Prediabetes means your blood glucose (also called blood sugar) levels are higher than normal. When your blood glucose levels reach a certain level, you have diabetes. This is a disease that occurs when your body doesn’t make or use the hormone insulin properly. It causes too much glucose to build up in the blood. Too much glucose in your blood can be harmful to your body over time.
You are diagnosed with pre-diabetes if your HbA1c blood test is between 42-47 mmol/l (6.0% and 6.4%)
Prediabetes is when your blood glucose levels are too high, but not high enough to be called diabetes. People who develop type 2 diabetes usually have prediabetes first. If you have prediabetes, you are at much higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes. You are also at risk of developing otherhealth conditions, including heart disease or stroke.The good news is that, if you have prediabetes, you can prevent or delay the onset of full-blown type 2 diabetes by making lifestyle changes. These include eating a healthy diet, reaching and maintaining a healthy weight, and exercising regularly.
Between 5-10% of people with prediabetes go on to develop type 2 diabetes each year. However 80% of cases of type 2 diabetes could be delayed or prevented through making lifestyle changes. Remember once you are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, your cannot reverse it and revert back to normal. The best you can do is go into remission. That’s why if you have prediabetes, you still have a chance to revert back to completely normal if you follow this advice.
What can you do to help yourself?
- Be physically active. Get fit for free!
- Achieve or maintain a healthy weight. Start the NHS weight loss plan
- Eat a balanced diet. Eat well.
- Stop smoking if you are a smoker, 10 self-help tips to stop smoking
What else can you do at Haughton Thornley Medical Centres to help you prevent diabetes
- Please ensure you are able to view your electronic health records so that you can see your test results as well as reading what your doctor or nurse has written for you too.
- 70% of all our patients with prediabetes have already registered to be able to do this (June 2019)
- If you would like to sign up too then complete the online Safety Checklist questionnaire and get your PIN numbers from the receptionist if you have not already done so. See here for more information (and remember to encourage all your family and friends to do this too).
- Evergreen Life PHR allows and Patient Access allow you to view your electronic health records and we recommend you download both apps to use.
Evergreen Life PHR also allows you to monitor aspects of your health eg your weight
Patient Access allows you to draw graphs to see how your HbA1c changes over time or any other values that you wish to see eg blood pressure, weight, lipid profile or others
- The adage that you can’t outrun a bad diet is true! It is much easier to lose weight on a good diet than it is through exercise if you are eating a poor diet. The Pioppi diet is an excellent way to change your diet whilst also exercising too. According to research, unhealthy diets – particularly diets containing a lot of sugar are responsible for more disease than alcohol, smoking and physical inactivity put together.
- An excessively sugary diet directly increases the risk of type 2 diabetes eg an excess of 150 calories of sugar in an individual’s diet leads to an 11x increase in the prevalence of type 2 diabetes compared with 150 calories from fat or protein! There are benefits for preventing the risks even if there is no weight loss either (knowing how difficult it can be to lose weight).
- Set yourself a goal and a plan to achieve that goal. What can you do in the next 24 hours, the next week, the next month and 3 months from now? Plan now and start to build your future. Be ready for change!
- Become a creature of habit – start with something really simple like drinking a glass of water first thing when you wake up and having a wholesome breakfast – stops you from comfort eating or feeling hungry and then grazing.
- The bottom line – change your diet and cut out carbohydrate rich foods to reduce your risks
- Self refer to Be Well Tameside for further help to change your lifestyle. They can also help you to reverse obesity through lifestyle changes and other treatments potentially including surgery if need be (although this is reserved only for extreme examples when all else has failed)
- Consider starting a low carbohydrate programme (currently £14.99 per month or £69.99 per year June 2019). Over 416,000 people have done this and are benefiting from the programme whether they suffer with prediabetes, diabetes or obesity.
- The Low Carb Freshwell project is also a useful resource set up by Dr David Oliver & Dr Kim Andrews at the Freshwell Health Centre, Essex, UK, to encourage the members of its community to live a Real Food Low Carb lifestyle, so they may be as healthy as possible. You can also download an app and free meal planners too.
- Exercise is good for you too. Consider joining the Hyde parkrun on Saturday mornings at 9am. It is for all people of all shapes and sizes and levels of fitness. Even if all you do is walk then come along – its a great way to improve your fitness levels and join other people in the community too.
- Find out your risk of developing type 2 diabetes – all you need is a tape measure, your height and a weighing scale and answer a few simple questions
- Tell your friends, family, nurse and doctor what you are doing and why. Show them your data and amaze them as they see you changing your outlook and start to feel good about who you are and what you do.
- Believe in yourself and your ability to look after yourself too! You hold the key to the new you with your GP practice supporting you all the way!