"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Prediabetes: A window of opportunity

Diabetes gets quite a lot of attention as of late, and for good reason: It can result in serious health complications similar to heart attack, kidney failure, amputations, blindness, and early death. But its precursor, aptly named prediabetes, doesn't get nearly as much airtime, despite affecting thrice as many individuals.

Unlike diabetes, prediabetes is “largely silent” and typically doesn't produce obvious symptoms that may alert us to its presence, says Dr. Romeo. But subtle signs often appear that shouldn't be ignored, offering a worthwhile window into stopping and stopping spikes in blood sugar levels.

Risk aspects and indicators

The same aspects that contribute to the event of diabetes—obese or obesity, inactivity, and family history—increase the danger of prediabetes. Paying attention to them, together with any persistent fatigue, should warn you that you could be in danger, Dr. Romeo says.

Also note should you're getting more infections — especially vaginal yeast infections. This can occur in women with prediabetes whose blood sugar spikes after meals—perhaps several times a day—but whose fasting glucose levels remain inside the traditional range (“three types of blood sugar tests (see). “Their reactions to food generally can't be categorized,” says Dr. Romeo.

After eating a big meal, some individuals with diabetes also experience frequent urination or blurred vision. These symptoms are also related to a short lived increase in blood sugar levels. They also show symptoms of full-blown diabetes, but on a smaller scale.

“While we like to categorize things into buckets, the truth is that diabetes and type 2 diabetes are often on a continuum—it's the same process in different stages,” says Dr. Romeo. . “Sometimes people are on the brink, so they feel some symptoms, even if they don't have type 2 diabetes, according to the book.”

Three Types of Blood Sugar Tests

Screening for prediabetes and diabetes relies on tests that measure blood glucose (sugar) levels. Get tested every two to a few years in case your previous results are normal and your risk aspects haven't modified, says Dr. Giulio Romeo, associate medical director of the adult diabetes section at Joslin Diabetes Center.

All three tests can show blood sugar levels. Ask your doctor which one — or a mix — is smart for you.

Fasting blood glucose. You stop eating eight or more hours before the test, which shows how well your body can process blood sugar overnight. A fasting blood sugar level of 99 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or less is taken into account normal, 100 to 125 mg/dL indicates prediabetes, and 126 mg/dL or more diabetes. indicates the

A1c It shows your average blood sugar level over the past two or three months. An A1c measurement below 5.7% is taken into account normal, 5.7% to six.4% indicates prediabetes, and 6.5% or higher indicates diabetes.

Glucose tolerance test. The test, done after an overnight fast, involves taking several blood samples before and after you drink a sugary liquid. For blood sugar measurements two hours after drinking liquids, a level of 140 mg/dL or less is taken into account normal, 141 to 199 mg/dL indicates prediabetes, and 200 mg/dL or more Indicates diabetes. A variation of this test is used to diagnose gestational diabetes.

Frequent movement is vital.

Frequent movement, specifically, is vital in stopping the issue. A brand new study published online Dec. 2, 2022, by Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism suggests that ladies who take more steps per day have a lower risk of developing diabetes. Researchers analyzed diabetes rates with wearable fitness device data from 5,677 people (75% women). Participants who averaged 10,700 steps per day at the beginning of the study were 44 percent less more likely to develop diabetes over the subsequent 4 years than those that averaged just 6,000 steps per day.

“Regular exercise has a profound effect on blood sugar,” says Grinblatas. “The recommendation for 30 minutes of exercise at least five days a week can be broken down into 10-minute increments and includes things like walking, yard work and dancing. Any form of exercise is good for our body and mind. Good for that.”

And exercise pays off in additional ways than simply a shrinking waistline for people vulnerable to diabetes. “Exercise alone often doesn't lead to weight loss, but it has important benefits that can't be measured on a scale — not just in terms of preventing the progression of diabetes, but also for your heart, mood,” says Dr. Romeo. , and plenty of elements of overall health should not captured by changes in your weight.”

Along with lifestyle changes, the drug metformin can enhance diabetes prevention efforts for some individuals with obesity. Metformin lowers blood sugar levels, the best way the body moves sugar from the blood into muscle and other tissue cells, where it's used as fuel. Research shows that metformin reduces the prospect of prediabetes progressing to diabetes by a couple of third, Dr. Romeo says, although lifestyle interventions work even higher — cutting the prospect of progressing to about 60 percent. Reduces

“For some people, the focus may not be on weight loss, but on how you should exercise at whatever level – not as a sprint but as something to be done. You can add to your routine over the years,” he says.

Diet and diabetes: It's complicated.

Some people consider that sugary foods—or foods containing processed sugar—can provide them diabetes. But it's not that easy, says Emma Samuels Grunblatas, a registered dietitian at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

Type 2 diabetes results from a mix of two processes. First, the body becomes immune to the hormone insulin and can't properly use it to move glucose (sugar) from the blood into the cells. In turn, the pancreas can't sustain with producing as much insulin. But someone without diabetes who eats a cookie or a bit of cake shouldn't have an issue, because their pancreas is functioning normally and might handle the job.

Grinblatas says that a lot of her diabetes patients “have been led to believe that sugar is something they can't have. But it's not,” she says. “Nothing is inherently bad. It's all about balance.”

In fact, glucose is an energy source that our body needs. While it is best to check food labels for sugar content, Grünblatas says it's just as vital to watch carbohydrate consumption — which may also cause blood glucose spikes — should you're diagnosed with diabetes. I'm concerned.

A brand new study shows that a low-carb eating regimen can quickly return A1c levels (a measure of blood sugar over the past several months) to a healthy range. Published online on October 26, 2022. JAMA Network Open.The study analyzed 150 older adults (75% women) with untreated diabetes or less severe diabetes over six months, randomly assigning half to a low-carbohydrate eating regimen and frequent dietary counseling and the opposite to were assigned to their usual eating regimen.

“Many of my patients work hard to lower their sugar intake but still have a high carb load,” she says. “If you're eating a bagel or breakfast bar in the morning, try an egg, unsweetened yogurt, or old-fashioned oatmeal and add some fruit or chopped nuts. Carbohydrates, healthy fats and A good balance of protein slows down digestion and helps people feel full.”

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