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Prediabetes: It’s serious. It’s common. It’s reversible.

Prediabetes is a serious health condition when blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not yet high enough for you to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.


About 1 out of 3 U.S. adults has prediabetes, however 90 percent of them don’t know they have it. Having prediabetes increases your risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke. You can have prediabetes but have no clear symptoms.

Prediabetes is a serious health condition when blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not yet high enough for you to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Without lifestyle changes, prediabetes sufferers are very likely to progress to type 2 diabetes.

With type 2 diabetes, your body does not use insulin properly. This causes your blood sugar levels to rise. Over time, type 2 diabetes increases the risk of serious health problems such as kidney disease and blindness.

Prediabetes occurs when your body isn’t responding normally to insulin. Insulin is made by your pancreas, and is a hormone that lets blood sugar into your cells to use as energy. When your cells don’t respond normally to insulin, your body makes more insulin to try and get your cells to respond. With the constant flow of too much insulin, and your pancreas not keeping up, your blood sugar rises.

Prediabetes increases your risk of:

  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke

Nearly 1 in 10 upstate N.Y. adults has been told they have prediabetes. A blood sugar test can show if you have prediabetes. Only 56 percent of Utica/Rome/North Country residents have had a test for high blood sugar or diabetes in the last 3 years (BRFSS 2016 data). Talk with your doctor about getting your blood sugar tested if you are:

  • Overweight
  • A child or sibling of someone with type 2 diabetes
  • Physically active less than 3 times a week
  • African-American, Hispanic/Latino-American, American Indian or Alaska Native

If you have prediabetes, you should know that it’s common and it’s serious, but it is reversible. You can help bring your blood sugar levels back to normal by:

  • Eating healthy foods
  • Exercising regularly
  • Maintaining a healthy weight

Normal fasting blood sugar levels should be below 100 mg/dL, prediabetics have a blood sugar level between 100 mg/dL to 125 mg/dL, and if your fasting blood sugar level is above 126 mg/dL you should be tested for type 2 diabetes.

If you do have prediabetes there are steps you can take to lower your risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

  • Losing a small amount of weight if you’re overweight (5% to 7% of your body weight)
  • Eating healthy and add more physical activity into your day.
  • Manage stress, stay motivated, and align yourself with people with similar goals

Make an appointment to talk with your doctor about your risk. Take care of your future health today.

Learn more about prediabetes:

  • Visit DoIHavePrediabetes.org and take a 1-minute risk test
  • Visit www.CDC.gov/diabetes/prevention for information regarding the National Diabetes Prevention Program