Diagnosed Pre Diabetic

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I bought a monitor ,checked first thing this morning it read 6.2mmol/L is this o.k./ normal. I am new to all this so not quite sure what this should be.

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  • Posted

    Hi there Mary, sorry to hear your news.

    You should not pay too much attention to low readings like the one you have quoted, as this will fluctuate a great deal during the day. 

    Having been diagnosed as Pre-Diabetic your doctor will be watching your condition like a hawk, so there is no need for you to get stressed-out about your blood glucose readings.

    I am Diabetic type 2 on medication, and have been for some time and know only too well that worrying about this condition will not make it any better.

    No doubt the Diabetes nurse or your doctor will have already told you to watch your diet and to try and get some regular exercise, which is the best advice anyone at your stage of the disease should take.

    Your doctor will now arrange regular 6 monthly HBA1c tests in order to  monitor how your condition progresses.

    Please don't worry about individually low reading, but if the readings suddenly start rocketing to between 11 - 14mmol/L then my advice would be to get back to see your doctor asap.

    All the best

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  • Posted


             I certainly would not worry. But I would do something about it. It did not used to be called "pre-diabetic" but was called "insulin resistant", or "metabolic syndrome". There is absolutely no inevitability that it will develop into full-blown diabetes, but often it does since many people will not make the lifestyle changes that prevent it.

             Basically, as we age we lose muscle and gain fat, now more than ever since our lives are so sedentary. As this happens, the blood-glucose level rises, and this causes damage to our artery walls. This damage is reversible, but only if you get the glucose level down again. Imagine a continual damage mechanism which is countered by a continual repair mechanism. You want the repair mechanism to win, and that involves keeping blood-glucose low.

             Dr. Atkins used to recommend a high-protein, low carbohydrate diet, at a time when the medical establishment were telling diabetics to eat lots of whole grains. I followed his advice, which also involved taking more exercise, and my blood-glucose level came right down, lower than yours is now. I,like a lot of people, was eating "ready meals" and I swallowed the propaganda of reducing fat intake, at the cose of my meals not containing enough protein.

             Exercise, with a reasonable amount of protein in the diet, will result in more muscle. Exercising existing muscle pulls glucose out of the blood and stores it in the muscle. Reducing the amount of carbohydrate you eat will result in a lower insulin level, and that should give your pancreas a rest so that it becomes more responsive to high-glucose levels in the future.

             The term "metabolic syndrome" is quite helpful, since it reflects the fact that blood pressure often rises, and that the "pre-diabetic" condition often involves fat increases resulting in being overweight or even obese. Fat actually excretes hormones that influence how much you eat, and which foods you prefer.

              If your life is mainly sedentary (say less than 3 hours a day on your feet), you don't really need bread, potatoes, sugar and especially rice. If you drop these, your blood glucose level will fall. If you exercise either just after or just before a meal, it should also drop, and that will give your arteries chance to be repaired. Diabetes is not a disease you catch, where bacteria or virus multiply enormously in your body, it is a metabolic imbalance arising from a lifestyle that is very different from the one we evolved to tolerate.


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    • Posted

      Hi John

      Thank you for such a well explained and helpfull summary of diabetes.

      I have learnt a lot from your post. I need to take your advice and eat better and make execise a daily part of my life instead of a weekly effort. Good health to all.



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  • Posted

    You will already have known about the necessary changes to your diet Mary, as your doctor will have no doubt had a chat with you about this and given you leaflets outlining what you should and should not eat.

    One very important point that John makes, is that it does not follow that someone diagnosed as pre-diabetic will necessarilly contract full-blown version of the disease.

    This is why doctors generally shy away from recommending the purchase of their patients own blood-glucose meter at this stage, as it can lead to unnecessary concern and worry for the patient.

    So to sum-up then Mary, please stop putting too much value on your individual BG readings now.  Pay attention to your diet, and try to get some exercise every day, and finally trust your medical professional to put you on the right path and if in doubt, consult your doctor.

    All the best

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  • Posted

    When I was borderline diabetic, my doctor advised me to "avoid processed food", but this did not really register with me. I was an engineer, and designed processing system, and wasn't the industrial revolution about taking the small scale cottage industries and turning them into industrial processes?

    What my doctor did not tell me was that processed food contains a lot of additives, and is usually deficient in some nutrients and particularly protein which is more expensive than carbohydrate. I actually switched to "Healthy Alternative" packaged meals. I went from being "insulin resistant" to being borderline diabetic over a 5 month period. I had also bought into the "save the 3rd. world" argument that we should all eat less meat. But you can only live on beans (which are fairly high in protein) if you are working several hours a day in manual labour. I dropped the packaged food, ate chicken, turkey and fish, dropped the carbohydrate, took exercise, and got better very quickly.

    I hope this tells you enough so you can ask your doctor the right questions.

