The Somogyi Effect

As I’m writing my posts, I realise some of my readers don’t have Type 1 Diabetes. Nope, they are my committed friends and family - and God bless them all for sticking with me and dropping in to see what I’m up to from time-to-time. Hi, you Guys!

There are quite a few terms I’m throwing around on here, which won’t mean anything to you if you’re not hooked up to a pump or trying to work out why your morning blood sugar is sweeter than a Shanks & Big Foot Chocolate. That’s a 90’s reference, Mum. Oh, how I miss you songs of yesteryear.

Alexa, 90’s classics please.”

That’s better . . .

I’m a lover of language and what better than a Glossary Page for those times when I drop in an oddball term?

Here’s my first Glossary piece on the Somogyi Effect. Literally poured directly from my pre-coffee morning brain, so feel free to check Wiki as well for a more eloquent explanation.

The Somogyi Effect or the Somogyi Rebound

Somogyi can happen to PWD’s overnight. So can Werewolves or Indigestion. all are equally uncomfortable.

If someone with Diabetes Type 1 wakes up with a high morning blood sugar, there are two main things we consider. If we’ve not been eating Pizza and drinking Champagne the night before that is (Hello, Friday night)!

They are:

The Dawn Phenomenon and the Somogyi Rebound. I’ll talk about the Dawn Phenomenon in another post.

Somogyi happens when we have a low blood glucose level (usually pro-longed) during the night. The thinking is, these pro-longed low levels trigger our stress hormones and glucagon as a defensive (life-saving!) reaction.

Girl Jumping in a Field Life Quotes.png

Glucagon prompts the liver to convert stored glycogen into glucose - which is sweet stuff - so our body is effectively rescuing us. This results in higher morning levels because invariably the glucose converted is too much and without a fully functioning pancreas - there is no insulin to bring levels back down.

The way to tell if it is Somogyi or something else causing those highs? Lots of blood testing throughout the night or using a Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM) to show up when or if the lows happen.

Somogyi is caused by too much insulin in our system overnight. So, although a high would usually make people think - MUST NEED MORE INSULIN? - in this case NO! It’s the polar opposite. Less insulin is what will prevent a Somogyi Rebound.

As always - work with your healthcare professionals to correct this, do not go it alone or take anything you read here as advice for your diabetes.

Okay, now I really must dash for Coffee. Have a great day everyone.