TYPE 2 diabetes causes a person’s blood sugar level to become too high – left untreated it can cause serious long-term health problems. People may show little or no symptoms of having the condition, but there are two easy ways to test for it.
Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes after type 1, but people with prediabetes – a condition that puts people at increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes – don’t often know they have it.
Many people who have type 2 diabetes don’t often realise because symptoms don’t necessarily make you feel unwell.
The NHS lists some more noticeable symptoms:
- Feeling very thirsty
- Passing urine more often than usual, particularly at night
- Feeling very tired
- Weight loss and loss of muscle bulk
But if the lifelong condition is left untreated, it can lead to damaged blood vessels, nerves and organs.
So how can you test for type 2 diabetes?
The NHS outlines two tests for diabetes – the glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) test and the glucose tolerance test.
Glycated haemoglobin test
The test tells you your average level of blood sugar over the past two to three months.
It can be carried out at any day and doesn’t require any special preparation, but can’t be used in certain situations, such as during pregnancy.
Your blood may be taken from a vein in your arm or, in some cases, a drop of blood from a finger-prick may be used.
Glucose tolerance test
This test determines where your body is having problems processing glucose.
Before having the test you’ll be asked not to eat or drink certain fluids for eight to 12 hours.
You may also need to avoid taking certain medications before the test, as they may affect the results.
Similar to the glycated haemoglobin test, a blood sample is taken and your blood glucose will be measured.
You’ll then be given a sweet glucose drink, and two hours later your blood glucose will be measured again.
The results of the test will indicate whether you have impaired glucose tolerance or diabetes.
Diabetes patients could control their blood glucose levels by eating eggs, a nutritionist has claimed.
“As a naturally low fat, low carb food which is also rich in protein, eggs are a great choice when you need to control your blood sugar levels, as part of a healthy balanced diet,” said nutritionist Dr Carrie Ruxton.
“The benefits of eggs in diabetes diets have been ignored for too long, in part because of misplaced fears about their cholesterol content.
“Now we know that foods which contain cholesterol are not the problem for most individuals – rather it is high calorie diets rich in certain saturated fats, combined with inactivity and genetics.”