According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about one out of 11 people in the U.S. have diabetes, and one out of three people have prediabetes. And of the adults living with diabetes, nearly one in four didn’t even know they had the condition.

Diabetes is a serious disease that can cause heart attack, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, or loss of feet or legs. Prediabetes means your blood glucose (sugar) is higher than normal, but not yet diabetes. However, if not caught early or controlled, 15 percent to 30 percent of people with prediabetes will develop Type 2 diabetes within five years.

The good news is Type 2 diabetes can be delayed or prevented in people with prediabetes through effective lifestyle programs. With modest lifestyle changes – including healthy eating and increased physical activity – men and women can decrease the likelihood of developing Type 2 diabetes.

Tiffany King

Risk factors for diabetes

  • Being overweight
  • Having a parent or sibling who has Type 2 diabetes
  • Lack of physical activity (fewer than three times per week)
  • Some ethnic groups are at a higher risk for Type 2 diabetes

Test your risk

The CDC’s Online Prediabetes Screening Test is a short, seven-question quiz that allows you to see if you might be at risk for prediabetes. To get an official diagnosis as to whether one may have prediabetes or diabetes, you should see your healthcare provider. Ascension sites across the United States are participating in the CDC’s National Diabetes Prevention Program, which seeks to empower people in the community to understand the risks of and be screened for prediabetes and diabetes.

Tiffany King, DNP, FNP-C, APNP is a board-certified family nurse practitioner at Ascension Medical Group at Westwood, 1901 Westwood Center Blvd. in Wausau. For more information, visit ascension.org/wisconsin or call 715-355-9775.