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  • Posted

    Hello Mary

    A quick word about BG values. 7.0 mmol/L is what GPs define the onset of diabetes type 2. Now, you are not going to get exactly this every time you test because your BG levels go up and down during the day. However, there are other cut-off points in you glucose levels; they are 4.0 mmol/L which marks the onset of hypoglycaemia  - too litle glucose with the possibility of 'hypos' and the other is 11.0 mmol/L which marks the onset of hyperglycaemia - too much glucose. I've been told to test (1) just before a meal and (2) 2 hours after a meal by which time your BG values should have returned to an 'average' value for you. This should be 7 or less but not so low as to give you a 'hypo' attack. 'Hypos' are not pleasant but can be easily fixed by swallowing glucose tablets and then eating a sandwich with brown/granary bread. This shouild bring it under control in under 30 mins. If your reading are consistently high - above 7 and touching 11 mmol/L then you will have too mch glucose fizzing round you and you should be taking steps  to stop this from happening. Diet and exercise are the basic remedies but in the shorter term your GP may put you on tablet medication to help reduce these high levels.You should really want to take control of your diabetes and not let it alarm you at all. I was diagnosed 10 yrs ago but dietary care + glicazide tablets have kept me well in managing my condition. Don't hesitate to see your GP because they are seeing so many diabetics presently that they are becoming more and more aware of how indivdual patient's management is progressing.

    All the best

    Alastair Knox

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  • Posted

    I wonder mary why you bought a monitor? It cannot have been recommended by your GP as he would have provided it on the NHS. (Presuming you are British) Personally, I would not and did not get one without the doctors recommendation. I was diagnosed with diabetes 3 years ago and my blood tests were a bit problematic for 2 years before that although I was never told I was prediabetic. I did not go on tablets till last May but was not given a monitor until I went into hospital last September for an unrelated matter and my BG was found to be around 16.1 most days first thing. Even after that I was told not to take BGs regularly as it would cause too much anxiety, only to do so  if my prednisolone (steroids) were increased. So I did not take readings regularly until New Years Eve when I felt really ill and when I did test found it was 30.4 in the morning. I was then put on an additional new medication that day which was gradually increased. I had to initially monitor 4 times per day for a week, then once per day in the morning for a week and since then once per day at different times of the day. I have to give the doctor these readings in a. telephone appointment from the doctor once per fortnight. When I was told to do these readings I was told what were the parameters eg under 4 meant I was becoming hypoglycaemic (blood glucose too low), 4-7 what I should be aiming for, and  over 7 still not controlled. I truly believe that there is no point in taking blood sugars unless you know what the parameters are, as it just causes undue anxiety. If you really feel you need to monitor your BG levels please talk to your GP or practice nurse and ask them for what levels you should be aiming for. I hope this personal experience is helpful as it has s very recent.
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  • Posted

    Monitors are cheap, ergonomic and appear quite accurate.

    The strips to go in them are expensive.

    I learnt a lot about blood-glucose control with the monitor that I bought, and I experimented with vigorous gardening at different times in the day to see the effect.

    I had an exercise machine, called a Cardio-Glide, which is a little like a rowing machine. If I did 200 operations on that, my blood-glucose fasting level the next morning would be right down, from around 6.8 to 5.8. I found a paper by Goodyear and Kahn on the effect of exercise on GLUT4 levels in the muscle cells. GLUT4 is released both by insulin, and by exercise, and it causes the muscle to take up glucose.

    The papers say that the effect of exercise should last for up to 3 days, but I needed to exercise every day to keep my blood-glucose down. I reasoned that I was catabolising back GLUT4 which is a protein, during the night. So I started eating 500gm. of turkey a day, and I found that even without the exercise, my blood-glucose was dropping.

    I have since passed 3 glucose load tests at well below the diabetic level. Nowadays I eat plain meat and not processed foods, and have eliminated most carbohydrates from my diet. I eat 600gm. a day of raw or lightly steamed greens.

    I go for brisk 35 minute walks at least 3 times a week, and have recently started jogging up the hills, which has caused my blood pressure to plummet, almost to the level of a 20-year old.

    More exercise, reasonable amounts of meat, and low carbohydrate, and diabetes will disappear and you won't need pills.

    The greens help your body to repair any damage done to the small arteries by the high glucose level. I was diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy 4 years agon, even though I was not diabetic. I think the damage had been done whilst I was marginally diabetic around 2002. After that diagnosis I upped the greens a lot, and pushed the carbohydrate right down, and 9 months later the retinopathy had disappeared. The last annual retinal photograph showed just one dot.

    Lifestyle change is the answer.

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  • Posted

    Strangely enough Mary I took a phone call this morning from Lifescan asking how I was getting on with my Lifescan Ultra Easy BG meter.

    I said that I found it easy to use and, and with the added feature of being able to download cumulative readings to my computer I was happy with it.

    They asked me if I was still controlling my Diabetes through diet and exercise, to which I replied that I was now having to take medication, namely Lingliptin.

    They then went on to ask me if I would like them to send me one of their latest Vareo meters completely free of charge. This came as a complete surprise to me as they had supplied me with the the original meter (still working fine) also free of charge. So I have taken them up on their kind offer with gratitude.

    So from this experience I have reason good to believe that certain manufacturers, and certainly Lifescan, are still giving away meters to people who have Diabetes, whether it is treated by diet and exercise, medication or insulin.

    I do hope that this information reaches those who are about to purchase their own BG meters.

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