, whether it’s a hobby or an exercise.

Insulin resistance is not just a fancy word you hear everywhere nowadays, it’s much more!

Consider a city where everyone has access to energy thanks to a reliable power supply. The power company uses power lines to deliver electricity to the city, acting as a path for it to travel to each residence and establishment. Imagine that one day the power lines start to malfunction and lose their ability to effectively transmit electricity. Even though the power company has enough electricity, the city will still experience blackouts and power shortages.

prediabetic woman eating a donut and happy

Similarly, insulin resistance can develop when your body’s cells start to reject the hormone insulin, which serves as a channel for glucose to enter your cells and fuel them. Even if your pancreas produces enough insulin, high blood sugar levels will still exist. Insulin won’t be used by your cells as effectively, and glucose from your food will stay in your bloodstream longer. Let’s take the example of eating a delicious donut for breakfast. To help your cells absorb glucose and use it as fuel, your pancreas releases insulin. Yet if your cells are insulin resistant, they will not respond to insulin, and the glucose will remain in your blood, ending in high blood sugar levels.

A study found that those who did yoga before bed for 8 weeks experienced much better eating and sleeping habits, as well as lower levels of worry and melancholy.

So, while it may seem tempting to stay up late binge-watching your favorite TV show or scrolling through social media, it’s important to prioritize getting enough sleep each night. Do these yoga poses before bed, be sure to turn off all electronics, and establish a consistent bedtime.

Tiger Tucks

a person in a leotard

Begin on all fours. Exhale as you scoop your right knee toward your nose. Inhale as you drop your belly towards the mat while lowering your right knee to the floor. Repeat the same on the left side.

Extended Child’s Pose

a person stretching on a mat

Sit with your knees tucked in and your heel close to your buttocks. Bend forward from the waist and place your chest between your thighs. Put your chin or forehead on the ground. Extend your arms as far forward as possible until you feel a stretch in your rib cage.

Butterfly Stretch

a person doing Butterfly Stretch

Pull your heel up towards your butt while sitting upright. Make a butterfly-like shape with your legs by opening up your knees. As you inhale, open your shoulders and maintain a long spine. If this is too difficult, walk your arms forward and plant your fingertips further away from your torso.

Caterpillar Stretch

a person doing Caterpillar Stretch

Vinyasa between low cobra and caterpillar, inhaling into low cobra and exhaling into a caterpillar. Inhale, and lift your tailbone toward the ceiling. Maintain the closest possible angle between your elbow and body. When you exhale, move your butt backward like a caterpillar would.

Easy Pose Spine Stretch

a person doing Easy Pose Spine Stretch

Sit on the floor, with your legs crossed. After taking a deep breath, softly lean backward while opening your chest by using your knees to propel yourself. Exhale and bend forward from the waist while extending your arms forward. This seated forward fold and backward stretch should be alternated.

Stag Locust Pose

a person doing Stag Locust Pose

Lie on your belly. Take a breath in and strike the cobra pose, widening your chest. Raise your right leg and balance it on your left sole as you exhale. Release the pose. Inhale to enter cobra pose, and this time as you exhale raise your left leg, supporting it with your right sole.

Reverse Plank

A person doing Reverse Plank

As you sit on the ground, extend your legs in front of you. Take a breath, and raise your butt off the ground while maintaining a relaxed neck. Your toes should be pointing forward as you keep your body in a long line. Hold for a count of 30. Exhale and then slowly place your butt back on the floor.

Easy Pose Forward Bend

A person doing Easy Pose Forward Bend

Sit on the floor and open up your knees and chest. Clasp your fingers together with thumbs separated and pointing out. Inhale and be present in the pose. Exhale and let go of your hands, stretch them forward, lean forward from the waist, and lower your forehead to the floor.

Side to Side Neck Rotation

A person doing Side to Side Neck Rotation

Sit with your legs crossed, eyes closed. Observe chinmaya mudra in both hands. Form a circle with the tips of your thumb and forefinger. Curl the rest of your fingers into your palms. Place your palms on your upper thighs. The palms may be facing up or down. Inhale and be present in the pose. Exhale and slowly move your chin to the right. Inhale deeply and bring your chin forward. Exhale and move your chin to the left.

Here’s a deep shavasana audio relaxation to help you unwind and sleep like a baby at the end of the day.

Talk to your doctor about taking further steps to improve your health and lower your risk of developing type 2 diabetes if, despite getting a good night’s sleep and engaging in vigorous activity for 30 to 60 minutes each day, your HbA1c doesn’t show any signs of improvement.

FAQ: Can a deep sleep get you out of your pre-diabetic rut?

What is social jet lag, and how does it affect your sugar levels?

 Inconsistency in sleep patterns and routines results in social jet lag. It is a factor of staying up late or sacrificing sleep for other activities. This disruption in your sleep schedule can have a detrimental impact on your sugar levels. When you don’t get enough sleep, your body’s ability to metabolize glucose slows down, leading to imbalances in sugar levels.

Key information:

  • Social jet lag disrupts sleep patterns and routines.
  • Lack of sleep can impair glucose metabolism.
  • Imbalances in sugar levels can occur as a result.

What are the risks of pre-diabetes and how does inadequate sleep contribute to it?

 A condition where blood sugar levels are higher than average but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes is termed pre-diabetes. It poses a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Inadequate sleep, even just a single night of staying up late, can increase insulin resistance, a precursor to prediabetes.

Key information:

  • Prediabetes increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.
  • Inadequate sleep can lead to insulin resistance.
  • Insulin resistance is a key factor in the development of prediabetes.

How does losing weight and regular physical activity help in managing pre-diabetes?

Physical activity typically helps in the agility and mindsets of the individual. It lowers the chances of diabetes significantly. Usually, losing a modest amount of weight helps in better management of prediabetes. These lifestyle changes contribute to improved insulin sensitivity and glucose control.

Key information:

  • Losing 5% to 7% of body weight reduces the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • Regular physical activity improves insulin sensitivity.
  • Lifestyle changes promote better glucose control.

What is insulin resistance, and how does it affect blood sugar levels?

Insulin resistance occurs when your body’s cells become less responsive to insulin, the hormone responsible for allowing glucose into the cells to be used as fuel. Even if your pancreas produces enough insulin, your cells won’t utilize it effectively, resulting in elevated blood sugar levels.

Key information:

  • Insulin resistance hinders the cells’ response to insulin.
  • Elevated blood sugar levels can occur despite sufficient insulin production.
  • Glucose remains in the bloodstream instead of being absorbed by cells.

Can yoga before bed improve sleep quality and eating habits?

Before sleeping, assuming it’s in the night, engaging in yoga does seem to have some genuine effects of positivity. This is especially true for the case of sleep quality, eating habits, and melancholy,  Studies have indicated that practicing yoga before bedtime for eight weeks can lead to better sleep patterns, reduced worry and melancholy, and potentially improved eating habits.

Key information:

  • Yoga before bed can improve sleep quality.
  • Regular yoga practice may contribute to better eating habits.
  • Yoga has a positive impact on overall well-being.


In conclusion, maintaining a healthy sleep routine and addressing sleep deprivation is crucial in managing prediabetes and reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Social jet lag and inadequate sleep can lead to imbalances in sugar levels, insulin resistance, and other health complications. Incorporating lifestyle changes such as losing weight, engaging in regular physical activity, and practicing yoga can further support the management of prediabetes and improve overall well-being.

Remember to consult with your doctor for personalized advice and guidance on managing your health and lowering the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

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