Prediabetes occurs when your blood sugar levels are elevated but not high enough to be considered diabetic. Essentially, it's a red flag that your metabolism is off-balance. People who have prediabetes are more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other health complications down the road.
Being diagnosed with prediabetes can understandably cause anxiety and trigger many questions. However, rather than view it as a disaster, consider it a second chance to make better decisions for your health.
As an experienced board-certified primary physician, Tiffany Jarrett, MD, at Monarch Health Services, Inc., in West Palm Beach, Florida, has helped many patients manage prediabetes and full-blown diabetes.
In this article, she discusses why getting an early diagnosis is crucial, and she gives tips that can help you manage your blood sugar levels.
Identifying prediabetes early gives you time to make changes that can significantly impact your health. According to studies, nearly 70% of people with prediabetes progress to full-blown Type 2 diabetes if no action is taken.
With Type 2 diabetes, the body’s cells don’t respond as they should to insulin. Insulin is a key hormone that helps move sugar that’s in the blood to the body's cells, where it’s used for energy. If the sugar doesn’t get into the cells, it accumulates in the blood, which can lead to a host of problems, such as heart and blood vessel damage, kidney damage, nerve damage, and more.
We typically diagnose prediabetes through blood tests that measure your fasting glucose or hemoglobin A1c levels. Understanding your numbers can help us map out an action plan for you.
Your food choices matter more than ever now. You should cut down on processed foods, which are often high in sugar and fat. These foods can cause rapid spikes in blood sugar levels.
Whole foods are your best friends. From fiber-rich vegetables and fruits to lean proteins, your diet should consist of a balanced mix of nutrients. Foods with a low glycemic index, such as quinoa, whole wheat, and lentils, are also excellent choices.
At Monarch Health Services, Inc., we can provide a tailored diet plan that suits your lifestyle. This could be as simple as replacing your daily soda with water or as comprehensive as a whole new meal plan.
You don't need to run a marathon to see benefits. Even simple exercises, such as walking for 30 minutes a day, can make a difference.
Consistent, moderate exercise is better than intense, irregular exercise. Start with what you can manage and then gradually increase the intensity.
The simple act of focusing on your breath can reduce stress, which is often linked to elevated blood sugar levels.
Being present in the moment can shift your perspective and reduce stress. This, in turn, can positively affect your blood sugar levels.
You might still require medication to manage your prediabetes despite your best efforts. Metformin is a commonly prescribed drug that helps control the amount of sugar in the blood.
Regular blood testing and monitoring are essential. Tracking your levels consistently allows us to make adjustments to your treatment plan as needed.
Prediabetes shouldn't be ignored. While the diagnosis may be scary, remember that it's a manageable condition that can often be reversed.
With our advanced diagnostic tools, personalized treatment plans, and a dedicated team of health care professionals, we can help you take meaningful steps to care for your health. To learn more, call 561-510-7859 or book an appointment online with Monarch Health Services, Inc., today.