When you think of diabetes management, you most likely are thinking of daily routines. Individuals can restore their carbohydrate metabolism to a normal state by monitoring their blood sugar levels and acting accordingly. However, there are key measurements, the ABCs of diabetes, outside of daily management that track long-term progress.
If you have diabetes, three key steps—the ABCs—can help you better manage your diabetes and lower your risk of
heart attack and
stroke. Learn about the ABCs of diabetes and keep track of your progress for each one.
The A1C test is short for hemoglobin A1C. It shows you what your blood glucose has been over the last 3 months and lets you know if your blood glucose level is under control. Controlling your blood glucose level will help prevent complications. You should get this test at least twice a year. Number to aim for is below 7.
The higher your blood pressure, the harder your heart has to work. Get your blood pressure measured at every doctor's visit and work with your doctor to set a blood pressure goal that is right for you.
Maintain a normal cholesterol level (under 200 mg/dL). Your HDL should be 40 mg/dL or higher and your triglyceride level should be 150 mg/dL or lower. LDL should be below 100 mg/dL. LDL or "bad" cholesterol builds up and clogs your arteries. Be sure to get your cholesterol tested once per year and aim for a LDL below 100 mg/dL.
If you already have diabetes, add these steps to control your diabetes:
Source: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; National Institutes of Health; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Stay one step ahead by following the ABCs of diabetes. These steps help monitor and control contributing factors to diseases and conditions related to diabetes. To learn more about living a heart healthy lifestyle, visit our resource page.
Physicians are members of the medical staff at one of Baylor Scott & White Health's subsidiary, community or affiliated medical centers and are neither employees nor agents of those medical centers, Baylor Scott & White The Heart Hospital – Plano or Baylor Scott & White Health.