Prediabetes is a condition in which your blood glucose (or sugar) levels are higher than normal, but not high enough for a diagnosis of diabetes. If untreated, many people who have prediabetes will develop type 2 diabetes within 10 years. However, the good news is that you can delay or prevent diabetes through modest weight loss and becoming more physically active. In fact, the Diabetes Prevention Program study showed that if you have prediabetes, you can lower your risk of developing diabetes by 58 percent if you:

·     Lose 5 to 7 percent of your body weight (about 10 to 14 pounds if you weigh 200 pounds)

·     Exercise moderately – such as brisk walking for 30 minutes at least 5 days each week

Source: Diabetes Prevention Program sponsored by the National Institutes of Health



RISK FACTORS FOR TYPE 2 DIABETES


·     Age of 45 or older

·     A parent, brother or sister with diabetes

·     African American, Alaska Native, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian, Asian American, or Pacific Islander

·     Overweight/obesity

·     Woman who has had gestational diabetes or given birth to a baby weighing more than 9 pounds

·     Lack of physical activity, particularly for people who are overweight

·     High blood pressure

·     Low HDL cholesterol (less than 35 ) or high triglycerides (250 or higher)

·     Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

·     Other conditions associated with insulin resistance (a condition in which the body produces insulin but does not use it properly) such as acanthosis nigricans (dark patches of skin)

Some of these risk factors, such as age and family history are things that you cannot control.  However, some of the factors you can do something about such as losing weight or becoming more physically active.



SYMPTOMS

People with prediabetes usually don’t experience any signs or symptoms.  In fact, millions of people who have diabetes don’t know it because the symptoms develop gradually.  Symptoms of diabetes include:


·     Increased thirst

·     Frequent urination

·     Fatigue

·     Extreme hunger

·     Slow-healing sores

·     Pain, tingling, numbness in hands or feet

·     Blurred vision

·     Unexplained weight loss

·     Irritability

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms and think you may have diabetes, please talk to you doctor.


COMPLICATIONS

When you take action to prevent diabetes, you will also reduce your risk of possible complications associated with diabetes including:

·     Heart disease

·     Stroke

·     Kidney failure

·     Blindness

·     Nerve damage

·     Blood vessel damage that may require amputation



Source: National Diabetes Education Program