You thought you had a urinary problem because you kept feeling thirsty and needed to use the loo constantly, so it came as quite a shock when your doc diagnosed you with prediabetes. Your mum has diabetes so you have some idea of what it is, but you had never even heard of prediabetes until now. So, what exactly does prediabetes mean?
What Is Prediabetes?
“A fasting blood sugar level between 100 and 125 mg/dL is considered prediabetes”
Prediabetes or borderline diabetes is when your blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but have not yet reached the level where it can be considered diabetes. Think of prediabetes as a warning sign – an indication that if you don’t make the required changes to your lifestyle, you are likely to develop diabetes. If you have a fasting blood sugar level between 100 and 125 mg/dL, you are prediabetic, while blood sugar levels of 126 mg/dL or higher indicates diabetes.
How To Prevent Prediabetes From Turning Into Diabetes
“Lifestyle changes can reduce your risk of developing diabetes by as much as 58% so there’s no need for you to despair”
If one or both of your parents have diabetes, you are at a higher risk of getting prediabetes as well as diabetes. If you are overweight or obese and not physically active or if you have PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) you have a higher chance of developing blood sugar problems. However, lifestyle changes can reduce your risk of developing diabetes by as much as 58% so there’s no need to despair.
“If you can lose 5-10 percent of your body weight, you will lower your risk of getting diabetes by over 55%”
If you are overweight with a BMI that is over 25, you need to hit the gym now! All that belly fat you’re carrying around doesn’t just ruin your figure, the extra fat cells also cause your body to become more resistant to insulin. Since insulin is required for the absorption of sugar by the body, insulin resistance results in higher blood sugar levels. Research shows that if you can lose 5-10 percent of your body weight, you will lower your risk of getting diabetes by over 55%.
Increase Your Fiber Intake
“While both men and women benefit from a diet high in grain fiber, men have a higher diabetes reduction rate of 20%”
A diet high in cereal fiber has been linked to a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. This is because cereals and whole grains have a high soluble fiber content, which helps to slow down the rate at which your body breaks down carbs – this helps to control and stabilize blood sugar levels. While prediabetic men and women benefit from a diet high in grain fiber, men have a higher diabetes reduction rate of 20%.
“A regular 750ml bottle of coke contains about 16 teaspoons of sugar, which causes a quick spike in blood sugar levels”
Colas are about the worst thing for your blood sugar levels and so you should make your peace with giving them up altogether. Colas are extremely high in sugar – a regular 750ml bottle of coke contains about 16 teaspoons of sugar! What’s worse is that these sugars are quickly digested and so drinking coke will cause a sudden spike in your blood sugar levels. Coke does some serious damage to your entire body, so giving it up might just be one of the best decisions of your life!
“People who are moderately physically active for 150 minutes a week can lower their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 26%”
You’ve enjoyed your sloth lifestyle for years and now it’s time to get moving! Inactivity is linked to an increased risk of diabetes even in people who don’t have prediabetes, so you need to put on your running shoes. Research shows that people who are moderately physically active for 150 minutes a week (that’s just 30 mins for 5 days a week) lower their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 26%. Exercising more than that will reduce your risk of diabetes even further… so, what are you waiting for?
“Smoking increases the risk of diabetes by as much as 40%”
People with prediabetes who smoke are more likely to have trouble with their insulin levels and are therefore more likely to develop diabetes. Smoking increases the risk of diabetes by as much as 40%, so now would be a good time to quit cold turkey! There are several ways in which you can quit smoking, so choose the method that suits you best.
Being told that you have a condition that is incurable can be devastating. However, you need to focus on the positives – there is a lot that you can do to control this condition. The good news is that if you make all these changes to your life, it is likely that you will not get diabetes and you will actually have a healthier and happier lifestyle.
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