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Prediabetes: What is it and what can I do?

What is prediabetes?

Prediabetes is a condition that comes before diabetes. It means your blood glucose levels are higher than normal but aren’t high enough to be called diabetes. There are no clear symptoms of prediabetes. You can have it and not know it.

If I have prediabetes, what does it mean?

It means you might get type 2 diabetes soon or down the road. You are also more likely to get heart disease or have a stroke. The good news is that you can take steps to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes.

How can I delay or prevent type 2 diabetes?

You may be able to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes with:

  • Daily physical activity, such as walking.
  • Weight loss, if needed. Losing even a few pounds will help.
  • Medication, if your doctor prescribes it. If you have prediabetes, these steps may bring your blood glucose to a normal range. But you are still at a higher risk for type 2 diabetes.

Regular physical activity can delay or prevent diabetes.

Being active is one of the best ways to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes. It can also lower your weight and blood pressure, and improve cholesterol levels. Ask your health care team about activities that are safe for you. One way to be more active is to try to walk for half an hour, five days a week. If you don’t have 30 minutes all at once, take shorter walks during the day.

Weight loss can delay or prevent diabetes. Reaching a healthy weight can help you a lot. If you’re overweight, any weight loss, even 7 percent of your weight (for example, losing about 15 pounds if you weigh 200), may lower your risk for diabetes.

Make Healthy Choices

Here are small steps that can go a long way toward building healthy habits. Small steps add up to big rewards. Avoid or cut back on regular soft drinks and juice. Have water or try calorie-free drinks.

  • Choose lower-calorie snacks, such as popcorn instead of potato chips.
  • Include at least one vegetable every day for dinner.
  • Be careful with salad toppings—the calories can add up fast.
  • Choose fruit instead of cake, pie or cookies.
  • Cut calories by: – Eating smaller servings of your usual foods. – When eating out, share your main course with a friend or family member. Or take half of the meal home for lunch the next day.
  • Roast, broil, grill, steam or bake instead of deep-frying or pan-frying.
  • Be mindful of how much fat you use in cooking.
  • Avoid foods high in saturated fat, such as butter, lard and shortening.
  • Use healthy oils, such as canola, olive and vegetable.
  • Start with one meat-free meal each week by trying plant-based proteins such as beans or lentils in place of meat.
  • Choose fish at least twice a week.
  • Eat lean meats, such as the round or loin cuts, or chicken without the skin.
  • Cut back on processed meats that are high in fat and sodium. These include hot dogs, sausage and bacon.
  • Eat fewer and smaller portion sizes of desserts and treats, such as ice cream, cake and cookies. Try saving these for special occasions. Track Your Progress Write down what and how much you eat and drink for a week. Writing things down makes you more aware of what you’re eating and helps with weight loss. Take note of the easier changes you can make to reduce your calories and start there.

Summing It Up

Diabetes is a common, but serious, disease. You can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes by increasing your activity and losing a small amount of weight.

Get Started

  • Be physically active.
  • Make a plan to lose weight.
  • Track your progress. Get Checked If you are at increased risk for diabetes, ask your doctor about getting tested at your next visit. You can take our risk test at diabetes.org/risktest to find out if you are at risk for type 2 diabetes.

Categories: Wellness
Tagged In: Diabetes, Prediabetes
Posted on March 27, 2017

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Prediabetes: What is it and what can I do?

What is prediabetes?

Prediabetes is a condition that comes before diabetes. It means your blood glucose levels are higher than normal but aren’t high enough to be called diabetes. There are no clear symptoms of prediabetes. You can have it and not know it.

If I have prediabetes, what does it mean?

It means you might get type 2 diabetes soon or down the road. You are also more likely to get heart disease or have a stroke. The good news is that you can take steps to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes.

How can I delay or prevent type 2 diabetes?

You may be able to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes with:

  • Daily physical activity, such as walking.
  • Weight loss, if needed. Losing even a few pounds will help.
  • Medication, if your doctor prescribes it. If you have prediabetes, these steps may bring your blood glucose to a normal range. But you are still at a higher risk for type 2 diabetes.

Regular physical activity can delay or prevent diabetes.

Being active is one of the best ways to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes. It can also lower your weight and blood pressure, and improve cholesterol levels. Ask your health care team about activities that are safe for you. One way to be more active is to try to walk for half an hour, five days a week. If you don’t have 30 minutes all at once, take shorter walks during the day.

Weight loss can delay or prevent diabetes. Reaching a healthy weight can help you a lot. If you’re overweight, any weight loss, even 7 percent of your weight (for example, losing about 15 pounds if you weigh 200), may lower your risk for diabetes.

Make Healthy Choices

Here are small steps that can go a long way toward building healthy habits. Small steps add up to big rewards. Avoid or cut back on regular soft drinks and juice. Have water or try calorie-free drinks.

  • Choose lower-calorie snacks, such as popcorn instead of potato chips.
  • Include at least one vegetable every day for dinner.
  • Be careful with salad toppings—the calories can add up fast.
  • Choose fruit instead of cake, pie or cookies.
  • Cut calories by: – Eating smaller servings of your usual foods. – When eating out, share your main course with a friend or family member. Or take half of the meal home for lunch the next day.
  • Roast, broil, grill, steam or bake instead of deep-frying or pan-frying.
  • Be mindful of how much fat you use in cooking.
  • Avoid foods high in saturated fat, such as butter, lard and shortening.
  • Use healthy oils, such as canola, olive and vegetable.
  • Start with one meat-free meal each week by trying plant-based proteins such as beans or lentils in place of meat.
  • Choose fish at least twice a week.
  • Eat lean meats, such as the round or loin cuts, or chicken without the skin.
  • Cut back on processed meats that are high in fat and sodium. These include hot dogs, sausage and bacon.
  • Eat fewer and smaller portion sizes of desserts and treats, such as ice cream, cake and cookies. Try saving these for special occasions. Track Your Progress Write down what and how much you eat and drink for a week. Writing things down makes you more aware of what you’re eating and helps with weight loss. Take note of the easier changes you can make to reduce your calories and start there.

Summing It Up

Diabetes is a common, but serious, disease. You can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes by increasing your activity and losing a small amount of weight.

Get Started

  • Be physically active.
  • Make a plan to lose weight.
  • Track your progress. Get Checked If you are at increased risk for diabetes, ask your doctor about getting tested at your next visit. You can take our risk test at diabetes.org/risktest to find out if you are at risk for type 2 diabetes.

Categories: Wellness
Tagged In: Diabetes, Prediabetes
Posted on March 27, 2017

Upcoming Events & Classes

See More Events

Physical Therapist Tips

A degree or credential after a health care provider’s name provides identification of earned education, experience and competency criteria in their chosen field. Commonly Used Credentials for Physical therapists PT Physi …

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