Prediabetes means blood sugar levels are higher (fasting blood sugar level: 100 to 125 mg/dL) than normal range (less than 100 mg/dL) but not high enough to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes (126 mg/dL or higher). The affected people have some insulin resistance as this is a metabolic disorder when the body tissue cells don’t respond well to insulin in taking up glucose from the blood.
Body can’t function without energy and needs constant energy flow, so the beta cells of pancreas have to produce more and more insulin to push the glucose into the cells to burn off glucose and produce energy. Because of this resistance, pancreas beta cells get overworked producing more insulin and over the period of time many beta cells stop functioning, and this is when type 2 diabetes kicks in. It’s a dangerous phase as it can rapidly convert into Type 2 diabetes and remains with you permanently for the rest of your life.
Symptoms of prediabetes
Prediabetes, also known as borderline diabetes, usually doesn’t have any sign or symptom, so it’s difficult for most of us to identify when it’s developing in our system. According to medical science experts, one possible sign would be darkened skin on certain parts of the body like in the armpits, elbows, neck, knees and knuckles. It’s better to check out with a doctor if you see these visible darkened patches in those areas before it gets too late.
Can Prediabetes be prevented from progressing to type 2 diabetes?
While it is certain that prediabetes needs to be taken seriously by all means, there are still several methods through which you can avoid any possible development of Type 2 Diabetes or at least delay the onset of diabetes for years. Generally, it requires you to change your overall lifestyle as this is the only effective way, known to medical science, to reverse prediabetes.
Stopping Diabetes from Progressing
According to health experts and institutes like diabetes association, the most common lifestyle changes you need to make are detailed in the following:
Managing weight: Prediabetes is closely associated with the ongoing obesity issue world wide. Controlling weight has a number of health benefits and has proven to be one of the best ways to fend off from the onset of this metabolic syndrome. Being overweight and increased waist size is a primary risk factor as the more fatty tissues you have (specially around your abdomen) the more risk you have.
Watching out for your waist size is a good indicator as men with a waist larger than 40 inches and 35 inches for women tend to have more insulin resistance. This is the reason we say ‘sugar belly’ or ‘insulin belly’ when we see a pouch building up on the tummy.
So, setting up a practical weight loss goal is the first thing you can do. The goal could be losing 5 to 10 percent of your current weight in the next six months. Keeping a weight loss tracker app will surely keep you motivated in reaching your goal.
Exercise: Being more active and exercising a few times a week can improve insulin sensitivity and lower glucose level in the blood. Your muscle tissue is the main area through which glucose is absorbed into the system. Whenever you exercise, you provide your muscles the help they need to easily push glucose out of your blood and into your cells where it is burned for energy. This is the prime reason exercise would be the first in your arsenal to fight off prediabetes.
You might, of course, want to start off slow and build your way up. Increasing timing, distance, as well as intensity should come naturally over the course of time. You should consider setting goals initially. Or simplest of all, just start by brisk walking 30 minutes every day, five times a week.
You can take it further, whenever your body is ready, by hitting the gym for a full-body workout three to four times a week. If you are a person who gets demotivated easily then you can join yoga or aerobic dance classes. These classes would help to know each other along with a fellow’s feelings to work as a good motivation to keep on going. As long as you are making your body active, it’s good news in reversing prediabetes.
Healthy Eating: Having a low-fat sugar diet helps a lot. Diet high in processed foods which usually have added fats, calories, and sugar without much nutritional value is a risk factor for prediabetes.
- Having more lean meat, whole grains, fish, and fruits are good options.
- Better to have less carbs or starchy foods like bread, potatoes, pasta, noodles, rice, etc.
Also consider looking at your beverages in regards to weight management. You can cut down on several calories by just removing the extra cream or sugar off your tea or coffee. Soda pop is another unnecessary item that you shouldn’t be taking on a daily basis.
Make sure that you aren’t skipping meals. This can be disastrous as it is likely to end you up with overeating afterwards. Skipping meals and then overeating deteriorates blood sugar fluctuations more instead of helping at all.
It’s going to be tough initially, so it’s better to cut down on your excessive food intake slowly. Making small adjustments in your eating schedule won’t make you depressed and give up altogether.
Consult your doctor for more assistance and ask whether or not they would prefer referring you to a registered dietitian so you can seek more help in this regard.
Check our prediabetes diet ideas in more detail.
Improving lifestyle is the best way to reverse prediabetic and certain supplementation can come handy in fighting off prediabetic. While changing the lift styles these supplements boost and maximise your efforts. Few medically proven supplements in this regard would be Cinnamon, Chromium, and Glucomannan. Cinnamon helps lower blood sugar by increasing the glucose transport into cells just like the effect of insulin. Chromium improves insulin sensitivity thus indirectly lowers the glucose levels. Glucomannan can be very useful as well in decreasing blood sugar, if your prediabetic level is on the higher end.
Also it’s better to check your vitamin D level if you are living in Northern Europe (like the United Kingdom) or regions in the higher latitude of North America. A number of studies have found people who have insulin resistance and a low level of vitamin D may have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes (source).
Regardless of how tense you might be after finding out about your prediabetic condition, you should rest assured that you still have every chance of fighting it off. As such, start tracking your calories and hop on the treadmill to make your way towards the healthy lifestyle that you deserve. It may sound easy to say but difficult to start or maintain. Sugar or insulin belly fat is not only a big put off for many but it is the first sign of metabolic syndrome. Many of us don’t get the motivation or the right amount of energy on a day to day basis to exercise. And even with workout if you find it very difficult to lose those stubborn abdominal fats then you can use Instant Knockout fat burner.
Sohail has been searching diets and belly fat solutions for over a decade, and manage a pool of trained authors to write articles, which have helped thousands of readers to this date. He has CPD accredited Certificate in Nutrition for Weight Loss besides his MBA degree. He also owns this website, which he founded in 2013 to share his ideas and knowledge. Not to mention he has tried numerous supplements over the years and has an extensive and thorough knowledge on supplements. Besides spending time on his study, research and literature, Sohail loves swimming, gardening and travelling.