Before being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, most people develop “prediabetes,” a serious medical condition in which blood glucose or blood sugar level is higher than normal. People with prediabetes often have no signs or clear symptoms, or don’t recognize them because they develop slowly over a period of time. A blood test such as a oral glucose tolerance test, fasting blood sugar test, or hemoglobin A1c test is required to diagnose prediabetes.
RISK OF DEVELOPING PREDIABETES
If you are overweight and age 45 or older – You should be checked for prediabetes during your next routine medical office visit.
If your weight is normal and you are over age 45 – You should ask your doctor during a routine office visit if testing is appropriate.
If you are under age 45 and overweight – Your doctor should recommend testing if you have any other higher risk factors for diabetes, including:
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Low HDL cholesterol and high triglycerides
- History of gestational diabetes or delivering a baby weighing 9 pounds or more
- Family history of diabetes
- History of a metabolic syndrome
- Belonging to an ethnic or minority group at high risk for diabetes, including African-Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, or Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders
SCREENING AND DIAGNOSIS
Screening guidelines for prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes are as follows:
- Fasting glucose level of 100 mg/dl or lower is considered normal.
- Fasting glucose level elevated to 100 – 125 mg/dl indicates prediabetes.
- Fasting glucose level elevated to 126 mg/dl or higher indicates diabetes.
If your blood sugar levels are in the normal range, follow-up tests should occur every three years. If your results indicate prediabetes, you should be re-tested every one to two years after your diagnosis.
PREVENTION AND TREATMENT
If diagnosed with prediabetes, you can and should do something about it. Studies show that people with this condition can reverse prediabetes, preventing diabetes or delay the development of Type 2 diabetes through lifestyle changes, including:
- Moderate weight loss (reducing total body weight by 7 percent)
- Regular physical activity (30 minutes a day, 5 days a week)
- Diet changes like reducing sugary beverages and eating more whole grains
For some people with prediabetes, early enough intervention can actually return elevated blood glucose levels to the normal range. Many patients find help through a diabetes prevention program.
REVERSING DIABETES WITH TSHBP
Should your prediabetes develop into type 2 diabetes, the TSHBP has partnered with Virta to help. Virta is a medically supervised, research-backed treatment to reverse type 2 diabetes through nutritional ketosis without calorie-counting, surgery or more medication. The Virta treatment includes:
- Medical Supervision
- Personal, 1-on-1 Health Coach
- Tools for Biomarker Feedback
- Mobile and Desktop App
- On-Demand Resources
- Private Virta Community