If you are diagnosed with diabetes then, you must have understood the importance of maintaining your A1C levels. You must know that your A1C levels are responsible for your average blood sugar, which is why it is always important that you keep your A1C levels in check. This will avoid from developing any kind of further complications. But the question is how to lower hemoglobin A1C levels. Before we tell you what to do and what not to, here is a quick definition about A1C.
What Is An A1C Test?
An A1C test is used to indicate the sugar levels of an individual. It also gives you the average of your blood sugar for a time period of 2-3 months. This is very vital, as it helps to know the condition of your body. Another added advantage is that the sample can be taken during any time of the day. This is unlike that of the normal Fasting Blood Sugar test. This test is reported in the form of a percentage. If the percentage is high, then it means your blood sugar is also high.
How To Measure Your A1C Test?
The red blood cells are made up of molecules called hemoglobin. The food that you eat is broken down into a simple sugar called “Glucose”. The glucose in the body attaches itself to the hemoglobin in the body which is called the “Glycosylated Hemoglobin”. Since the hemoglobin in the body has a lifespan of about 2 to 3 months, the glucose in the body also regenerates. The A1C calculates these “Glycosylated Hemoglobin” and hence the accuracy.
- For normal people, their A1C levels should be below 5.7%.
- For people with prediabetes, their A1C levels will range from anywhere between 5.7% & 6.4%.
- For people with diabetes, their A1C levels can be 6.5% or above.
1. Low Fat And Lean Protein
You must be very careful not to eat fatty food which can lead to a raise in your blood sugar. You can maybe switch to grilled, baked, steamed or boiled foods. If you are really interested in meat, you can try varieties of fish like tuna, trout, sardines, salmon and mackerel which contain omega 3 fatty acids. This is known to help in the reduction of triglycerides which reduces inflammation and helps in blood clot.
2. Eat A Lot of Vegetables
Eating a lot of vegetables like beans, carrot, asparagus, spinach, tomato, soy foods can help in enriching your body with vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein and antioxidants that will help your body stay healthy. You can use flaxseed as an oil which is a good source for adding it to salads and dressings. You can also have nuts, but since it is rich in carbohydrates, it should be taken only in moderation.
3. Include A Fruit Diet
Including fruits in your diet can help solve a lot of issues naturally. But be sure to confirm with your doctor, as to what fruits you can consume. Fruits with Vitamin A, Vitamin B, Vitamin C present along with fibre and carbohydrates, it will assist you in lowering your cholesterol levels. This also helps in keeping your heart in a good condition, avoiding further complications.
4. Regular Exercises
To maintain a stable A1C level, exercise is a must. You must develop a routine of 150 minutes of exercise a week. Whoever said that exercises is be a boring routine? Make it fun, by doing something you love like listening to music or taking your dog for a walk or jogging with your friends. The only need is to exercise, but how you do it, is up to you!
5. Set A Weight Loss Goal
You can have a check up with your doctor or dietitian, who can let you know the ideal weight to be maintained. Keep that as a goal and work towards it. Maintain a strict but full diet which will ease the process. Weight loss is an important step towards maintaining your A1C level.
6. Insulin And Medications
According to research, maintaining a healthy A1C level means that you do not miss your shots or medication. Even if you miss it for a day there can be a huge variation in your A1C level. Insulin can be given through daily shots. If not, one can use the insulin pump which is an easier way to control your blood sugar.
7. Regular Doctor Visits
Visits to your doctor is important as this will regularize your treatment. A doctor will help you in monitoring your sugar levels, blood pressure, and your medications. In certain cases, the doctors may need to fine tune your medications. This also helps show a record of your improvement.
8. A Diabetes Management Plan
Have your diabetes, planned out with your doctor. The plan may contain emergency contacts, what is to be done during emergencies, your target glucose levels and change in medications. It is better that you keep everyone on the same page to help you manage a safe and healthy A1C level.
Now, the ball is in your court and it depends on how efficiently you want to maintain your A1C level. Take time, plan things out, have a little of patience and just give it your best shot. Things will work out just fine, and you will see the difference, when your A1C levels are in control!
Come on, go for it!