The Dangers of Being Pre-Diabetic

, The Dangers of Being Pre-Diabetic, Dr. Nicolle

When you have a blood test done by your doctor to check your blood glucose levels, also called blood sugar levels, it could come back as saying you are diabetic. Another option is that your blood glucose is higher than normal, but not quite in the diabetes range. This means that you are pre-diabetic. It is important that you understand what this means and what you need to do next.

, The Dangers of Being Pre-Diabetic, Dr. Nicolle

Blood Tests for Diabetes

While there are some signs of starting to develop diabetes, like fatigue and unexplained weight loss, the only way to know for sure is with a blood test from your doctor. They will test the blood sugar levels in your blood to find out if you are in the diabetes range, or if it is high enough to put you in the pre-diabetic range. This is often called borderline diabetic. If your blood sugar is above 100 and under 125, that usually puts you in the pre-diabetic range. You have type 2 diabetes once it reaches 126 or higher. There are some different tests that are done, including an oral glucose tolerance test and fasting plasma glucose test.


Its Affect on the Body

Being pre-diabetic is good and bad news. While you don’t yet have diabetes, you are at a higher risk for getting it. However, it is good news because it is a warning sign that you need to start living a healthier lifestyle in order to avoid getting diabetes. This is the time when you need to understand how it can affect your body, and that watching your diet and exercising regularly can help you avoid full-blown type 2 diabetes.


Common Risk Factors

If you have pre-diabetes based on high blood sugar levels, that is not the only risk factor. You might also have some other risk factors that may also increase the likelihood of you developing type 2 diabetes. This makes it even more important to understand how you can prevent it. Some common risk factors include being an older adult, obesity, poor diet, lack of regular exercise, genetics, and having an unhealthy lifestyle in general.


How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes

Take a look at the risk factors to determine how you can prevent type 2 diabetes if you are pre-diabetic. This includes eating a healthy diet, losing weight, exercising more often, and seeing your doctor on a routine basis for blood tests.

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, The Dangers of Being Pre-Diabetic, Dr. Nicolle


I wanted to talk about this topic because it is absolutely possible to prevent and even reverse Type 2 Diabetes (but you cannot reverse Type 1).  Yes, it’s possible! and emerging studies looking at lifestyle medicine and prevention support this! But I always tell my patients that you must be dedicated and diligent in adopting a healthy lifestyle to get the best results. You can create certain behaviors and practices that will not only enrich your life, but that you can pass on to your family, friends, and community, to help break the cycle of this chronic disease so that you can leave a legacy of health to your loved ones.


I use lifestyle medicine as the first line of treatment, before medications, to treat lifestyle-related chronic diseases. Lifestyle-related chronic diseases include diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and some cancers, just to name a few. Lifestyle practices, such as eating a whole-food plant-based diet and regular physical activity, can help you improve your blood sugar levels, maybe reverse type 2 diabetes. In certain cases, these approaches may even outperform pharmaceutical therapy. But I always tell my patients that conventional medications may be appropriate at this time to prevent catastrophic illness, but over time, you can work to make the necessary lifestyle changes to possibly reduce and/or eliminate medications. Please remember to always consult your physician for your particular needs and circumstances prior to making any decisions whatsoever.


Tools For Diabetes Prevention and Monitoring

Blood Sugar Monitoring

As you know, I always stress the importance of taking control of your health. Monitoring your blood sugar levels is one of the best ways to do this. To do this, a single drop of blood is collected with disposable lancets and placed on a disposable test strip, which you insert into a home blood-sugar monitoring device, called a glucometer.


The common times for checking your blood sugar are when you first wake up (fasting), before a meal, 2 hours after a meal, and at bedtime; however, you should check your blood sugar as many times a day as your health care team suggests.


Monitoring your blood sugar level provides you and your doctors with important knowledge about how food, activity, medication, stress, and other elements might affect your blood sugar levels. This data will assist you and your doctor in developing a therapy plan that is suited to your demands.


There are several types of blood glucose meters, lancets, and test strips to choose from. I often recommend this glucometer, lancets, and test strips.


Weight Monitoring

Since weight management is very important in combatting chronic diseases such as diabetes, I recommend that you be mindful of your weight and its fluctuations, and that you monitor your weight AT LEAST on a weekly basis. I recommend a scale that includes a body composition monitor (*this scale cannot be used with a pacemaker or other implanted devices).


Physical Activity

Physical activity (or exercise) can improve your health and reduce the risk of developing several chronic diseases like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cancer, just to name a few. Physical activity actually improves insulin sensitivity. Physical activity can improve your mood, boost your immune system, and even help you maintain a healthy weight.


I often recommend yoga and resistance training for physical activity, but as you are aware, there are plenty of forms of “movement” that you can do! But for the basics, especially if you’re just getting started, yoga and resistance training are where I would start.



Yoga can be a great way to improve your strength and flexibility, manage your stress, improve your heart health, and lose weight! I recommend using a grounded yoga mat to connect yourself with the earth and reduce inflammation.


Resistance Training

Resistance training is the mainstay for overall health. It not only has beneficial effects on reducing body fat, it also increases muscle size and strength. Here are some basic dumbbells/free weights that I recommend to everyone.


Another alternative for dumbbells/free weights are resistance bands. They are great for physical therapy, yoga, strength training, and excellent for traveling.

, The Dangers of Being Pre-Diabetic, Dr. Nicolle

Remember, living a healthy lifestyle including eating a whole foods plant-based diet and regular physical activity are the best ways to prevent diabetes. Please talk with your doctor about any complementary health approaches, including supplements, you use. Let me know what you think in the comment section below.


Stay healthy,


Dr. Nicolle


PS. I am always asked what tools and resources I recommend to help you reach YOUR health goals. Here is the ever-growing, always updated list for you.

The Dangers of Being Pre-Diabetic

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The Dangers of Being Pre-Diabetic

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