Over the years, prediabetes has become an increasingly worrying health condition that affects millions of lives all over the world. Despite being a common health issue, many are still unaware of this condition and oftentimes fail to take the necessary preventive measures. Along with that, there are also lots of misinformation and myths surrounding the condition, which makes things difficult when it comes to combating the disease. This article explains what there is to know about prediabetes, including its causes, symptoms and risk factors, whether it is reversible or not, and finally, some simple tips to follow to help manage the condition.
What is Prediabetes and What Causes It?
Simply put, prediabetes is a common, yet serious condition in which your blood sugar is higher than the normal levels but not high enough to qualify as a diagnosis of diabetes.
Typically, a person’s digestive system breaks down food to produce glucose, which is distributed into the bloodstream. A hormone called insulin helps cells take up glucose and use it for energy. It is the insulin hormones that help lower your blood sugar level. The causes of prediabetes are similar to those of diabetes, though they are at an earlier stage. They primarily consist of:
- Insulin resistance, which occurs when cells do not respond properly to insulin.
- Increased metabolic disturbance as a result of both worsening hyperglycemia and insulin resistance.
Just as with type-1 and type-2 diabetes, prediabetes can also lead to a wide range of serious health conditions, ranging from nerve damage to increased risk of cardiovascular illness, as well as the risk of developing type-2 diabetes. Fortunately, prediabetes is completely reversible. Also Read: Beverage Tips For People With Diabetes
Symptoms of Prediabetes
While there are no specific symptoms relating to prediabetes, some people may experience a condition called acanthosis nigricans, which is usually a sign of insulin resistance associated with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and involves the development of dark, thick, and often velvety patches of skin.
Additionally, a person diagnosed with prediabetes may also experience symptoms such as fatigue, increased thirst, increased urination, blurry vision, sores or cuts that will not heal, etc. These symptoms may indicate that your prediabetes has progressed to type-2 diabetes. It is important to consult your doctor in such cases.
Risk Factors for Prediabetes
Prediabetes can affect anyone, but certain factors can increase the risk of developing the condition. Age (45 years and above), family history of diabetes, overweight or obesity, and medical conditions such as sleep apnoea, gestational diabetes, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), high blood pressure, and increased cholesterol or triglyceride levels, are known to increase the risk of insulin resistance and prediabetes.
In addition to these, unhealthy lifestyle habits such as sedentary lifestyle or physical inactivity, regular consumption of an unhealthy, high-processed diet, and excessive use of tobacco are also another risk factors for prediabetes. Also Read: How to Avoid Blood Sugar Swings
Is Prediabetes Reversible?
As mentioned, fortunately, prediabetes is entirely reversible. Education regarding diabetes is the key to preventing the progression of prediabetes to type-2 diabetes. Educating yourself on the condition will provide you with vital information and help you understand what steps and measures you can take when it comes to reversing prediabetes, and preventing or slowing the progression to type-2 diabetes.
You can always ask your doctor for advice, or to connect you with a certified diabetes coach and other support, which can help you begin to prevent diabetes through education, working with a health coach, and support groups both online and in-person.
Ways to Potentially Reverse Prediabetes
The key to reversing prediabetes is to make consistent lifestyle changes that lower your blood sugar levels. Here are some steps you can take right now to reverse prediabetes and help prevent type-2 diabetes. These lifestyle changes are cost-effective, safe, and are effective in reversing prediabetes:
1. Lose Weight
Being overweight or obese puts you at risk of a number of serious health conditions, ranging from heart disease and high blood pressure to stroke, diabetes, and even cancer. It is also associated with reduced insulin sensitivity, which, in turn, can fuel the progression of prediabetes to type-2 diabetes.
2. Switch to a healthy diet
Changing eating habits is a step that may help reverse prediabetes. Do away with all the unhealthy, high-calorie, processed foods and include more fruits, vegetables, whole grains healthy, healthy protein sources, as well as healthy fats. This can help you lose weight and help maintain healthy, stable blood sugar levels.
3. Get adequate sleep
Studies have shown that getting too little sleep time or oversleeping is linked to increased blood sugar levels. Other research suggests a link between sleep apnea and blood sugar control in people with prediabetes. Getting an adequate amount of quality sleep can help improve blood sugar levels in people with prediabetes.
4. Be Active
A sedentary lifestyle is in and of itself a risk factor for both diabetes and prediabetes. Lack of physical activity allows cells to slack off and gradually lose their sensitivity to insulin. Regular exercise, such as running, HIIT, cardio, strength training, etc can help prevent or reverse prediabetes and insulin resistance.
5. Quit smoking
Studies have found that people who smoke have a 30–40% higher risk of developing diabetes than non-smokers. The risk increases with the number of cigarettes a person smokes. Quitting smoking can help you improve your blood sugar levels and help prevent prediabetes progression.
6. Drink enough water
Water has no calories, no carbs, and no sugar, water is an ideal drink for reversing prediabetes. It’s also a crucial component of a healthy diet or an effective weight loss program. On a more on-topic note, several studies have suggested that drinking plenty of water may help in controlling blood sugar levels. Also Read: A Cup Of Green Tea A Day Could Be The Answer To Managing Diabetes
1. Avoid alcohol
Some research suggests that excessive consumption of alcohol can increase the risk of developing type-2 diabetes. Consuming a moderate amount of alcohol may reduce a person’s risk of developing the condition.
2. Reduce your stress
Stress not also harms your sleep, but also causes the body to release hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol, which may contribute to insulin resistance. Additionally, chronic stress is also known to cause high blood sugar levels.
3. Try Preserva’s Natural Blood Sugar Control Supplements
With a rich and nutritious combination of a variety of potent ingredients, Preserva’s Diabewell Juice and Diabewell Tablets, as well as their newly-launched Diabetic Care Tea are an excellent natural solution for managing diabetes effectively. Each product is clinically formulated with the finest ingredients that work their way to suppressing sugar cravings, improving insulin sensitivity, and controlling blood sugar levels, naturally. They are perfectly safe and nutritiously health-boosting. They are the perfect supplement partners to help you toward better diabetic health. Also Read: Curcumin For Diabetes: 6 Ways Curcumin From Turmeric Helps Fight Diabetes
Disclaimer- This article is intended for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your healthcare provider in case of any health complications.