Pre-diabetes is a serious metabolic condition that should never be ignored. It is now estimated that 1 in 4 teens have pre-diabetes and in the total population, more than 41 million Americans have pre-diabetes. Left untreated, many will develop full blown type 2 diabetes.
Signs and symptoms of pre-diabetes are not always obvious. In fact, most people do not even know that they have the condition until a doctor diagnoses them with pre-diabetes.
A few signs some people have include excessive weight gain or the inability to lose weight, adult acne, infertility in women, high blood pressure, skin tags, and changes in the skin called acanthosis nigricans. Some women, may also suffer from alopecia. All these things can be a warning sign of insulin resistance which is associated with pre-diabetes.
Prediabetes is a condition in which blood glucose or A1C levels—which reflect average blood glucose levels—are higher than normal but not high enough for a diagnosis of diabetes. Insulin resistance increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and prediabetes.
Both IFG and impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) indicate pre-diabetes and are associated with an increase risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Lifestyle changes including weight loss and an exercise program, as well as possible oral medications are sometimes indicated.
There is no cure for type 2 (or type 1) diabetes, but pre-diabetes can often be completely reversed with proper medical intervention and changes in lifestyle.
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