More than 1 in 3 American adults has prediabetes: the precursor to type 2 diabetes. While prediabetes isn’t the same as diabetes, it is a serious health condition that shouldn’t be ignored.
A prediabetes diagnosis means your blood sugar levels are higher than normal. Your blood sugar isn’t high enough to be considered type 2 diabetes quite yet, but having prediabetes increases your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and other complications. About 70% of people with prediabetes eventually develop type 2 diabetes.
The good news? You can do a lot to improve your health and prevent prediabetes from turning into full-blown diabetes.
Brian Lamkin, DO, and our team at The Lamkin Clinic have nearly a decade of experience working with people to prevent and reverse diabetes. If you’ve been diagnosed with prediabetes, here’s what to do next.
Obesity is a leading risk factor for prediabetes and diabetes, and losing a small amount of weight can lower your risk. If you’re above the recommended weight for your height, working toward a healthy weight can reverse prediabetes and help prevent diabetes.
You don’t have to shed large amounts of weight to impact your health. Dr. Lamkin and our team may start by setting a goal for you to lose about 5% of your body weight, which is only about 10 pounds for a 200-pound person.
The food you eat affects your blood sugar, and a healthy diet can significantly lower your risk of diabetes. Choose to eat foods like fruit, vegetables, lean proteins, and nuts. Avoid sugary drinks, sweets, fatty foods, and processed foods with added sugars.
If you’re unsure where to start, Dr. Lamkin can offer guidance. Our diabetes program includes nutrition services to help you plan your meals for better health.
Exercise is a crucial element of a healthy lifestyle, and it can lower your risk of diabetes. Regular exercise helps you manage your weight, improves insulin processing, and uses up extra sugar in your body.
Most adults should get at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise each week. That breaks down to about 30 minutes a day, five days a week. Consider trying activities like walking or swimming, and talk with Dr. Lamkin about exercise recommendations.
Smoking increases your risk of type 2 diabetes because it changes how your body processes insulin. People who smoke are up to 40% more likely to develop diabetes than people who don’t smoke. If you’re diagnosed with diabetes, smoking increases your risk of complications like vision loss, nerve damage, and heart disease.
To lower your risk of diabetes and related complications, stop smoking. Talk to Dr. Lamkin and our team about smoking cessation support. And remember, if you don’t smoke, now isn’t the time to start.
Finding out that you have prediabetes can be scary, but it doesn’t mean diabetes is inevitable. Taking small steps to change your health now can make a big difference in reversing or delaying diabetes later.
Book a prediabetes consultation with Dr. Lamkin and our team to get started today. Call our Edmond, Oklahoma, office at 405-285-4762 or request an appointment online.