Blood Sugar Levels: What You Need to Know

The sugar in a person’s blood at any particular time is known as blood sugar or blood glucose levels. High or low blood sugar levels could indicate a medical complication needing medical care.

Normal blood sugar levels 

It is based on the sugar or glucose in a person’s bloodstream. Their blood sugar levels may be low, normal, or high. A basic sugar (glucose) is always present in circulation. Blood sugar levels may be checked at any time, including while someone is fasting (first thing in the morning), before eating, or just after eating. Individuals without diabetes should have fewer than 100 mg/dL of blood glucose while fasting for at least eight hours. Individuals without diabetes should have blood glucose levels between 90 and 110 mg/dL two hours after eating.

Blood sugar levels may be affected by these factors throughout the day.

  • Variation of food types and time of eating
  • Medical condition
  • Use of medicines
  • Physical exertion/ physical activity
  • Menstruation
  • Dehydration
  • Use of alcohol
  • Stress
  • Age

Those without diabetes or prediabetes should have a fastening blood sugar level of less than 100 mg/dL. Remember, the factors mentioned above and variables might cause blood sugar levels to change throughout the day.

Blood Sugar and Your Body

When glucose is present in moderate amounts in the blood, it serves as fuel for the body or body cells. However, high amounts of glucose or sugar in the blood will behave as a slow poison and are bad for your health.

The pancreas cells that produce insulin gradually lose their capacity as the blood sugar levels rise. The organ overcompensates, resulting in persistently elevated insulin levels. The pancreas suffers lasting harm over time.

High blood sugar levels may bring about changes that result in atherosclerosis or the hardening of the blood arteries.

High levels of sugar may affect almost any area of your body. Blood vessel damage results in issues like:

  • Heart attack
  • Loss of vision or blindness
  • Low immunity and high risk of infections
  • Slow wound healing
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Renal diseases, like kidney failure that need dialysis
  • Nerve damage is characterized by various symptoms like less sensation, pain and tingling in hands, legs and feet

To prevent different health issues, maintain your blood sugar close to normal levels. The American Diabetes Association recommends blood sugar levels of 70 to 130 mg/dL before meals and under 180 mg/dL after meals for patients with diabetes.

Blood Sugar Levels and Food 

The pancreas, located between the stomach and the vertebrae, works by breaking down food and secreting hormones to assist the body deal with the surge of glucose when we eat. Insulin is one of these hormones, which is essential for controlling blood glucose levels.

Sugar levels in the blood may get excessively high if the pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin or stops producing it altogether, as in type 1 diabetes. One possibility is that the pancreas produces enough insulin, but the cells struggle to use it effectively, raising blood glucose levels. It is one of the features of type 2 diabetes insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes itself.

There are many signs of high blood sugar, including thirst, frequent toilet visits, exhaustion, and weight loss. More severe problems like diabetic ketoacidosis may develop (DKA) if left untreated. Chronically high blood sugar levels may result in consequences such as nerve damage and renal, heart, and eye illness. Therefore, maintaining an average blood sugar level is crucial for a healthy life.

Medicines for Treating High Blood Sugar Levels

After monitoring blood sugar levels for a certain time, the doctor may prescribe suitable antidiabetic medicine from different classes like biguanides, sulfonylureas, meglitinide, thiazolidinedione (TZD), dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP-4) inhibitors, sodium-glucose cotransporter (SGLT2) inhibitors, and -glucosidase inhibitors.

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