Pre-Diabetes vs. Diabetes

by | Mar 18, 2022 | Diabetes | 0 comments

What is Pre-Diabetes & Diabetes?

Diabetes isn’t anyone’s fault. But when you hear that word, it can make you feel like it’s your fault. It helps to take a closer look at pre-diabetes and diabetes so you understand what’s happening to your body and how your lifestyle choices affect your disease.


When the doctor says you have pre-diabetes, it means lab test values show you have impaired glucose tolerance. Some people may take this diagnosis lightly and think, “Oh, I don’t have to worry. I am only borderline or have only slightly higher blood sugar levels.” However, you should know this condition increases your risk not only for diabetes, but also for heart disease and a number of other serious ailments.

In a nutshell, pre-diabetes is when your blood sugar (glucose) levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be type 2 diabetes. You have probably taken a Fasting Glucose Test (FGT). Normal results range between 70-100 mg/dL. If you’ve tested between 100-125 mg/dL, your doctor may be concerned and requested you take a Glucose Tolerance Test (GTT). If these results are in the range of 140-199 mg/dL, your doctor may be more concerned. He or she will want to measure your average estimated blood sugar over the past two to three months, known as your A1C. If your results are between 5.7% and 6.4%, you are pre-diabetic.


When your blood sugar level is 126 mg/dL or higher after taking the FGT (fasting glucose test) or 200 mg/dL or greater from the GTT or your A1C is 6.5% or higher, you have diabetes. Type 2 is the most common form of diabetes. With type 2, either the pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin or the cells ignore the insulin it does make. Insulin is used in transporting glucose (sugar) to the areas of the body that need it. Basically, when you eat, your body breaks down food into energy or sugar. Then insulin transfers the sugar from the blood into the cells, nourishing the body. When you have diabetes, you don’t produce enough insulin or your body can’t use what it makes. Therefore, you have a backup of sugar in your blood, which can lead to complications if uncontrolled, such as damage to nerves and arteries.

To reduce your risk for complications follow your meal plan, stay active, check your blood sugars, take your medication, maintain a healthy weight, and seek support from your health care team.

Risk factors that can lead to pre-diabetes or diabetes include high blood pressure, long-term steroid use, family history, having diabetes during pregnancy, and being overweight or sedentary. Risk also increases with age, especially if you are 45 years or older. Additionally, you can have diabetes for years and not know it, but during this time, the disease may have harmed your eyes, nerves, and kidneys.

Diabetes Diagnosis

Now that you have all the clinical information, your next step is learning how to control your blood sugars to maintain optimum health and prevent complications, like blindness, amputation, and heart and kidney disease. With the help of Dollar Diabetes Clubs, you can create a plan to manage your blood sugar and weight, and reduce your risk of developing complications.

Weighing Information

Last week, we talked about how reaching and maintaining a healthy weight will help you better deal with your pre-diabetes or diabetes diagnosis. But what is a healthy weight for you?

To get a better picture of your potential risk factors, physicians often obtain patients’ Body Mass Index, or BMI. BMI is a numerical rating based on height and weight. The higher the BMI, the more likely to incur health issues, like heart disease and diabetes. Here are the different BMI categories:

  • Less than 18.5 – underweight
  • 18.6-24.9 – recommended
  • 25.0-29.9 – overweight
  • More than 30 – obese

Once you know your BMI rating, you know where you stand and where you should be. To get there, however, is a process. Successful and healthy weight loss starts with setting reasonable and attainable objectives, such as losing 1 or 2 pounds a week. It also helps to regularly check your progress. Choose a day and time each week to weigh in. If it’ll help you stay motivated, keep a journal of your weigh-ins or even plot them out on a graph so you can visualize how far you’ve come on your weight-loss journey.

Following a meal plan, staying active, checking your blood sugars, taking your medication, and seeking support from your healthcare team will replace that sense of fault with a feeling of empowerment. Remember, your diabetes doesn’t control you; you control your diabetes.


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