The Lowdown on Prediabetes

Key facts about risk and prevention

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 86 million Americans have prediabetes. If you or a loved one is among them, a bit of knowledge can help take control of the condition.


It is not really a disease
If your doctor says you have prediabetes, it means your blood glucose level is higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes. Prediabetes itself is not a disease. It means you are at risk for developing diabetes.


Who’s at risk
There are certain characteristics among people with prediabetes: overweight, not physically active, over 45, have a family history of diabetes, or had diabetes during pregnancy. But none of these factors alone means you will necessarily develop prediabetes.


Because prediabetes is not a disease, there are no signs or symptoms that most people would detect themselves.


A test can tell you
You really need a blood test to know if your glucose levels are higher than they should be. If you are overweight and physically inactive, you might benefit from screening for prediabetes. Talk to your doctor if you are concerned.



Keep Diabetes in Check


Lose weight if necessary
Even 10 to 15 pounds helps.


Eat wisely
Fill half your plate with non-starchy vegetables.


Keep moving
Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise every day.