Anyone who has symptoms of insulin resistance or diabetes should be tested for the disease. Some people will not have any symptoms but may have risk factors for diabetes and need to be tested. Testing allows you to change your diet and take out processed sugar laden food. You are more likely to have pre-diabetes or develop type 2 diabetes if you
- Are overweight or obese (particularly if you have a beer belly or visceral fat).
- Are "skinny fat" (skinny with no muscle definition or a bigger gut)
- Are aged 40 or older.
- Feel tired all the time.
- Feel hungry after eating.
- Have blurry vision
- Have a family history of diabetes.
- Have high blood pressure.
- Have a low level of HDL (good) cholesterol, or a high level of triglycerides
- Have a history of gestational diabetes or gave birth to a baby weighing 9 pounds or more.
- Are not physically active.
- Have a history of heart disease or stroke.
- Have depression or high levels of cortisol.
The A1C test measures your average blood glucose for the past 2 to 3 months. The advantages of being diagnosed this way are that you don't have to fast or drink anything. The A1C test is based on the attachment of glucose to hemoglobin, the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen. In the body, red blood cells are constantly forming and dying, but typically they live for about 3 months. Thus, the A1C test reflects the average of a person’s blood glucose levels over the past 3 months. The A1C test result is reported as a percentage. The higher the percentage, the higher a person’s blood glucose levels have been. A normal A1C level is below 5.7 percent.
- Diabetes is diagnosed at an A1C of greater than or equal to 6.5%
- Normal is less than 5.7%.
- Prediabetes is 5.7% to 6.4%
Fasting Blood Glucose Test
Fasting blood sugar tests involve drawing blood after you have not eaten overnight, usually for 8-12 hours. Results less than 100 mg/dL are normal. Results between 100 to 125 mg/dL are considered prediabetes. Results equal to or greater than 126 mg/dL after two tests are considered diagnostic for diabetes.