Hydration - Blood Sugar Correlation

So if drinking water (in addition to insulin) helps to lower our blood sugars after/during a high, then it's Occam’s razor that being constantly hydrated and drinking water would keep our blood sugars in better range versus dehydrated, right? I would think so - and thus my curiosity on the topic.

I don't drink much water myself, of course which I now realize and just remembered this morning isn't such a great thing not only in terms of general health but also the CGMs (apparently, according to my doctors and CGM/pump trainers, the CGMs operate better when you're up on fluids). However, my A1c is doing great.

What is your guys’ A1c vs. water intake? I wonder if there's a correlation.


When Kathy is really high I really try to get her to drink lots of water.  She's only 9 so that isn't quite as easy.  I do think it makes sense in that it is one way to "flush" the sugar from your system.

Her last A1C was 6.1 a few weeks ago.


We've been told that the water after/during a high is to help with the keytones, not the sugars (though, that may help too).

You've hit the nail on the head, though, in that getting your water is healthy for everyone, not just people living with D and not just when you're high!

Beemer drinks a ton of water and crystal light, almost 2 litres a day total between the two (about 8 cups).


I try to drink at least 8 glasses of water a day, if not more. Drinking a couple glasses can drop my blood sugar pretty quickly, actually, so I'm careful not to drink too much on an empty stomach, or while I've got a lot of active insulin in my system.

What's crazy- when I first noticed this being an issue (after drinking a lot of ice water with dinner one night), I asked my diabetes educator about it. She said that shouldn't happen. When I talked to my endocrinologist about it though, he said it definitely could happen. (I think she works mostly with Type 2s.)

Oh, I also meant to say- it really is amazing how many things are affected by whether you're well hydrated or not. For example, I have cartilage piercings in my ears, and when they were healing, they hurt so much I couldn't sleep on my side if I wasn't well-hydrated. Crazy!

Water can in fact affect your blood sugars. Take case in point in terms of electrolyte fluctuations when drinking an overabundance of water:

"A woman was competing in a radio talk show to win an XBox last Xmas. The intent of the competition was to see how much water someone can guzzle without throwing up. Absolutely the worst thing you can do. Calls kept pouring into the station telling them to stop this competition for medical reasons and they didn't.

The woman, at age 30(something) died of cardiac arrest from an electrolyte imbalance. the water depleted her sodium in her blood and cause the infarct."

I'm not saying any of you are in danger, I was using the case to point out what water can indeed do to your BG's etc. And yes, water is key when spilling keytones, or even the fear of them when you are running high. Water is just darned good for ya ;)

The importance of water in hyperglycemia is simply a matter of concentration and osmolality. If the blood glucose concentration is high, water will be pulled from the cells to equalize concentration levels. The result is cellular dehydration. (Thus your brain tells you that you are thirsty.) So, you still need insulin or you may go into ketoacidosis.

As far as water and prevention of ketoacidosis,  ketoacidosis is usually accompanied by insulin deficiency, hyperglycemia, and dehydration. Particularly in type 1 diabetics the lack of insulin in the bloodstream prevents glucose absorption and can cause unchecked ketone body production (through fatty acid production) potentially leading to dangerous glucose and ketone levels in the blood. Hyperglycemia results in glucose overloading the nephron (kidney) and spilling into the urine. Dehydration results following the osmotic movement of water into urine, exacerbating the acidosis.

Does this make sense? Or is coming out like rasberries on my kids bellies? LOL

I know I should drink more water, but when I'm high, I drink a TON!

[quote user="Keely"]

I try to drink at least 8 glasses of water a day, if not more. Drinking a couple glasses can drop my blood sugar pretty quickly, actually, so I'm careful not to drink too much on an empty stomach, or while I've got a lot of active insulin in my system.


I had to watch a movie in school that that that8 cups of water a day isnt nessasary because you get most of it from food. w ho would have ever thought that was possible?

Yeah, eight glasses a day is excessive (assuming you are drinking a full cup of water per glass).  You get about 1/4 of the fluids you need through food so an average person needs about 1.5 L to meet their needs.  A good estimation is 1 ml of h20 per 1 kcal in your diet.  So if you eat 2,500 kcals per day, you may need approximately 2.5 L to stay fully hydrated.

But, remember that you get lots of h20 from soda, juice, and other beverages too.

And rmeadowsaprn, nice scientific response there!  It was a very good explanation... only thing is ketone body production is through fatty acid degradation, not production.  I think you had a typo up there.

