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Can type 2 diabetes be prevented? By Zainab Al-Obosi, MD
April 10, 2015
Diabetes can be prevented in the prediabetes stage.
What is prediabetes?
Prediabetes is a term used to when a patient is diagnosed with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT). Blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be considered diabetes. Patients may also have a glycated hemoglobin (A1C) level of 5.7 to 6.4 percent.
What is glycated hemoglobin (A1C)?
Glycated hemoglobin is the range of blood sugar over a three month period of time. This test can be easily done at Madison Health Primary Care and is not affected by what the patient ate that day.
How is type 2 diabetes prevented?
Studies show that people who are at risk can prevent type 2 diabetes by losing weight (if they are overweight), being active, improving the way they eat and taking certain medicines such as metformin.
What should I do if I have prediabetes?
If you have prediabetes, make lifestyle changes to reduce the chance that you will get full-blown diabetes. Here are a few suggestions:
· Lose weight – Losing 5 to 10 percent of your body weight can lower your risk. For example, if you weigh 200 pounds, your target weight loss would be between 10 and 20 pounds.
· Eat right – Choose a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products, but low in meats, sweets and refined grains. Stay away from sweet drinks, like soda and juice.
· Be active for 30 minutes a day – You don’t have to go to the gym or break a sweat to be considered active. Walking, gardening and dancing are all healthy activities.
· Quit smoking – Always remember that you are not on your own. We as providers can help you quit smoking. Many tools are available including nicotine patches, gum, medication and even therapy sessions.
The last thing to remember that is that everyone can improve their health and quality of life. Summer is just around the corner so take advantage of the warm weather, go outside and enjoy what nature has to offer.
Dr. Zainab Al-Obosi is a family physician at Madison Health Primary Care of London. To make an appointment, please call 740-845-7500. The practice is currently accepting new patients, including adults and children.
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