Diabetes Blood Sugar Basics
Sometimes it’s helpful to have a basic explanation about diabetes blood sugar levels. So here’s your 101 just in time for National Diabetes Month.
I’ve complied answers to some of my clients’, friends’ and readers’ most common questions about diabetes blood sugar.
Q: What should my blood sugar level be?
A: There is no single number that is right for every person with diabetes. Your blood sugar targets should be individualized based on your health status, age, how long you’ve had diabetes, your medications, risk for low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and other things. However, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) has these general targets.
Fasting & Before Meals: 80 – 130 mg/dl
1 – 2 Hours After Eating: < 180 mg/dl
Talk to your healthcare provider to learn your specific blood sugar targets. It’s to important to know that these targets are general targets for people with diabetes. They are not numbers for people who do not have diabetes.
Q: Why does my doctor want my A1C level to be less than 7%, but my mom’s doctor told her that he was pleased with her A1C level at 7.8%? Shouldn’t my mom and I aim for the same A1C goal?
A: Not necessarily. The ADA general target for A1C is < 7%. But just like we personalize other blood sugar targets, A1C goals should also be specific to the individual. Lowering A1C to < 7% reduces the risk of microvascular complications of diabetes such as nerve, kidney and eye problems. And if people with diabetes achieve this level of blood sugar control early in the course of the disease, their risk of heart disease is also reduced. Continue reading