While diabetes is a life-long metabolism disorder characterized by very high levels of glucose in the blood, prediabetes or borderline diabetes is the early stage in the development of type II diabetes.People suffering from this condition, also known as impaired glucose tolerance, have a blood glucose level that is higher than normal but not high enough for them to be treated for type II diabetes.
Prediabetes usually does not have any clear symptoms and it can therefore go unnoticed and untreated. Thus, it is important to understand whether you are pre-diabetic or borderline diabetic.If an individual's blood sugar level remains above the normal limit for an extended period, prediabetes can turn into type II diabetes.
Research conducted by the American Diabetes Association shows that even during the early stages in the development of type II diabetes or the prediabetes stage, an individual can suffer from long term damage to the body. The heart and circulatory system especially are vulnerable during this condition. Both diabetes and prediabetes can occur at any age and due precaution should be taken by people across age groups and ethnicities.
Many people remain asymptomatic and go unnoticed. It is becoming the major risk in our country. It was found that 1/3rd of Indian Population is unaware of the disease they have.
People may experience: (RED FLAGS)
- Whole body: excessive hunger, excessive thirst, fatigue, or low blood sugar.
- Urinary: excessive urination or frequent urination Weight: overweight or weight gain.
- Also common: diabetes, peripheral neuropathy, pot belly, or vision disorder.Factors Increasing the Risk of Diabetes - Know your Status.
- Genetic predisposition such as a family history of pre-diabetes or type II diabetes.
- Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome in women.
- Metabolic syndrome in men and women.
- Body Mass Index higher than 25.
- High blood pressure.
- Low HDL cholesterol, high triglycerides etc.
All adults above the age of 45 should consider getting tested for diabetes or prediabetes, especially if they are overweight or suffer from any of the other risk factors associated with diabetes.
Healthy individuals above the age of 45 that do not suffer from any of the risk factors associated with diabetes can consult their doctor before getting themselves tested.
Younger individuals also can get themselves tested in consultation with a doctor to ensure that the condition does not go unnoticed and gets timely treatment. Retesting can be done every 3 years in-case of normal blood glucose levels and should be carried out every year in-case of a prediabetes diagnosis.
PREVENTIVE MEASURES FOR PRE-DIABETICS:
- Maintaining a nutritious and balanced diet goes a long way in helping an individual keep the condition under control and prevent prediabtetes from developing into type II diabetes.
- A balanced diet should consist of an adequate amount of fiber, fresh fruits and vegetables, pulses, whole grains and good fats.
- Cooking oils high in MUFA or monounsaturated fats are recommended as these fatty acids control the development of cholesterol and also have a positive impact on diabetes.
- Food items like oats, papaya, apples, beans, broccoli, pulses with their husk and sprouts should also be consumed.
- Positive lifestyle changes such as following a regular exercise regime through the week and reducing alcohol consumption also help in keeping a check on the condition.
- To wrap it all up, do note that this condition is reversible and the development of type II diabetes can be stalled, it is imperative to treat it in time in consultation with a doctor.
ALWAYS ASK YOUR DOCTOR:
- Ask your doctor about blood glucose screening if you have any risk factors for prediabetes, such as:
- You're overweight, with a body mass index above 25.
- You're inactive.
- You're age 45 or older.
- You have a family history of type 2 diabetes.
- You're African-American, Hispanic, American Indian, Asian-American or a Pacific Islander.
- You developed gestational diabetes when you were pregnant or gave birth to a baby who weighed more than 9 pounds (4.1 kilograms).
- You have polycystic ovary syndrome — a condition characterized by irregular menstrual periods, excess hair growth and obesity.
- You have high blood pressure.
- Your high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol is below 35 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) (0.9 millimoles per liter, or mmol/L) or your triglyceride level is above 250 mg/dL (2.83 mmol/L).