Acceptable Blood Glucose Levels May Vary, Understand Them and Stay in Control
by Ola Martinsson
We have often heard doctors advising diabetics to ensure that blood glucose levels are normal. In other words it is very important to maintain acceptable blood glucose levels. The concentration of blood sugar in a mammal's blood is the blood glucose level, which is usually expected to be in a reference range between 4mmol / L and 6mmol / L. Levels higher than that range are a cause of concern and need medication as per doctor's advice. Failure to maintain normal levels leads to hyperglycemia (higher level) or hypoglycemia (lower level). Acceptable blood sugar levels cannot be specific values, and your doctor would be the best person to answer what is safe for you depending upon your health status.
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The blood glucose level varies at different times of the day. In most humans you would normally find the levels within a range of 80mg / dL to 110mg / dl ie 3.9 to 6.0mmol / L. The level goes up temporarily shortly after eating up to maybe 140mg / dL. The level is on a lower side in the early morning before you have your first meal.
Blood sugar tests and their normally acceptable blood glucose levels
* Fasting blood sugar test: The fasting blood sugar test is conducted after you fast for at least eight hours. The normal range for this test is 70 to 100mg / dL or 3.9 to 5.6mmol / L. * Random blood sugar test: This test is conducted to measure blood sugar at any point in time of the day. Though there is no specific level defined, the sugar level should not be acceptable if higher than 200mg / dL ie 11.1mmol / L. * Oral glucose tolerance test: This test measures the response of your body to sugar intake. First the fasting blood sugar level is measured. Then you are given a sugary solution and your blood sugar level is measured after 1 hour and then after 2 hours after you have the solution. This test is often used to screen pregnant women for gestational diabetes. The normal sugar level for this test is lower than 141mg / dL ie 7.8mmol / L. * A1C test (glycated hemoglobin): This test is used to gauge how well you are managing your diabetes. This test is used to measure your average blood sugar for the past two to three months. It shows what percentage of hemoglobin is sugar coated (glycated). The acceptable level for non diabetics is 4 to 6 percent. For the diabetics the normal acceptable level is lower than 7 percent. Doctors may recommend it to be 6% during pregnancy. The level more than 7 may indicate a change to your diabetes treatment plan.
It is very important to know the higher values as well. There can be different reasons for higher levels other than diabetes, like severe stress, heart attack, stroke, medicines like corticosteroids or excess production of growth hormone. Doctors may advice you to take different tests to find if you have diabetes. Usually the criteria is fasting blood glucose level of 126 mg / dL ie 7.0mmol / L or higher, for oral glucose tolerance test of 200 mg / dL ie 11.1mmol / L and other symptoms of diabetes like frequent urination, unexplained weight loss and increase in appetite, fatigue etc.
The acceptable blood glucose levels may vary depending upon your diabetes and other health conditions. Your doctor would be the best person to express the most acceptable levels. Ensure that you regularly test your sugar level and take due care, medication, exercises, and diet control to keep it within the acceptable range.
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