Prediabetes is a lifestyle, reversible condition that if left untreated can lead to type 2 diabetes. As the term suggests, prediabetes means that blood glucose (sugar) levels are higher than normal although not high enough to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. There are no signs or symptoms of prediabetes and is usually only picked up on a blood test. Prediabetes also increases your risk of developing cardiovascular disease, heart attacks and strokes.
The risk factors for prediabetes
The risk factors for prediabetes are:
What can you do?
The great thing about this condition is that it is completely reversible through changes to a healthier lifestyle – this means improved nutrition and being more physically active. Nutrition-wise it’s important to reduce processed foods especially those high in sugar which ultimately increase your blood glucose levels and put you more at risk, increasing fibre intake and watching portion sizes. In terms of exercise, resistance exercise is a potent way to ensure you increase your body’s capacity to use the glucose circulating in your bloodstream as well as stored energy (body fat). If your body is using the energy in your bloodstream and the stored energy as well this will lead to reduced blood glucose levels after exercising. Performing resistance training on a long term basis also changes your body composition which will ultimately lead to an increase in lean mass and reduced body fat. Lean mass is active tissue and needs a constant supply of energy – thus increasing your metabolism leading to greater weight loss and usage of glucose.
Please speak to your exercise physiologist who will guide you on the most appropriate form of exercise to complete to reverse your prediabetes!