Obesity, lack of exercise, and excess carbohydrate consumption are the leading causes of prediabetes.
This stealth condition has no symptoms and is present long before a diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes. Fasting blood sugar level is higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed with diabetes (101 mg/dl to 125 mg/dl).
Carbohydrate digestion is mildly abnormal but other symptoms indicating diabetes are absent. The development of Type 2 diabetes is expected with prediabetes. Many people destined to develop Type 2 diabetes (covered next) spend many years in a state of prediabetes.
Most prediabetic people are undiagnosed and unaware of their condition. They can easily prevent progression to Type 2 diabetes and reverse their blood sugar levels to normal with lifestyle changes including exercise, a diabetes diet, and weight loss. Early diagnosis through BLOOD SUGAR SELF-TESTING or doctor testing could halt the epidemic progression to Type 2 Diabetes.
About 86 million people in the U.S. over age 20 have prediabetes. Reversing it can prevent more serious health problems later on. These range from Type 2 diabetes to problems with your heart, blood vessels, eyes, kidneys, and limbs. By the time of a diabetes diagnosis, many of these serious and life-threatening problems have already taken hold.
Prediabetes Warning Signs … You’re more likely to get prediabetes if you:
- Have a family history of Type 2 diabetes
- Are a mother who had gestational diabetes (pregnancy onset diabetes) or gave birth to a baby weighing more than 9 pounds
- Are a woman with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
- Are African-American, Native American, Asian-American, Hispanic, or Pacific Islander
- Are overweight or obese, especially around the middle (belly fat) … For some, even a small weight gain can trigger prediabetes or progression to Type 2 diabetes
- Have high triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol, and high LDL cholesterol, or total cholesterol over 300
- Don’t exercise
- Are 45 years or Older
- Eat a high carbohydrate diet
You should do BLOOD SUGAR SELF-TESTING at home or be tested by a doctor for prediabetes if you meet any of the criteria above and you:
- Had an abnormal blood sugar reading in the past
- Have heart disease
- Show signs of insulin resistance, which means the body produces insulin, but doesn’t respond to it like it should
How Is Prediabetes Diagnosed? … Your doctor can perform one of three different blood tests or you can self-test at home:
- Fasting Plasma Glucose Test: Measures your blood sugar after an 8-hour fast. If your blood sugar level is higher than normal but below diabetes diagnosis level (101 mg/dl to 125 mg/dl), you may have prediabetes.
- Oral Glucose Tolerance Test: Records your blood sugar after an 8-hour fast and again 2 hours after you have a very sweet drink. If your blood sugar is higher than normal 2 hours after the test, you may have prediabetes.
- Glycated Hemoglobin (HbA1C) Test: Looks at your average blood sugar for the past 2 to 3 months. It can be used to see if your diabetes is under control or to diagnose the disease.
Blood Sugar Self-testing at Home: To save medical expenses or to avoid the possibility of having diabetes or prediabetes showing on your medical records, go to the chapter BLOOD SUGAR SELF-TESTING
Treatment for prediabetes is without medication (lifestyle changes):
- Lose weight (losing 5% to 10% of your weight can make a huge difference)
- Exercise (choose a form or multiple forms of exercise you find enjoyable, so you will do it every day regardless of weather, like rebounding or dancing)
- Stop Smoking
- Get quality rest
- Reduce Stress
- Treat high blood pressure (hypertension) and high cholesterol by getting off hypertension and statin drugs … CLICK to go to the Chapter DANGEROUS STATIN DRUGS.