Monitoring your blood sugar, also known as blood glucose, is an important way to understand how your body is managing the glucose that comes from the carbohydrate foods you consume. Through regular testing, you can determine if your blood glucose levels are within a healthy range, and make any necessary adjustments to your diet or lifestyle to keep them there. Blood glucose tests measure the amount of glucose in your bloodstream and provide a snapshot of your glucose levels at any given moment.
The body uses glucose as its main source of energy, and the hormone insulin plays a key role in helping your cells use it effectively. Insulin is produced in the pancreas, and is released into the bloodstream in response to rising blood glucose levels. When glucose levels are high, insulin helps to regulate them.
High blood glucose levels over an extended period of time can cause damage to various parts of your body, including your eyes, kidneys, nerves, and blood vessels. Therefore, maintaining a healthy blood sugar level is crucial for overall well-being and preventing potential complications.
Who Should Check?
Consulting with your healthcare provider can help you determine if monitoring your blood glucose levels is right for you. There are certain individuals who may particularly benefit from regular blood glucose checks, such as those who:
- Are taking insulin medication
- Are pregnant
- Are having difficulty reaching their blood glucose goals
- Experience frequent low blood sugar levels
- Experience low blood sugar without typical symptoms
- Have ketones present in their blood due to high blood sugar levels.
Checking Blood Sugar Levels with FBS and PPBS
Checking blood sugar levels is an important tool for managing diabetes and maintaining overall health. Two common methods for measuring blood sugar levels are fasting blood sugar (FBS) and postprandial blood sugar (PPBS).
Fasting blood sugar (FBS) is a test that measures the amount of glucose in your blood after you have fasted for at least 8 hours. This test is typically done in the morning before you have had breakfast. A normal fasting blood sugar level is between 70 and 100 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).
Postprandial blood sugar (PPBS) test measures the amount of glucose in your blood 2 hours after you have had a meal. It’s usually done after lunch or dinner. A normal postprandial blood sugar level is less than 140 mg/dL. This test is done to check for post-meal glucose spikes, which can be an indication of poor glucose control.
Both FBS and PPBS are used to diagnose diabetes and to monitor glucose control in people who have diabetes. High levels of FBS and PPBS can indicate that a person has diabetes or is at risk of developing it. The results of these tests can help your healthcare provider make adjustments to your treatment plan, such as adjusting medication dosage or recommending lifestyle changes to improve your glucose control.
Uncovering What to Expect from an FBS/PPBS Test
During a blood glucose test done by a healthcare professional, the area on the inside of your elbow will be cleaned with an antiseptic to eliminate any potential germs. An elastic band will be tied around your upper arm to make the vein more prominent, making it easier to locate and insert a sterile needle.
The needle will be inserted into the vein to collect a sample of blood. The procedure may cause slight to moderate pain, but the healthcare professional will apply pressure to the puncture site for a few minutes after the needle is removed to prevent bruising. The collected blood sample will be sent to a laboratory for analysis and your doctor will follow up with you to review the results and discuss any necessary next steps.
The results of a blood glucose test generally take 6 to 9 hours to be processed. The results will indicate the level of glucose in the blood, measured in milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).
For the Fasting Blood Sugar (FBS) test, levels below 100 mg/dL are considered normal. A higher level may indicate diabetes or prediabetes.
For Postprandial Blood Sugar (PPBS) tests, levels below 140 mg/dL are considered normal. A higher level may indicate poor glucose control and a need for adjustments in diabetes management.
As mentioned earlier, it is important to keep in mind that results are just one aspect of monitoring glucose control, and it is important to work with a healthcare provider to interpret the results and make any necessary adjustments to treatment plans.
Managing diabetes can be a challenge, but with the right tools, it’s possible to take control of your health. One such tool is a Personal Health Record (PHR) app. These apps allow you to easily store and access your health information, including your blood sugar test results. By keeping all of your reports in one place, you can easily monitor your progress over time and identify any trends or patterns in your glucose levels.
In addition to monitoring your glucose levels, PHR apps also allow you to keep track of other important health information, such as medications, allergies, and immunization records. This can help you stay organized and make it easier to communicate with your healthcare provider.
Ultimately, the key to managing diabetes is to stay informed and stay on top of your health. By monitoring your blood sugar levels regularly and keeping track of your results in a PHR app, you can take control of your diabetes and live a happy and healthy life.
The purpose of this blog is to provide general information. Whenever you are suffering from any disease or condition, please consult your doctor and take a decision based on his or her advice.