For Those Diagnosed With Diabetes You Can Reduce The Risk Of Complications:
- Monitor blood glucose levels with appropriate testing and an A1C blood test every three months to measure the average amount of sugar in your blood
- If you smoke, its never too late to quit
- Be physically active
- Examine feet and skin every day
- Have an eye exam at least once a year
- Have a kidney function test at least once a year
- Visit your healthcare provider regularly
Not All High Values Of Hba1c Tests Means You Are Diabetic
If you get a high HbA1c level, it does not mean that you are suffering from high diabetes. Many people come with different types of haemoglobin, except type A. The condition is hemoglobinopathy. It states the high or low values of HbA1c.
If you are anemic or struggling with iron deficiency in your body then also you are likely to get the wrong values on the average of 3-month diabetes test. Therefore, if you want the average of 3 months of blood glucose tests done, make sure you are not anemic.
There are some medications also well which can alter your results of glycosylated hemoglobin test levels. These include:
- Supplements like Vitamin C or E, iron, vitamin B12, and folate
- Erythropoietin therapy
- Antiviral and antimicrobial medicines.
If you are going for a glycosylated hemoglobin test, your doctor will make sure of the factors that can affect your test results.
Quantity and quality of food can have a great impact on your haemoglobin levels, which can get you incorrect values. There was a patient who had high-level stress of being diabetic because of high HbAc1 level. With stress comes so many other problems like insomnia, fatigue, low energy levels, suicidal thoughts etc. After consultation calls and joining the Diabetes Reversal Program, he is now enjoying a healthy lifestyle. This lifestyle includes nutritious food products available in the kitchen. And all the products suit his body, also he can do exercises at home or at office.
What Is An A1c Chart And What Does It Measure
The A1c chart outlines the results of an A1c test. The A1c test, also known as the hemoglobin A1c or glycated hemoglobin test, shows the estimated average glucose in your blood over the past few months.
The chart shows the percentage of red blood cells with glucose-coated hemoglobin based on estimated average glucose values. The numbers show if your blood glucose levels fall into the normal, prediabetes, or diabetes range. Reading the chart can help you understand your results.
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A1c Levels In People With Diabetes
For people with diabetes, an A1C under 7% is typically considered good control. Research shows an A1C above 9% significantly increases the risk of diabetic complications. For adults with diabetes, the target A1C range is typically between 7% and 8%. This depends on your age and other health factors.
A1C levels correspond to the following average blood sugar levels:
What Is A Dangerous Level Of A1c
When levels rise to 9.0, the risk of kidney and eye damage and neuropathy increases. Some people who are newly diagnosed could have levels over 9.0. Lifestyle changes and possibly medication can lower levels quickly. For someone who has long-standing diabetes, levels rise above 9.0 could signal the need for a change in their treatment plan.
Some labs estimate average blood glucose , which corresponds to home glucose meter readings , allowing patients to understand the results better.
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Hemoglobin A1c Average Glucose
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What Is A High A1c
A1C results show the percent of glucose and hemoglobin bound together in your bloodstream. For example, a 5% A1C indicates five out of every 100 hemoglobins are glycated. The higher your A1C, the greater the risk of developing complications.
- Normal: Less than 5.7%
- Prediabetes: 5.7% to 6.4%
- Diabetes: 6.5% or higher
Talk to your healthcare provider if your A1C is in the prediabetic range. Prediabetes is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes. A diet change, increased activity, and moderate weight loss can help improve blood sugar control to prevent diabetes.
What Factors Can Interfere With A1c Test
Some of these interfering factors that can affect HbA1C test results include
- Inaccurate results: Disease conditions such as sickle cell anemia, kidney disease, liver disease, anemia, Thalassemia, drugs
- False low A1C Value: Pregnancy, hemorrhage, kidney disease, liver disease, anemia, alcohol, folic acid deficiency.
