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Article by Roy Slootheer

Photography by Roy Slootheer

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Imagine you are sitting at the table with friends and family. Twelve healthy people together, enjoying each other's company. Little do you know, but 4 people that are sitting at that table are pre-diabetic or have an increased risk for pre-diabetes. Are you one of the 4? Is it your best friend sitting next to you?

According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control) 1 in every 3 Americans is pre-diabetic without even knowing it. Currently there are 88 million people in the USA that are pre-diabetic but 84% do not know that they have it.

Pre-Diabetes is a condition in which a person has increased blood sugar levels, but not high enough to be diagnosed with type II diabetes. Frequently these patients do not have any symptoms until it is too late; by the time symptoms arrive, the patient is no longer pre-diabetic, but has full blown Type II Diabetes. Some symptoms include: excessive thirst, excessive urination, excessive eating, fatigue, blurred vision, frequent urinary tract infections, frequent yeast infections, and frequent skin infections (symptoms are not limited to the list provided here, there are many more but these are most common).

The most common risk factors for pre-diabetes are: being overweight, being older than 45 years old, having a parent or sibling with diabetes type II, or being active/exercising less than 3 times per week. For women, there are two additional risks: if you were diagnosed with gestational diabetes during pregnancy or if you have polycystic ovarian syndrome.


The solution or prevention of pre-diabetes or diabetes type II initially starts with lifestyle changes. The changes start with a daily exercise program and some dietary changes. Does this mean that you have to hang in the gym 3 hours a day and eat nothing but carrots and broccoli?

NO! Absolutely not. It means that you should start doing more than what you are doing at this point in time. Start with a 30min/day brisk walk and start to eliminate some of your bad dietary habits (sugar/snacks/chips/fried food/etc).


A simple blood-test can determine if you are pre-diabetic or not. There are two different tests that can be completed: a blood glucose level or a hemoglobin A1C test. The blood-glucose level test determines the level of the current glucose level in your blood. When fasting, it should be less than 100. The Hemoglobin A1C test (also known as the HbA1C test) will determine your average blood-sugar level over the last 10-12 weeks. The HbA1C test is much more accurate and should be less that 5.7%.

At our clinic we offer both tests in-house (some facilities will send out the HbA1C-test to the lab for results). With a simple finger-stick, we will collect a couple of drops of blood to run these tests and you will have your results in 15 minutes or less. You can walk in or make an appointment. Visit our website.

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