Diabetes: Know your numbers
Having diabetes involves keeping a daily record of your blood sugar levels. Measuring your blood sugar is the only way to know if your blood sugar is too high, too low, or just right. You can check your blood sugar level with a fingerstick test using a blood sugar meter. This can help you manage your diabetes day to day or even every few hours.
Your blood sugar level can vary due to stress, exercise, what you eat, and when you take your medications. So what should your blood sugar numbers be?
Fasting or before a meal: 80 to 130
Two hours after a meal: 180 or lower
At night before going to sleep: 100 to 140
Your healthcare provider may change these numbers to others that are indicated for your situation. If your blood sugar is still higher than it should be, it can cause damage to different parts of your body. It is important to treat this problem quickly and lower your blood sugar levels to levels that are right for you.
The A1C blood test shows how well your diabetes treatment is working. You should have an A1C test at least twice a year, according to the American Diabetes Association. Most people with type 2 diabetes should keep their A1C levels below seven percent. If the levels are higher, you should talk to your doctor about your treatment.
People with diabetes are more likely to have heart disease. If you have diabetes, try to keep your blood pressure below 140/80 mmHg. Taking blood pressure medicine, maintaining a healthy weight, and eating healthy foods can help keep blood pressure under control.
It is important to control your cholesterol when you have diabetes.
Your total cholesterol level should be below 200.
Your total LDL (bad) cholesterol level should be below 100.
The HDL (good) cholesterol level should be greater than 40 for men and 50 for women.
Avoid fried foods and saturated fat to keep cholesterol levels in a healthy range.
Waist and weight
People who are heavier and have more fat around their waists are more likely to have heart disease. Losing even a little weight can help lower your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and other problems.