For those living with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, maintaining a healthy lifestyle can require an understanding of how the body works and knowing the criteria healthcare professionals use to diagnose and develop a treatment plan. This article will discuss prediabetes and diabetes—what distinguishes them, how they're identified, and how lifestyle changes can help with management and prevention.
The Difference Between Prediabetes and Diabetes
Understanding the difference between prediabetes and diabetes is an essential first step for managing your overall health.
Prediabetes: While sometimes asymptomatic, prediabetes is a health condition that occurs when someone has a higher-than-normal blood sugar level but not high enough to be type 2 diabetes. It’s also important to know that prediabetes is reversible.
Here's a comparison of the diagnostic criteria for prediabetes and diabetes:
|A1C||5.7% - 6.4%||≥ 6.5%|
|Fasting Blood Glucose||100 - 125 mg/dL||≥ 126 mg/dL|
|Glucose Tolerance Test||140 - 199 mg/dL||≥ 200 mg/dL|
|Random Blood Glucose||-||≥ 200 mg/dL|
Diabetes: Diabetes is a medical condition diagnosed when blood sugar levels remain consistently high. The diagnostic criteria for diabetes include elevated A1C levels, fasting blood glucose, glucose tolerance, and random blood glucose.
There are differences in how each condition is treated. For prediabetes, a healthcare professional will likely recommend following a diet and exercise plan to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes. For people living with diabetes, treatment will depend on several factors, including diabetes type.
For example, individuals with type 1 diabetes will always be prescribed insulin, while only a small percentage of individuals with type 2 will be prescribed insulin; the majority of people living with type 2 diabetes may only need to manage their condition with diet and exercise.
Lifestyle Changes to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Once you understand the differences between prediabetes and diabetes, you’ll be better prepared to seek prevention. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle will be an essential part of that process.
A healthy lifestyle should include the following:
- Healthy Eating: Includes eating fresh, fiber-rich foods in healthy portions
- Physical Activity: Exercising at a moderate level each week
- Weight Management: Maintaining a healthy weight for your body type
If you’re living with prediabetes, remember that even the smallest changes can help make an impact.
Importance of Self-Monitoring Blood Glucose
Monitoring blood sugar levels isn't just for people with diabetes. If you are currently in the prediabetic stage, monitoring blood sugar levels can help you understand how your lifestyle affects your blood sugar levels. A blood glucose meter for self-monitoring can provide a real-time view of this physiological process.
Self-monitoring blood glucose and regular check-ups with your healthcare team should go hand-in-hand. Your team can help you develop a healthy lifestyle plan, track your progress, and advise you on any changes that need to be made.
Glucose Monitoring with POGO Automatic®
The best healthy lifestyle and diabetes management plan will be unique to each individual, their current habits, and personal preferences. How you monitor your blood glucose levels is up to you and your healthcare team. Finding an easy-to-use device like the POGO Automatic Monitor can make it easier to stick to that plan and manage your diabetes discreetly and on the go.
Incorporating the POGO Automatic Monitor into your routine can empower you to take charge of your health and focus on what truly matters—living life to the fullest while effectively managing your diabetes.
Jaclyn Owens is a product director specializing in diabetes management tools. She is committed to using technology to empower people with diabetes and help them take control of their health.
All content on this website is for educational purposes only and does not replace the guidance of your healthcare practitioner. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new healthcare regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.
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