Preventing Pre-Diabetes

It's a growing health problem. Studies show that more than three million people live with type 2 diabetes. Teresa Spano, a health consultant at Lee Health, says what you eat, when you eat, and how you feel after eating can help determine if you are living with prediabetes . "Prediabetes refers more to when fasting glucose levels are rising, you can usually see the hemoglobin A1C that is starting to rise, not necessarily in the diabetic range, but it's getting there."

Discussing a patient's sleep patterns, exercise and diet can help determine if they are at risk of developing diabetes. "There are a lot of dark areas between completely normal and actually diabetic, which is where the pre-diabetic range is really where you can help people so much before they actually reach true diabetes," said Spano.

Health experts can also use the waist-hip ratio to determine if patients are at risk. This ratio looks at how the patient is carrying his weight: on his belly or on his hips and thighs? If patients have more abdominal fat, they have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. "A lot of people just do not know they're getting close to that, which is probably the most frightening thing," Spano said.

Experts encourage healthy diets of fruits, vegetables and fiber, and limit animal proteins. "Exercise is so important when it comes to preventing diabetes, sleep is always important, stress reduction is really the core of everything you listen to to stay healthy," said Spano.

A blood test to check a patient's A1C level, triglyceride levels and cholesterol can ultimately decide if a patient is at risk for type 2 diabetes.

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Lee Health in Fort Myers, FL is the largest network of health care facilities in Southwest Florida and is highly respected for its expertise, innovation and quality of care. For more than 100 years, we have provided our community with personalized preventive health services and primary care for highly specialized care services and assisted robotic surgeries. Lee Health – Caring People. Inspiring care


Video credits to Lee Health Marketing YouTube channel

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    Preventing Pre-Diabetes

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