Managing Your Blood Glucose Ups and Downs
High blood glucose is the defining characteristic of diabetes: It’s what leads to a diagnosis of diabetes, and it’s what can lead to long-term diabetes complications if sustained over time. Consequently, the medicines prescribed to treat diabetes lower blood glucose in one way or another. Exercise, too, usually lowers blood glucose, which is one of the reasons it’s an important part of a diabetes treatment regimen. But too-low blood glucose, or hypoglycemia, is no good, either, since it can cause you to lose consciousness.
“Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other.” — Abraham Lincoln
Food raises blood glucose level, and certain other things can, too, such as illness and other forms of physical or mental stress. The challenge of managing diabetes, therefore, is to balance all of the things that can raise blood glucose (including the diabetes itself) with those that can lower it, so that your blood glucose level stays within a fairly narrow range. Staying in this range will not only help to prevent complications, but it will enable you to feel your best, both mentally and physically.
So what is that range, and how do you stay there?
Recommendations for blood glucose targets
Both the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the American College of Endocrinology (ACE) have published recommendations regarding target blood glucose ranges. The ADA recommends aiming for a blood glucose level between 70 and 130 mg/dl before meals and a level lower than 180 mg/dl two hours after the start of meals. The ACE recommends a goal o Continue reading