Average blood sugar level, also known as blood glucose level, is checked by diabetics on a daily basis. It’s also a biomarker that can be measured with a Choose Health at-home blood test. But why would someone who hasn’t been diagnosed with diabetes want to measure their average blood sugar level?
As the name suggests, your blood sugar level is a measure of how much sugar is circulating in the blood. The concentration of sugar can indicate if cells in the muscle, fat and organs such as the liver are responding to the hormone insulin. If the response is inhibited, the cells do not absorb glucose efficiently, resulting in a rise in blood sugar level.
As it turns out, everyone can benefit from being in touch with their blood sugar level. The most important thing average blood sugar reveals is how likely you are to develop diabetes or if you’ve already begun to develop it.
Pregnant women can also test their blood sugar levels to ensure they haven’t developed gestational diabetes, which can lead to type 2 diabetes after pregnancy.
Diabetes can be managed with medication and lifestyle changes, however, the best case scenario is to catch glucose intolerance issues before they develop into diabetes. One way you can do that is by measuring and monitoring your average blood sugar level.
What is Considered Average Blood Sugar?
Before you can know what average blood sugars tell you, it’s best to know what is considered average. That all depends on the timing. Blood sugar is continuously fluctuating, and it’s heavily influenced by when and what you eat.
The average blood sugar levels for an adult without diabetes is:
- Fasting blood sugar level of 70 to 99 mg/dL.
- An hour after eating the blood sugar level is below 140 mg/dL.
- A few hours after eating the blood sugar level drops below 120 mg/dL.
However, there are other factors that influence blood sugar levels. Age is one such factor. Both children and individuals over 65 years old have slightly different scales for what’s considered average blood sugars.
What a High Average Blood Sugar Level Tells You About Your Health
If your average blood sugar level is higher than normal it suggests that you’re at higher risk for developing diabetes. You may even be prediabetic or have already developed type 2 diabetes. In children an abnormal blood sugar level could be a symptom of type 1 diabetes.
You are considered prediabetic if:
- Fasting blood sugar level is 100-125 mg/dL.
- A few hours after eating the blood sugar level is between 140-199 mg/dL.
Someone with uncontrolled diabetes will have significantly higher blood sugar averages. For those people:
- Fasting blood sugar levels will be 126+ mg/dL.
- A few hours after eating the blood sugar level will be over 200 mg/dL.
If your average blood sugars are high there’s a likely chance your insulin levels are high as well. When a person develops insulin resistance, their muscle, fat & liver cells do not respond to insulin, and as a result, don’t take in blood sugar. Over time the concentration of insulin and glucose circulating in the blood increases.
What a Low Average Blood Sugar Level Tells You About Your Health
Having higher than average blood sugar levels is certainly concerning, but what about low blood sugar? Glucose levels below 70 mg/dL is considered low blood sugar.
Ironically, low blood sugar is also common if you have type 1 diabetes.
If you take an at-home blood test and the glucose level comes back low, don’t worry just yet. The numbers could be low from malnutrition or fasting. Typically, you only have to fast for 8-10 hours before a blood glucose test. Fasting more than 12 hours may cause your blood sugar level to temporarily dip.
Now you can keep track of your average blood sugars, insulin levels and more from the comfort and convenience of your home. Choose Health makes it easy and affordable to use customized at-home blood tests that are just as accurate as whole blood testing.