The primary goal in managing diabetes is to achieve blood sugar levels as close to normal as possible. There are several subgoals:
1. Achieve primary goal without experiencing too many lows. Lows are blood sugar levels that drop below, let’s say, 75 mg/dl.
2. Achieve primary goal without experiencing much time in the high blood sugar area. High blood sugar is, let’s say. 240 mg/dl to 300 mg/dl. Anything over 300 is an emergency situation in my book.
3. Achieve primary goal and be able to eat well and satisfy hunger needs. This can mean several different things for each individual.
4. Achieve primary goal and be able to live an active and purposeful life. Again, different strokes for different folks.
Normal blood sugar’s range for a human body is between 80 mg/dl – 120 mg/dl. It may, at one time another, fall a bit below or rise slightly above. However, normal 4 hour fasting blood sugar should be around 80-100 and at most 120. Type 1 diabetics do have an opportunity to stay in the normal range for hours at a time. Some may be able to extend that for a few days. It takes great skill to achieve normal range for hours at a time. A Type 1 diabetic’s blood sugar will rise many more points after eating than a person without diabetes. That is why the upper limit of the goal’s range is 240. And the Type 1 diabetic is always in danger of falling too low. Blood sugar monitors enable us to “check” our blood sugar. Checking is just that. It is a moment in time. Multiple testing over short periods of time will reveal trending. Trending and the rate of trending is critical information to the ongoing management of the disease. A1C blood tests provide the average blood sugar over a period of 2-3 months. An A1C result of 6 represents an average 3 month blood sugar of 136 mg/dl. An A1C result of 7.0 is an average blood sugar of 172. Continue reading The Diabetes Equation