Are you at risk for Diabetes?
Diabetes is a serious disease and is increasing at alarming rates world-wide. There are some people that are at higher risk of developing diabetes due to their family history and their ethnic background. Others are at higher risk because of their lifestyle choices.
The good news is we now have research that shows us that Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed if you find out early, and make some lifestyle changes.
You are at risk for Type 2 diabetes if you:
- are over the age of 40 years old
- have a first degree relative with type 2 diabetes (eg. mother, father, brother, sister, son, daughter)
- are a member of a high-risk population (eg. Aboriginal, African, Asian, Hispanic or South Asian descent)
- have a history of gestational diabetes
- have delivered a large baby (eg. over 9 pounds birthweight)
- have been diagnosed with prediabetes
- have complications associated with diabetes (eg. eye, kidney or nerve damage)
- have cardiovascular complications (eg. heart attack, stroke, or peripheral vascular disease)
- have high cholesterol or high triglycerides
- have high blood pressure
- are overweight, especially around your waist
- have polycystic ovarian syndrome
- have darkened skin under your arms or under your breasts (called acanthosis nigricans)
- have a history of depression, bipolar disorder or schizophrenia
- take steroid medications for other diseases
To see if you are at risk, take the Canadian Diabetes Risk Questionnaire
What is Prediabetes?
Prediabetes is diagnosed when your blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes. It is your "warning light" that you are at risk for diabetes. Just like when your car gives you a warning light, and you get it fixed before it breaks down--the diagnosis of prediabetes is your warning light to make some changes now. Research has shown that some long-term complications related to diabetes (heart disease and nerve damage) can begin during prediabetes.
How is Prediabetes Diagnosed?
||Result confirming Prediabetes
|Fasting Blood Glucose
||6.1 to 6.9
|| 3.5 to 6
|Random Glucose 2 hours after eating
||7.8 to 11.0
||less than 7.8
|A1C (blood test to check average blood sugar over past 3 months)
||6.0 to 6.4 %
||4 to 6 %
What Can I do?
The good news is that research has shown you can delay or prevent type 2 diabetes from developing by:
- increasing your physical activity (recommended at least 150 minutes per week)
- eating a healthy, low-fat meal plan
- targeting a 5 to 10% weight loss (from your current weight)
Several research studies have shown a 58% reduction in progression to diabetes with being active and eating healthy.
To attend a class on prediabetes in your area, complete a self-referral form.