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  Shelby Leith   November 2, 2016   blood glucose, diabetes 0 Comments

National Diabetes Month: Learn the facts on blood sugar

Keeping your blood glucose levels at the right amount is important.

Velocity Care explains the importance of blood glucose levels to ensure you stay informed

November is National Diabetes Month, a time to raise awareness about diabetes and educate those affected by this disease on the importance of maintaining steady blood sugar levels. Learn the facts on blood sugar to know what signs you should look for and when to see a doctor.

What is blood glucose?

The term blood glucose refers to the sugar levels in your blood. When you eat, the food is broken down and the sugar molecules enter the bloodstream and are transported throughout your body. This sugar (or glucose) is the primary energy supply for your body, and the blood carries it to all the cells to keep your body working just as it should. In a normally functioning body, a hormone called insulin keeps the blood sugar levels in check. Insulin ensures that there is never too much or too little sugar in the bloodstream. In a person with diabetes, however, either the body produces too little insulin or it does not respond properly to the insulin, causing large fluctuations in the amount of glucose found in the blood.

Why is it important to have the right levels of blood glucose?

Having the proper amount of sugar in your blood is very important for your body to function normally. If blood sugar levels are too high for extended periods of time, damage can occur to numerous parts of your body. High levels of glucose can affect your organs, damage your nerves and harden your blood vessels. You will begin to experience symptoms such as frequent urination, headaches, dizziness, excessive thirst and rapid weight loss in the early stages.

If blood glucose levels drop too low, this can be extremely dangerous and life threatening. This means that there is not enough energy, or fuel, in your body for it to function properly. If not treated quickly, this can lead to long-term damage and possibly even death. As blood sugar begins to drop, symptoms such as sweating, shaking, nausea, dizziness, headaches, rapid heartbeat and blurred vision will occur. As sugar levels continue to drop, seizures and diabetic coma become a possibility.

What are the target ranges for blood glucose?

The target range of blood sugar for someone without diabetes is 70-100mg/dL.

The fasting target range of blood sugar for someone with diabetes is 70-130mg/dL.

The post-meal target range for someone with diabetes is less than 180mg/dL.

How can I check my sugar levels?

You can check your sugar levels at home with a small device called a blood glucose monitor. These machines require a very small sample of blood, which is obtained through a tiny finger prick. The machine then analyzes the blood sample to determine the amount of sugar found. People with diabetes should check their blood throughout the day to determine how different factors such as exercise, medication and food affect their blood sugar levels.

This November, Velocity Care would like to join the American Diabetes Association in helping to spread the word and educate the public about diabetes. If you or someone you love is diabetic and you have questions, or if you suspect that you are experiencing symptoms of diabetes or have a family history of the disease, please visit one of our urgent care clinics today for more information.

Velocity Care shares ways to get your child eating healthy

Photo credit: 123RF Stock Photo

Medical disclaimer

This site offers medical, health, fitness and nutritional information and is designed for educational purposes only. General information found on this website is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your health care professional.

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