Everybody knows their ABCs, but if you have diabetes, there is another type of ABCs that are important to know. If you consistently monitor the ABCs of diabetes, it can help lower your risk of having a heart attack, stroke, or other complications. Learning to manage your A1C, Blood pressure, and Cholesterol are all important as a diabetic.
A is for the A1C
What is A1C? The A1C is a blood test that measures your average blood sugar level over the past three months. It is different from the regular blood sugar test that you do every day. This is important because you need to know your blood sugar levels over time. You don’t want these numbers to get too high, as high blood sugar levels can hurt your heart, kidneys, blood vessels, eyes, and feet.
The goal of A1C for most people with diabetes is to score below a seven. However, this number can be different for you – talk to your healthcare provider about what your goal should be.
B is for Blood Pressure
Blood pressure is important because if it gets too high and is left unregulated, your heart will begin to work too hard. When your heart is forced to work too hard, it can cause a heart attack, stroke, and even cause damage to your kidneys and eyes.
The blood pressure goal for most people with diabetes is under 140/90. However, this number can be different for you – talk to your healthcare provider about what your goal should be.
C is for Cholesterol
There are two kinds of cholesterol that are found in your blood: LDL and HDL. LDL or “bad” cholesterol can build up and clog your blood vessels. It can cause a heart attack or a stroke. HDL or “good” cholesterol helps remove the “bad” cholesterol from your blood vessels.
Talk to your healthcare provider about what your cholesterol numbers should be since your goal will be different from other people’s.
Remembering your diabetes ABCs is a great way to help you take control of your diabetes. If you monitor your ABCs, it will help you become more successful.