Prediabetes: Why you shouldn’t ignore it

skd238518sdc_3003632_300_2164_1388_C_R_jpgMeteorologists can often warn us of impending bad weather. Doctors can often do the same with our health, warning us when we’re at risk for a serious disease.

For example, a condition called prediabetes.

If you’ve been diagnosed with prediabetes, it means your blood glucose (sugar) level is creeping up. Your level isn’t high enough yet to be called type 2 diabetes, but it is abnormally high. The condition is basically a warning that screams, “Pay attention! Danger ahead!” That’s because your risk of developing full-blown diabetes is increased with prediabetes. And once you have diabetes, it never goes away.

But here’s the good news: If you act now, you can slow this trip toward diabetes. You may even be able to stop it altogether.

Taking a safer route

According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), you can cut your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 58 percent if you:

• Lose just 7 percent of your body weight, or about 15 pounds if you weigh 200 pounds.

• Exercise moderately – taking a brisk walk, for example – 30 minutes a day, five days a week.

These may require turning off the TV, prioritizing schedules to make time for exercise and eating and shopping in a new way. A healthy diet is one that cuts back on calories and fat and emphasizes low-fat or nonfat dairy products, whole grains, lean meats, dried beans, fish and lots of fruits and vegetables.

By taking positive steps now to control prediabetes, you can put yourself on the path to better health, a path that just might lead to a life without diabetes.

Contact the PeaceHealth St. Joseph Nutrition and Diabetes Clinic to learn more, at 360/734-5400.

Courtesy of PeaceHealth

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