From Fred Ezeh, Abuja
Glycaemia otherwise known as blood sugar level simply means the measure of glucose concentrated in the blood of any human or animal. Approximately four grams of glucose, a simple sugar, is present in the blood of a 70kg human at all times.
Whenever the blood sugar level in human body system is high, it could result in health danger and, perhaps, pre-disposes someone to diabetes. When it’s low too, it also becomes danger to the health of the affected individuals.
Lately, there are indications that cases of diabetes are on the rise, and this could be linked to unhealthy lifestyle, food consumption and other factors that have confronted human beings.
Diabetes is one of the most common metabolic conditions. In Nigeria, the prevalence varies from 0.65 per cent to 11.0 per cent. Many cases of diabetes are undiagnosed in Nigeria due to poverty and inadequate access to health care.
Data from the International Diabetes Federation indicated that over 1.7 million Nigerians are diagnosed with diabetes type 1 and type 2. There are three different stages of diabetes, namely, type 1 and 2, and prediabetes stages. Prediabetes is simply a condition in which blood sugar is high but not high enough to be type 2 diabetes. But without quick medical intervention, it could develope into type 2 diabetes within some years, if medical interventions are not provided.
Type 1 diabetes is a chronic condition in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin, and it typically appears in adolescence, while type 2 is a chronic condition that affects the way the body processes blood sugar (glucose). With type 2 diabetes, the body either doesn’t produce enough insulin or it resists insulin.
Repeatedly, doctors and other health workers have suggested regular/periodic checks on blood sugar level to ascertain its state and take appropriate action to either reduce high blood sugar level or boost it, in case it is low.
In order to get the right test result, doctors often advice that fasting blood sugar test be conducted first thing in the morning when the patient is yet to taste any food or drink for the day. But before then, the patient is advised to take their last meal by 9pm or 10 pm the previous day so they can report to the laboratory the following morning ready for sample collection.
If the test of the fasting blood sugar level is 99mg/dL or lower, then it is normal. But if the test returns 100 to 125mg/dL, then it’s an indication that the patient has prediabetes. And 126mg/dL or higher indicates that the patient has diabetes.
It’s recommended that the result of fasting blood sugar for adults should be from 90 to 130mg/dL (5.0 to 7.2mmol/L). From 90 to 130mg/dL (5.0 to 7.2mmol/L) for children, 13 to 19 years old. From 90 to 180mg/dL (5.0 to 10.0mmol/L) for children of six to 12 years old. And from 100 to 180mg/dL (5.5 to 10.0mmol/L) for children under six years old.
Medical research indicates that high blood sugar can have causes that are not related to underlying diseases. However, the research also indicated that carbohydrate foods are major causes of rise in blood sugar level. When carbohydrates are consumed, they are broken down into simple sugars. Those sugars would then enter the bloodstream. As blood sugar levels rise, the pancreas releases a hormone called insulin, which prompts the cells to absorb sugar from the blood.
Medical doctors have submitted that high blood sugar level, otherwise known as glycaemia, comes with the following signs, namely, increased thirst and a dry mouth, frequent urination, tiredness, blurred vision, weight loss, infections such as thrush, bladder infections (cystitis) and skin infections.
Medical experts have recommended that more water be taken because it helps to remove excess sugar from the blood through urine. In addition, it helps to maintain body hydration. The doctors also recommended regular exercise to stabilize the body. Diabetic patients are also advised, strongly, to manage intake of carbohydrates and eat more of fiber.
However, there are other ways that blood sugar can be reduced naturally. Doctors recommended that exercise is the best option for bringing down high blood sugar levels for people who are not prescribed insulin. Other ways to lower blood sugar levels quickly include taking missed medication, drinking lots of water, and using stress-management tools.

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