For people without diabetes, the normal range for the A1c level is lower than 5.7%. Hemoglobin A1c level between 5.7% - 6.4% signals prediabetes, and it means you have a higher chance of getting diabetes. When the A1c level passes over 6.5%, you are diagnosed with diabetes.
A1c, or Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), is considered the gold standard for managing diabetes. Basically, A1c is a form of hemoglobin that is covalently bound to glucose. Hemoglobin is a protein in your red blood cells and as blood glucose circulates in your bloodstream, some of it attaches or binds to, hemoglobin. Once your hemoglobin has glucose attached to it, it has been glycated. Your A1c value is the percent of your hemoglobin that has glucose molecules attached to it. It is measured primarily to identify the three-month average plasma glucose concentration and thus can be used as a diagnostic test for diabetes and as an assessment test for glycemic control in people with diabetes.
Following it over time allows for risk evaluation for complications arising from diabetes. There’s a strong positive correlation between high A1c numbers and diabetic neuropathy. In general, the higher your blood sugar levels, the higher your A1c. That is why healthcare professionals use A1c as a test for prediabetes and diabetes.
An increase in blood sugar happens because of insulin resistance, which develops over time. Once you have insulin resistance, your cells have more trouble taking up glucose to use for fuel or convert to and store as fat. This means that more of the glucose stays in your blood. Lifestyle choices can significantly affect your blood sugar levels, and these factors may raise blood sugar and A1c values:
Protect yourself from diabetes complications.
Try to get at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. It doesn’t have to be formal exercise. Find something you enjoy doing that gets your body moving — take your dog for a walk, play a sport with a friend, or just wander and explore around.
Avoid processed foods as much as possible, and say no to sugary sodas and fruit juice. Be mindful of serving sizes, Using a salad plate instead of a full-sized dinner plate can help prevent overeating.
Recent studies show that some nutrients can help lowering blood glucose and A1c levels. These essential nutrients are Lysine, Zinc and Vitamin C. We consume them every day in our diet but not at the levels needed to show a beneficial effect.
If you are diabetic, pre-diabetic or feel you may be at risk of becoming diabetic we are here to help you. Diabetes is a terrible disease that can be avoided and or better managed. Diabetes Wellness Community comes together to support each other and offer their experiences to help answer questions you might have.