7 Reasons You Should Be Screen for Prediabetes
Could you have prediabetes? Could you be on the path to full-blown type 2 diabetes – and not know it?
Yes, you sure could. The symptoms are very subtle. You might have this condition and not realize it.
Prediabetes means your blood glucose (sugar) is higher than normal, but not yet diabetes. Diabetes is a serious disease that can cause heart attack, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, or loss of feet or legs. Alzheimer’s disease has also been linked with type 2 diabetes.
It’s something to take very seriously.
Here’s the good news: With lifestyle changes, it’s entirely possible to stop prediabetes in its tracks. You can prevent it from developing into diabetes – simply by switching to a healthy diet and getting a little more exercise (walking!). Losing excess weight is also very important. But this is often not enough to turn things around.
Are You at High Risk?
Some people are definitely at higher risk for prediabetes. If any of these points below apply to you, it’s especially critical that you get screened:
- You’re a woman who had a baby weighing more than 9 pounds at birth. This indicates you had gestational diabetes while you were pregnant, and increases your chances of developing type 2 diabetes.
- You have a sister, brother or parent with diabetes. If you have a family history of type 2 diabetes, it may be difficult to figure out whether your diabetes is due to lifestyle factors or genetic susceptibility. Most likely it is due to both.
- You’re overweight or obese. Research shows obesity is a top reason for type 2 diabetes. Because of the rise in obesity among U.S. children, type 2 diabetes is affecting more teenagers. Extra weight can also lead to gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy).
- You’re over age 45. Age greatly increases risk of prediabetes and diabetes.
- You’re part of a particular ethnic group. Diabetes happens more frequently in African American, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian, Asian Americans, Alaskans or Pacific Island natives.
- You’ve had polycystic ovary syndrome. Women are at higher risk if they have had polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
- A blood sugar test showed you had high blood sugar. If you had what’s called a “random” blood test without fasting, the results are not considered accurate. But if you fasted before the blood sugar test and learned you had high blood sugar, it’s important to take the next steps. You may have prediabetes or diabetes – so make an appointment to see a doctor.
To schedule an appointment with an endocrinologist at St. Vincent Evansville, call 812-415-4DOC(4362) or visit StVincentSWIN.org/4DOC.