Diabetes distress, including emotional stress and depression, is associated with a higher risk of binge eating in people with type 1 diabetes, and has been shown to negatively affect blood sugar control.

More about the effects of diabetes distress on eating and blood sugar

Diabetes distress is a condition specific to people living with type 1 diabetes. It is the negative emotions, guilt and frustration about having diabetes that people with type 1 diabetes frequently report. Researchers are studying its relationship to binge eating (eating a lot of food in a short time) and poor control over blood sugar. Diabetes distress places people with type 1 diabetes at risk for binge eating and a cycle of negative emotions and high blood sugar.

In this study of 83 people with type 1 diabetes, nearly half reported binge eating during a 3-day period. Of these participants, nearly all of them (93%) reported feelings of guilt, frustration, and distress before eating. Additionally, blood glucose tested 2 hours after a meal in participants who reported binge eating was higher than in participants who did not report binge eating.

The researchers concluded that diabetes distress increases the risk of binge eating and negatively affects blood sugar control in people with type 1 diabetes. The findings of this study suggest that helping people cope with negative emotions and distress related to diabetes may help reduce the risk of eating disorders in this population and help people achieve control their blood sugar. Latinos/Hispanics with type 1 diabetes may experience more stress due to additional environmental and cultural factors. It is important for people with type 1 diabetes to talk about their problems with someone they trust because sharing experiences with loved ones can increase support from family and help decrease emotional stress.

[Abstract Link]

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