‘Tis the season — the season of eating, that is! We all get excited about our favorite foods when the holidays come around. There’s just something special about sharing a meal with family and friends, often with beloved family recipes that have been passed down through the generations. And there’s nothing wrong with enjoying a special meal with loved ones. The problem comes when these meals are high in unhealthy fats, added sugars and other not-so-good-for-you ingredients. Not to mention the fact that the spirit of the season has come to include a tradition of rampant over-indulgence in our favorite holiday treats. (Seconds, anyone? Leftovers tomorrow?) This time of year is especially difficult if you have diabetes or prediabetes. You may want to reach for that pumpkin pie, but it is imperative to your health that you keep your sugar levels under control. So how can you enjoy the season and all the delicious foods it has to offer while keeping your health in check? Knowing your sugar levels ahead of time will help you decide what is safe to eat and what you should avoid.
Why should you check your sugar levels?
If you have diabetes or prediabetes, you know how important it is to keep your sugar levels down. Insulin is a hormone that helps get glucose (sugar) to your cells to use as energy. With diabetes, your body does not make or use insulin well. Without insulin, the glucose remains in your blood, raising your blood glucose (blood sugar) levels. Having high blood sugar can cause a number of serious problems to your health including, damage to your eyes, kidneys and nerves as well as heart disease, stroke and even the need for amputation.
One of the best ways to keep your blood sugar levels in check is to stick to a diabetes-friendly diet that limits foods high in sugar, fat, salt and carbohydrates. Everyone’s body is different, and it’s best to consult with a dietician to find a meal plan that’s right for you. But before you can know what you can and can’t eat, you need to know your blood sugar levels. This will give you an idea of how well you are managing your diabetes or if you are in danger of becoming diabetic.
The best way to know your sugar levels? Get tested!
If you are unsure of your blood sugar levels and you are concerned about your health, it is best to get tested before that big holiday dinner. When you are aware of your health, you can be proactive about preventing any serious problems. Would you rather have that second helping of sweet potato casserole or keep your left foot? It may sound extreme, but this is the situation you could be facing if you don’t keep your sugar levels under control as a diabetic or prediabetic. But if you want to take control of your health, you’re in luck! Any Lab Test Now has several testing options to help you monitor your blood sugar levels quickly and easily, no appointment necessary!
The Hemoglobin A1c Test is a valuable measure of the overall blood glucose levels over a period of time (two?three months). This test can be used to help detect prediabetes and diagnose diabetes. If you’re diabetic, this test can help determine if your disease is under control.
The Glucose (Serum) Test, also known as the Fasting Blood Glucose Test, is the most common test used to diagnose hyperglycemia (higher than normal levels of blood sugar), hypoglycemia (lower than normal levels of blood sugar) and diabetes. Diabetics self conduct this test multiple times a day to monitor their blood glucose, which is conducted as a finger stick and measured with a home glucometer. This test will determine if your blood glucose level is within a healthy range. It will also screen for, diagnose and monitor prediabetes, diabetes, hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia.
The Diabetes Maintenance Panel is an effective panel for both diabetics and for those who want to see if they have diabetes. This panel includes four tests: The Complete Blood Count (CBC), the Fasting Glucose, the Hemoglobin A1c and the Diabetic Urinalysis. The information gained from the four tests in this panel will give you and your physician the necessary information to help monitor and/or adjust your diabetic medications.
Talk to our experts at Any Lab Test Now to find out which test is right for you! The sooner you know your blood sugar levels, the sooner you can take control of your health this holiday season.