Do you know what HbA1c levels are? I imagine some people who read my ramblings do. For those who don’t, here’s a quick explanation for you;
HbA1c is what’s known as glycated haemoglobin. This is something that’s made when the glucose (sugar) in your body sticks to your red blood cells. Your body can’t use the sugar properly, so more of it sticks to your blood cells and builds up in your blood. Red blood cells are active for around 2-3 months, which is why the reading is taken quarterly.What is HbA1c – diabetes.org.uk
Now, if you’re still not following, it’s a measurement taken from your blood to diagnose if you are Type 2 Diabetic – I think that’s right.
This story started for me around 3 years ago. My blood sugar levels were tested at the same time as my Thyroid levels. After those initial test I was diagnosed with Graves Disease (over active thyroid) and I was also told I was at high risk of Type 2 Diabetes.
Ever since that day I have been under the consultant for Graves Disease (hopefully resolved now without requirement of surgery though). I also have to take a yearly blood test to check on my blood sugar levels – specifically the HbA1c levels in my blood.
Since being told I was high risk 3 years ago, I have been able to keep my levels down in the ‘low-risk’ or ‘normal’ area. That was until just recently.
I was invited to my yearly test a couple of weeks ago. Now for the last couple of years my HbA1c levels have sat comfortably at 41 mmol/mol. This is just inside the ‘low-risk’ or ‘normal’ portion of the scale.
This time though my levels have shot up. Not just a little, but to 47. This is a big jump and it now firmly places me on the edge of ‘high-risk’ or ‘pre-diabetes’ to being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. I need to get this down and quick.
I met with my heath care adviser about this at my local GP surgery. We went through the sort of foods to avoid etc. most of which I remember from the DESMOND course back when I was initially diagnosed as ‘high-risk’.
When I cam home from the chat I could have cried. I felt so freaking low. I spoke a bit about it with wifey, but the news of this score really hit home. Some needed to change and quick. But then I sat and I realised. I’ve already started making the changes in the last couple of weeks. Changing from Slimming World to Weight Watchers now means I have to portion size my carbs – Carbs are a big factor when talking abut Type 2 Diabetes.
For now, I’m trying not to panic about this. If I panic about it I will start a downward spiral of my feelings. The last time that happened was around October/November last year. I don’t want that again.
Usually I would be tested again in a years time. But before leaving the health care adviser, I asked if I could be tested again sooner. As I am right on the limit of being diagnosed, I want to make sure that figure starts coming down sooner rather than later. She agreed and has booked me in for another test in 3-months.
This give me time to get things into action now. Less sugary stuff (not that I have a lot of it anyway) and less starchy carb stuff. I have more reading up to do on managing Type 2 Diabetes and lowering the HbA1c levels. But you can rest assured this is high on my list of things to do.
Some of you readers may be on this scale somewhere also. Unfortunately it’s becoming more and more common for people to be diagnosed as ‘at-risk’ these days. I will be sharing more information on managing this stuff very shortly, but for now it is research time for me.