I need to drink more water, too.  I usually only drink about 2 cups of coffee, a can of diet coke, and one beer at night.  ALL DIURETICS.  Yikes!

A1C - My last A1C was 6.8.  I've always been in the 6s except for right after diagnosis (was 13)...

Actually, depending on what else you're drinking, I don't think 8 glasses of water a day is excessive. In a study by the IOM, they recommend 9 glasses of fluids per day for women, and 12.5 for men (generally speaking). http://www.webmd.com/diet/guide/wonders-of-water

What I go by is drink half your body weight in ounces.

i just thought of science last year that would explain it. it might be confusing so ill do my best.

diluted: a weaker mix

concentrated: a stronger mix

this works as long as water you drink goes into your blood.

imagine blood cells as a drink mix. the more water you drink the more diluted the mix will be. that means a lower blood sugar. the less water you drink the more concentrated the mix will be.  if you dont uderstand still:

the more water the more spread out. =lower blood sugar

the less water the more close the blood cells aare.=the higher blood sugar.

this does not explain low blood sugars though.

Alright, everyone has gotten me simply too curious to let this one go. Now I'm really curious about whether or not there is a hydration-blood sugar correlation. For the past two days, I've been drinking all my water (half my body weight in ounces, as I posted earlier). In a few days, I will upload my blood sugars from the day (probably Saturday or Sunday), average them, and figure if they're lower than my blood sugars from a day where I've had no water. If anyone else wouold like to look at this and experiment with it themselves it'd be interesting to see more of the results (I don't see any obvious concerns to go along with this, but if you do upload your results/do so as well please make sure to keep aware).

My blood sugars from December 20th are as follows. I can pretty much guarantee I had close to no water that day, nor previous to this date, as I have only recently been focusing on remaining hydrated. I know, I test a bit much - but better safe than sorry :) In addition to this, I believe the clock on my meter is off a bit, so the times may vary from actual time of day these tests were taken:

1:41 am - 109, 2:08 am - 74, 2:24 am - 97, 5:59 am - 205, 9:06 am - 202, 11:35 am - 274, 7:17 pm - 95, 9:18 pm - 90
These are measured in mg/dL.
Also, I think it is safe to say the time on my meter is off as I am never this much of an active tester in the early AM hours, nor do I go from 11 am to 7 pm without testing.

AVERAGE: 143 (.25) mg/dL
My range is 80-120; keep posted and in a couple of days I will see if drinking water and remaining hydrated has caused my blood sugars to drop back in-range.


i need to drink more water, i dont drink alot, but my A1c's are good,  my last one was 5.6

Absolutely. Sorry about the typo!


I'm waiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiting.  ;-)

Okay, okay. I know it's been a while since I've updated this post (speaking of which, I still need to update my sensor locations one...), but here it goes.

Prossible errors during the trials: 1.) Over last weekend, my blood sugars ran higher due to a bit of a cold. I will post Sunday's results as they are the most normal, however these may have been affected by this. 2.) During the week, I haven't uploaded my bg's even though they've been pretty well in-range (107 at lunch yesterday!) due to a significant amount of change in physical activity between this week, and the time when my last blood sugars were posted. 3.) UPDATE: I may upload them this weekend, as physical activity will be back closer to what it was last time, although I think I'm coming down with a cold. Again. Har har, good timing, right? Riiiight. Anyway, I'll play it by ear and see if my bgs are too out there to be valid.

And now for the sugars :) Again, please take note that the times vary between what my meter reads and actual time.

IN mg/dL

January 4: 1:34 am - 140, 1:37 am - 145, 1:37 am - 128, 4:56 am - 132, 8:43 am - 208, 9:32 am - 258, 11:36 am - 263, 557 pm - 129, 9:12 pm - 229, 9:27 pm - 206, 11:36 pm - 225, 11:48 pm - 196 BLOOD SUGAR AVERAGE: 188.25

Hmm... maybe there is no correlation??

I have been drinking all my water for the past two weeks or so

Hey Alyssa.  I didn't assume you'd see a huge difference.  However, it isn't a bad idea to try to keep up with the hydration especially since it's so easy to become dehydrated if your sugars stay high for too long.  I need to drink more water myself (hey, I'll go get myself a glass now).

Anyway, looks like you have the mind of a researcher.  Keep up the science-mindedness, as it'll definitely help you out in college and your future career.