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Chances are, you won't know if it you have prediabetes. It's a condition in which your blood sugar (glucose) is higher than normal, but not high enough to qualify as diabetes. In fact, even many people with diabetes have no symptoms. Because of this, the best way to determine if you have diabetes or prediabetes is to get tested. Your doctor can test for prediabetes with a simple blood test. You'll need to fast for the blood test, which means not eating anything overnight.
A prediabetes test is a good idea if you are overweight and over age 45. It can make sense to ask your doctor for a prediabetes test even if your weight is normal if you are over 45. If you are overweight and under age 45, your doctor may recommend a prediabetes test if you have other risk factors. These risk factors include high blood pressure, low HDL cholesterol and high triglycerides, a family history of diabetes, a history of gestational diabetes (diabetes that develops during pregnancy) or giving birth to a baby weighing more than 9 pounds, or belonging to an ethnic or minority group at higher risk for diabetes.
More often than not, there are no noticeable symptoms, so it's important to get regular screenings. It's generally recommended that screening for diabetes (and prediabetes) begin at age 45; earlier for those who are overweight and have at least one other risk factor for diabetes. If you haven't had your blood glucose levels checked or can't remember whether you have, talk to your doctor about a screening schedule that's right for you.
It's estimated that as many as 57 million people in America have prediabetes -- many of whom don't even know it.
Prediabetic people at higher risk of developing heart disease. Learn about blood sugar numbers and what to do about them in this video with Dr. Oz.
This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.