- False High A1C value: Iron deficiency in the blood
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Official Hba1c Ada Recommendation For Someone With Diabetes
The American Diabetes Association recommends an HbA1C of less than 7% for most nonpregnant adults with diabetes. A lower goal, such as less than 6.5%, may be appropriate for some people who have had diabetes for a shorter amount of time, for younger people, for those without heart disease, and/or for those with type 2 diabetes treated with lifestyle or metformin only. A higher HbA1C goal, such as less than 8%, may be appropriate for people with a history of severe hypoglycemia, a limited life expectancy, advanced diabetes complications, other illnesses, or for whom a lower HbA1C goal is difficult to achieve. Its important that people with diabetes discuss their target blood sugar goals with their health care provider.
HbA1C levels should be checked between two to four times per year in people who have diabetes.
Type 2 Diabetes Not Treated With Insulin
For people with type 2 diabetes treated with healthy behaviour interventions, with or without noninsulin antihyperglycemic agents, the effectiveness and frequency of monitoring BG in improving glycemic control is less clear . A series of recent meta-analyses, all using different methodologies and inclusion criteria, have generally shown a small benefit to reducing A1C in those individuals performing SMBG compared to those who did not . The magnitude of the benefit is small, with absolute A1C reductions ranging from 0.2% to 0.5%. These analyses demonstrated greater A1C reductions in those performing SMBG when the baseline A1C was > 8% . SMBG has been demonstrated to be most effective in persons with type 2 diabetes within the first 6 months after diagnosis . Also of significance, there is no evidence that SMBG affects ones satisfaction, general well-being or general health-related quality of life .
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Is There Anything Else I Need To Know About An Hba1c Test
The A1C test is not used to diagnose gestational diabetes or type 1 diabetes.
Also, if you have a condition that affects your red blood cells, such as anemia or another type of blood disorder, an A1C test may not be accurate for diagnosing diabetes. Kidney failure and liver disease can also affect A1C results. In these cases, your provider may recommend different tests to diagnose diabetes and prediabetes.
What Can You Do To Improve Your A1c Levels
People often wonder how long it will take to improve their A1C number. By following your diabetes self-care plan, you can improve your A1C by your next three-month check. Your A1C may continue to go down at each visit if you continue to partner with your healthcare provider and follow the tips above.
Its not helpful to test your A1C more frequently than every three months, and more frequent testing is not always covered by insurance. If you feel like you have followed your healthcare providers recommendations but your A1C level is high, dont take it personally. Again, there are many factors that make diabetes management difficult, and if you continue to work on it, your number will come down.
In summary, the A1C test gives you a picture of your overall glucose levels. There is no bad or good number, just information that helps you and your healthcare provider understand how well your diabetes management plan is working.
Using an A1C calculator can give you an idea of how your A1C translates into an EAG number that you can recognize, using the same unit of measurement as shown on a blood glucose meter. However, remember that A1C goals can be different for each person based on age, treatment goals, access to diabetes supplies, and other health issues present, so dont be afraid to talk with your healthcare professional about setting your unique goals to lead to better diabetes management.
Some Of The Ways Medicines Can Lower A1c Include:
- cause the liver to reduce its output of glucose
- adding insulin when the body is not producing a sufficient quantity
- reducing insulin resistance by making the body more sensitive to its own insulin
- cause the body to increase production of insulin
Keep in mind that illness or infection can also affect A1C. Be sure to make a note of any illnesses you may have had so you can offer your health care provider this information at your next visit.
Hemoglobin A1c Not Reliable In Diagnosing Type 2 Diabetes
With Maria Mercedes Chang Villacreses, MD, and Elena Christofides, MD, FACE
The test that doctors most often rely on to detect a persons risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetesthe hemoglobin A1c blood testtoo often delivers a poor reading, thereby missing the diagnosis in nearly three out of four at-risk individuals,1 according to research presented at the Endocrine Society meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana.
