Stress is one major concern for diabetics. Being stressed about the condition will aggravate it. When a person is in a state of anxiety and stress, the body releases stress hormones into the blood. Stress hormones make the body release stored glucose and a diabetic patient may not produce enough insulin for the cells to absorb the extra glucose, causing the blood-sugar level to remain high or even further spike.
A study in 2013 of 7,500 middle-aged men in Sweden found a statistically significant relationship between stress and diabetes risk. It was found that men who reported long-term stress had a 45 percent higher risk of developing diabetes, compared to men who reported to have little, or only short-term, stress.
Further studies have found evidence that chronic stress can initiate changes in the immune system that may result in, or increase the likelihood of, the development of type 2 diabetes. Thus, people who suffer from work strain or emotional stress are more likely to develop diabetes than those with relatively lower stress levels.
Stress is an unavoidable part of modern life and can pose a major barrier to effective diabetes control. It is of utmost importance to reduce stress as there are wide-ranging positive effects from doing so, from lowering blood-sugar levels to promoting cardiovascular health.