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Recommended Blood Glucose Numbers

What are the Right Numbers?

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Updated November 09, 2010

Depending on where you look, recommended blood glucose levels can vary. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) numbers differ from the American College of Endocrinology (ACE) guidelines. The ACE recommendations are more strict than the ADA's. How do you know which to follow? Ask your healthcare provider which goals are right for you. The table below compares the two sets of guidelines for blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol.

How many times a day should you check your blood glucose levels?

Checking your blood glucose levels often throughout the day will help you to figure out how to keep good control. First thing in the morning before breakfast, two hours after a meal and before bed are good times to test. Other recommended times include before, during and after an exercise session, especially if it is strenuous or if you are feeling like your blood sugar may be low or high.

What is the A1C?

It's a blood test that helps you and your doctor monitor your overall glucose control. It gives an average of the amount of glucose in your blood over a few months' time. It is usually ordered 2 to 4 times a year. If you are newly diagnosed or having trouble maintaining good day-to-day control, it may be ordered more often.

Sources:

"Checking Your Blood Glucose." American Diabetes Association. ADA. 15 Dec 2006

American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists and the American College of Endocrinology, "The AACE System of Intensive Diabetes Self-Management - 2002 Update." The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists Medical Guidelines for the Management of Diabetes Mellitus. Endocrine Practice Vol. 8. 2002.

Comparing Values from the ADA and the ACE
Values ADA ACE
A1C <7% <6.5%
Before Meals 90-130 mg/dl <110 mg/dl
1-2 hours After Meals <180 mg/dl <140 mg/dl
Blood Pressure <130/80 mmHg <130/85 mmHg
LDL Chol. <100 mg/dl <100 mg/dl
Trigylcerides <150 mg/dl <150 mg/dl
HDL Chol. >40 mg/dl >45 mg/dl

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