Thursday, February 14, 2008

Do You Know Your Quality Of Life Test Results?

Do You Know Your Quality Of Life Test Results?
Studies have shown that if you have diabetes, you need to have your blood sugar as close to normal as possible.
The Quality of Life Test also known as the A1c, glycated hemoglobin or the HbA1c test. This test measures the amount of sugar that attaches to protein in the red blood cell. Because red blood cells live for about 90 days, HbA1c tests show your average blood sugar during that time over 90 days. The greater the amount of sugar in your blood, the higher your HbA1c results will be. High blood sugars over a long period of time causes damage to large and small blood vessels. This will increase your risk of diabetes and cardiovascular complications. The blood test that you do with your meter tells you what your blood sugar is for that one second of the day. There are 86,400 seconds in a day and 7,776,000 seconds in 90 days. To find out what your true average blood sugar is over 90 days, would take over 7 million test strips at a cost of 6 million dollars. Or you can get an A1c test.
Think of your HbA1c results as a Quality of Life number because the lower the number, the less chance that you will get the complications from your diabetes as kidney failure, blindness, limb amputation and heart problems. The Normal range for the HbA1c for a healthy person without diabetes is between 4.3 and 4.5%. According to the American Diabetes Association, if your HbA1c is above 7% you need to make some changes quickly to prevent the complications from occurring. The American College of Endocrinologists recommend that your HbA1c should be below 6.5% and as close to normal as possible. But if you want to reduce your risk for complications to zero, then it needs to be as close to normal as possible, which is 4.3 to 4.5 percent.
If you want to compare your A1c result with your blood sugars on your monitor so you know what your average blood sugar is over the last 90 days then the following will help you. An A1c of 8% is equal to an average blood sugar of 205mg/dL on your monitor and a 7% A1c is equal to 170mg/dL, a 6% is equal to 135mg/dL and a 5% is equal to 100mgm/dL on your monitor. For other numbers you can go to
According to a new study, if you get diabetes at the age of 50, and your blood sugars are not in control, you will probably die 10 years early and be miserable for the last 12-15 years of your life. This is all preventable!
In another study, the Epic-Norfolk study, they took 9000 people and compared their A1c results. What they found is that for those people with an A1c of 6 percent compared to those with an A1c of 5%, there was a 28 percent increase in cardiovascular death, regardless whether they had diabetes or not.
According to the Standards of Care from the American Diabetes Association, if you have diabetes or even prediabetes, your doctor is supposed to do an A1c test 2-4 times a year. So just call your doctor and ask for the last couple of lab reports and see what your A1c was.
There is no reason for anyone to have an A1c above normal with all the knowledge we have and with all the medications we have available today.
The A1c test can also determine just how smart your doctor is. If you A1c is above 6%, then your doctor is not doing his job. He may not understand all the new treatments available to you. Remember your doctor is not trained in nutrition or in providing you an exercise program.
Know your Quality of Life number today, and prevent the complications from diabetes tomorrow. Ask your doctor or educator today, don't wait.
For more information on diabetes visit