The investigators compared the accuracy of the A1c test with the other screening method used to assess patients risk of diabetesthe oral glucose tolerance test to arrive at this startling conclusion.1
The common use of the hemoglobin A1c test to screen for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes should be skipped in place of more reliable tests. Photo: 123rf
The A1c missed almost 73% of the people with diabetes in comparison to the oral glucose tolerance test, says Maria Mercedes Chang Villacreses, MD, a clinical endocrinology fellow at the City of Hope Diabetes and Metabolism Research Institute in Duarte, California, who introduced the findings at the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society but are considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed medical journal.
Since the fasting blood test requires a person to fast, the OGTT measures the bodys response to sugar it requires a person to fast overnight. First, blood is taken, then the person drinks a sugary drink. Blood is taken again two hours later.
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Normal Blood Sugar Levels After Eating For Diabetics
The American Diabetes Association recommends that the blood sugar 1 to 2 hours after the beginning of a meal be less than 180 mg/dl for most nonpregnant adults with diabetes. This is typically the peak, or highest, blood sugar level in someone with diabetes. Again, this target may need to be individualized for certain people based on such factors as duration of diabetes, age and life expectancy, cognitive status, other health conditions, cardiovascular complications, and hypoglycemia unawareness. Its important that people with diabetes discuss their target blood sugar goals with their health care provider.
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Doctors And Patients Should Discuss Goals Of Treatment Together And Come Up With An Individual Plan
Blood sugar goals should take into account a patients life expectancy and general health, as well as personal preferences, and include a frank discussion of the risks, benefits, and costs of medications. This is a big deal because it reflects a change in how we think about blood sugar control. Its not a simply number to aim for its a discussion. Diabetes medications have many potential side effects, including dangerously low blood sugar and weight gain . Yes, uncontrolled blood sugars can lead to very bad things, but patients should get all the information they need to balance the risks and benefits of any blood sugar control plan.
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What Is A Hba1c Test
The hemoglobin A1c test measures the amount of blood sugar attached to your hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is the part of your red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. It is an important blood test that gives a good indication of how well your diabetes is being controlled.
You can check these average blood sugar levels yourself, but youll have to buy a kit, whereas your healthcare professional will do it for free. Its different from a finger-prick test, which is a snapshot of your blood sugar levels at a particular time, on a particular day.
You find out your HbA1c level by getting a blood test by a doctor or nurse. Your healthcare team will arrange this for you, but chase it up with your GP if you havent had one for a few months.
Most people will have the test every three to six months. But you may need it more often if youre planning for a baby, your treatment has recently changed, or youre having problems managing your blood sugar levels.
And some people will need the test less often, usually later on during pregnancy. Or need a different test altogether, like with some types of anaemia. A fructosamine test can be used instead, but its very rare.
An HbA1c test is also used to diagnose diabetes, and to keep an eye on your levels if youre at risk of developing diabetes .
The test is sometimes called haemoglobin A1c or just A1c.
Start An Exercise Plan You Enjoy And Do It Regularly
Find something you enjoy doing that gets your body moving, whether its taking your dog for a walk, playing a sport with a friend, or riding your bike.
The ADA recommends getting 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week, says Jordana Turkel, a certified diabetes care and education specialist and registered dietitian at Park Avenue Endocrinology & Nutrition in New York City. Different types of exercise can lower your A1C by making your body more sensitive to insulin, Turkel says. She encourages her patients not to go more than two days in a row without exercising and to aim for two days of strength training per week.
Be sure to check with your healthcare provider before embarking on an exercise plan, though. Together, you can come up with an individualized plan.
And if you monitor your blood sugar daily, check it before and after exercise. As the ADA explains, exercise improves insulin sensitivity and lowers your blood sugar levels. In certain circumstances, though, stress hormones produced during more intense exercise can also increase blood sugar levels. In addition, other factors, such as what you eat before exercise and the timing of your workout, may also affect your numbers.
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