What is a blood glucose test?

A blood glucose test is a blood test that screens for diabetes by measuring the level of glucose (sugar) in a person’s blood.

Who is most at risk for developing diabetes?

The following categories of people are considered "high-risk" candidates for developing diabetes:

  • Individuals who are overweight or obese
  • Individuals who are 45 years of age or older
  • Individuals with first-degree relatives with diabetes (such as parents, children, or siblings)
  • Individuals who are African-American, Alaska Native, American Indian, Asia American, Hispanic/Latino, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islanders,
  • Women who developed diabetes while they were pregnant or gave birth to large babies (9 pounds or more)
  • Individuals with high blood pressure (140/90 or higher)
  • Individuals with high-density lipoprotein (HDL, the "good cholesterol level") below 25 mg/dl or triglyceride levels at or above 250 mg/dl
  • Individuals who have impaired fasting glucose or impaired glucose tolerance
  • Individuals who are physically inactive; engaging in exercise less than three times a week
  • Individuals who have polycystic ovary syndrome, also called PCOS
  • Individuals who have acanthosis nigricans -- dark, thick and velvety skin around your neck or armpits

In addition to testing the above individuals at high risk, the American Diabetes Association also recommends screening all individuals age 45 and older.

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