One of the most common blood tests performed is the blood glucose test. It measures the level of glucose in the blood. Glucose is a simple sugar essential for energy production in living organisms. But higher or lower glucose levels can indicate severe medical conditions if chronically high blood sugar levels are not treated. They can lead to blindness, kidney damage, heart disease, and other life-threatening illnesses. Since extremely low blood sugar can cause seizures, coma, and even death, doctors consider it a medical emergency.
Different types of blood glucose tests are carried out. One of these is the blood glucose fasting test. Read on to learn more about the blood glucose fasting test and how it is performed.
What is blood glucose, and how does it work?
The primary sugar found in the blood is called glucose. Your body converts the carbohydrates in food and liquids into sugar. When you eat or drink them, it gives you energy. Cells absorb glucose with the help of the hormone insulin, and the pancreas creates insulin. Insulin also aids the body in storing blood glucose for later usage. The blood’s levels of glucose and insulin fall when blood sugar is metabolized by the cells.
However, your body may sometimes have difficulties controlling glucose levels. Your body either doesn’t handle insulin well, or your pancreas doesn’t produce enough of it. Your blood sugar level is thus becoming higher than usual. It leads to a chronic health condition called diabetes.
Doctors frequently request a blood glucose test to help identify diabetes. Various glucose test types can be used at a certain moment in time to determine blood sugar levels. For instance, eating causes blood sugar levels to rise. A blood glucose test is also used to manage diabetes in those already diagnosed. Diabetes can be diagnosed and managed using a variety of tests. The A1C test, the blood sugar fasting test, the glucose tolerance test, And the random blood sugar test are examples of these.
What is the blood sugar fasting test?
The blood sugar fasting test checks for diabetes, prediabetes, or gestational diabetes (during pregnancy). It is a quick, routine test known as a fasting blood glucose test. Your blood sugar is measured after an overnight fast (not eating). Fasting blood sugar levels are generally divided into three categories.
When do you need a blood sugar fasting test?
Type 2 diabetes, gestational diabetes, and prediabetes frequently start without symptoms. Even if they are affected, a person may not be aware of it. Typically, doctors will request a blood sugar fasting test:
- It is a routine component of getting a yearly physical to track how someone’s blood sugar changes over time.
- To make sure that pregnancy hormones aren’t making pregnant women diabetic.
- When someone has diabetic symptoms, a family history of diabetes, or diabetes risk factors (such as obesity).
- When a person’s blood glucose level has previously been higher than usual.
How do you prepare for a blood sugar fasting test?
Before testing, you must abstain from drinking or eating anything other than water. The fasting period ranges between 8 to 12 hours. Your doctor will specify the length of the fast. Plan to get tested early in the morning. This way, you can avoid having to fast through the day. Fasting is necessary before this test, yielding more precise results for your doctor to interpret.
What do the blood sugar fasting test results indicate?
The blood sugar fasting test results will be reported as a number:
- The normal level of fasting blood sugar is 99 mg/dL, and under
- Fasting blood sugar levels between 100 and 125 mg/dL typically suggest prediabetes.
- It indicates that even though your blood sugar levels are higher than typical, you are not yet diagnosed with diabetes.
- Elevated blood sugar, the main sign of diabetes, is 126 mg/dL and above.
Your doctor could repeat the test if your fasting blood sugar level is high. The doctor would advise you to retake the test every year or two if the result indicates you have prediabetes. You can use the results to determine if you are developing Type 2 diabetes.
Can a blood sugar fasting test be done at home?
Blood sugar can be tested at home using certain kits. However, they shouldn’t be utilized to diagnose diabetes. Results from tests performed by a healthcare professional are frequently more accurate. The accuracy of the tests done at home can be impacted by various factors, including:
- Environmental circumstances.
- The skin on the pierced finger is unclean.
- Defective or old test strips.
- There was insufficient blood in the test sample.
Blood test kits for at-home use are designed to aid those who have already been diagnosed. They assist those with diabetes in managing their disease and comprehending the influences on their blood sugar levels. Different types of blood glucose tests are carried out. One of these is the blood glucose fasting test. Read on to learn more about the blood glucose fasting test and how it is performed.