Thursday, June 30, 2016

Know the Facts about Prediabetes

The Mayo Clinic defines prediabetes as the condition where a person’s “blood sugar level is higher than normal but not yet high enough to be classified as type 2 diabetes.”  They go on to say that without intervention, a person is in danger of becoming diabetic in 10 years or less; however, there are steps you can take to help prevent this from happening.   

While it is not known exactly what causes prediabetes, we do know that family history and genetics play a significant role.  The Mayo Clinic explains that the genetic link has been confirmed by research with the discovery of some insulin resistant genes.  In addition studies show that excess fat; especially abdominal fat as well as inactivity are “important factors in the development of prediabetes.”

The job of glucose (sugar) in our bodies is to fuel the cells that make up our muscles and other tissues.  We get glucose from any food we eat that has carbohydrates and not just from sweets.  As our food is digested, glucose enters the bloodstream, and “with the help of insulin, it enters the body's cells where it is utilized as a source of energy.”   For someone who has prediabetes, it means they have stopped processing glucose properly, and it is building up in their bloodstream, no longer providing fuel for their cells.

To help prevent prediabetes from becoming type 2 diabetes, you need to make changes in your lifestyle.  A good way to start trying to normalize your blood sugar levels is to get plenty of physical exercise, make healthier food choices, and lose weight if you carry a lot of excess body fat.   

This post is intended for informational purposes only.  Please contact your health care provider with any questions or concerns you have regarding your health.

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