Do You Know How To Monitor Your Blood Glucose Levels?

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Bayer’s Contour Blood Glucose Monitoring System

This device makes it easy and convenient for continuous glucose monitoring. You can even store your test results for up to two weeks and the test only takes five seconds each time! Notably, this device offers optimal and accurate results in that the test is taken both before and after a meal to give you the utmost control over your blood glucose levels. Price wise, it is fairly reasonable and can even be ordered online, such as on Amazon. It also only takes a very small amount of blood, 0.6 μL. It’s also very user friendly, as it it ready to use and does not require any coding before the tests are taken. Alternatively, there are other tests like the hemoglobin A1c test available too.

A1c Test

The hemoglobin A1C test also known as A1C, is a test carried out on a blood sample to help provide information about the level of blood glucose in an individual. AIC test gives results of the average glucose level for the past 2-3 months because red blood cells last up to three months before they are destroyed. It is an important test when it comes to managing or determining how well a diabetes treatment is fairing. It is a key component in helping your lower A1c levels and maintain good health.

Background Information Behind Diabetes Testing

Hemoglobin is a protein that is found in red blood cells and has great tendencies to link up with body sugars — for example glucose. This process is called glycation and the high the levels of glucose in the blood, the higher the rate hemoglobin gets glycated, that is, the more glucose gets attached to hemoglobin the higher the A1C test results. This is the basic idea behind why, blood sugars are related to diabetes and its critical to lower A1c levels.

Diabetes is a disease associated with high sugar levels in the bloodstreams and thus by measuring the amount of sugars in the blood, it is possible to know the level of diabetes can be known. Any glucose attached to hemoglobin stays in the cell for its entire lifespan.

This test is very helpful to diabetic persons and can be done even at home levels, all that is needed is blood sample and a home testing kit. This reduces the expenses that could be incurred as transport to the hospital. When done at home level, the patient is able to get important knowledge as well as able to get a schedule on when is most appropriate to visit the doctor.

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Source: Telegraph

How To Interpret Test Results

The A1C test for diabetes gives results as a percentage unlike other conventional tests which give results in terms of mg/dl.

Virtually everyone has some glucose attached to their hemoglobin in the red blood cells, and for this reason, an individual with no signs of diabetes will have A1C test results of about 5%.

In an ideal situation, the test results should not go past 7%, anything above this means that diabetes is developing and thus changes on meals/diet, medication and activities ought to be done. A range of 5.7-6.4 indicates prediabetic stage. A person with diabetes type 1 on the other hand will have A1C results of about 25%.

A person with prediabetes is likely to develop diabetes type 2 in a span of about 10 years. It is therefore very important for this person to undertake medical tests at least annually so as to be on the safe side.

Importance Of Managing Blood Sugar Levels

Managing blood sugar levels is very important because it helps one avoid complications that result from diabetes. These complications may result in negative effects on other body parts like the eyes, kidney or the nerves.

The A1C should be carried out at least twice in a year, though the number of tests may vary depending on the condition of the patient and their higher or lower A1c levels. For a diabetes type 2 patient, it’s advisable that the test be performed in every three months so as to assess the success of the treatment plan.

Conclusion

The A1C test should not however, substitute the other daily blood test. This is because, as mentioned above, it only gives the results for the last 3 months. Also, instances of heavy bleeding, lack of sufficient iron in the bloodstream as well as recent blood transfusion may render the results of A1C incorrect.

Sourced from: About Health

Photo by Mike Mozart / CC by

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