What is A1C?
If you have prediabetes or diabetes, your health provider might have been advised that your A1C should be lower. Your doctor will inform you that the best goal for your A1C. How can you get there? Here are several natural therapies and tactics to try, along with taking any drugs your physician prescribes.
Can you lower it overnight? No, you cannot.
To find out why it’s essential to understand the basics and find out how you can lower your A1C. Generally speaking, your A1c aims to be lower than 7%. The exact number depends on your treatment plan. When you take action to receive your A1c in a healthy variety, you decrease your risk of complications like eye problems, nerve damage, and heart disease.
What’s A1C? Your blood contains red blood cells with a protein called hemoglobin, which carries oxygen throughout your body. Glucose (sugar) also travels through your bloodstream and may bind with hemoglobin. When the two come together, they produce what is called hemoglobin A1C, also called glycosylated hemoglobin, HbA1C, or A1C.
How are hemoglobin A1C levels measured? An A1C test measures the glycosylated hemoglobin in your blood. Your A1C is composed as a percent and gives you a sense of how well-managed your glucose levels are over a span of two to three months. It is also one of those numbers healthcare providers utilize to diagnose prediabetes or diabetes.
What do A1C levels mean?
What do low or high A1C levels mean?
Greater than average A1C levels means that there’s too much sugar in your blood. If your A1C is 6.5% or more on a first test and a repeat test, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) believes this to be a favorable diabetes diagnosis. Diabetes can increase your risk of:
The ADA sets guidelines for healthier A1C targets. For the typical, non-pregnant adult that has been diagnosed with diabetes, the ADA recommends a target A1C of less than 7 percent. Your healthcare provider may choose that you aim for a less rigorous or stricter A1C based on your medical history.
How to lower A1C
How to reduce my hemoglobin A1C levels?
It’s important to realize that lowering your A1C levels is a slow process. Your A1C test measures your average blood glucose for two to more months. That implies it can take up to 3 weeks to detect substantial changes in your A1C. There are many holistic remedies & lifestyle changes you can work on decreasing your A1C over time.
– Make a plan
Making a plan of eating three meals per day and maybe some snacks is an excellent way to begin controlling A1C levels. Additionally, aiming to eat your meals at about the same time each day will make it much easier to stabilize your blood sugars. Try not to skip meals or postpone eating your foods as far as possible.
– Healthy diet
Diet is an important element in your glucose levels. You likely know that carbs (sugars) can raise your glucose levels. However, your body also requires a certain number of carbohydrates to working correctly. A suggestion for meeting your body’s needs while maintaining carb intake in check is to eat more carbohydrates, non-starchy veggies, and low-sugar fruits. What and how much you consume factors into your blood glucose control and, in turn, affects your A1C. Realize that there’s not anyone “diet” that will work for all.
The American Diabetes Association doesn’t prescribe any one kind of eating plan. Still, many unique eating patterns, such as vegetarian, low-carb, DASH, and Mediterranean, can be useful. One option is to consult with a registered dietitian who has expertise in working with diabetes individuals. As you monitor your blood sugars after meals, you should begin to see patterns in how particular foods affect your own levels.
– Choose carbs wisely
It is hard for most people to cut out carbohydrates, and it is not the smartest thing to do from a nutrition perspective, as carbohydrate foods can and do provide essential nutrients that you won’t gain from eating only fat and protein. Take into account the kinds of carbs you consume. The carbohydrates to concentrate on are unrefined, meaning they maintain their fiber, vitamins, minerals, and other plant chemicals that promote wellbeing. These carbohydrates include whole grains, whole fruits and vegetables, and legumes (beans and peas).
– Establish a routine
Together with eating healthy carbohydrate foods comes the idea of carbohydrate control for controlling A1C levels. Overeating carbohydrates from any food source may mean increased blood sugars and a higher A1C. Aim to consume the same amount of carbohydrate at your meals and snacks every day. It is better to consult a dietitian regarding what your carb goals ought to be.
– Watch your portions
Eating too much carbohydrate is one thing; overeating fat or protein is another. Keep your eye on your parts of each of the foods you eat, especially if you’re trying to eliminate weight (losing weight, if you want to, can help decrease your blood glucose and A1C). Using the plate method or sample menus are a few strategies that will help you get on track with an eating strategy.
– Physical activity & exercise
Your body produces the insulin hormone that moves sugar from the blood into your cells. But if you have too much sugar in your bloodstream, your cells can’t absorb sugar as well as they should. This state is known as insulin resistance and is one cause of high blood glucose and higher A1C levels. Exercise is a trusted method to bring your A1C levels down since it helps jumpstart your body’s natural insulin action.
For adults with type 2 diabetes, the ADA recommends engaging in aerobic activities and strength training. These activities include walking, jogging, swimming, weight exercises. Exercise offers numerous health benefits, including a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, weight loss, increased energy, a lower chance of depression and anxiety, and lower blood sugars level.
– Weight loss
Since everyone has a different body structure, losing weight is specific to you as an individual. A study shows that weight loss of 5% to 7% might be sufficient to decrease the risk of diabetes in people that are at high risk and/or have prediabetes. If you already have diabetes, weight loss can lower your medications’ frequency or quantity. Using the diet and exercise suggestions above will help achieve these weight loss objectives.
– Lower stress levels
According to the ADA, stress and anxiety can directly affect your glucose levels. If your body is under stress, it becomes prepared to fight or run from the source of anxiety. Your body requires energy in the kind of sugar to try it, so a hormone called cortisol is released to boost the amount of sugar in your bloodstream. Since daily life can be stressful, finding ways to handle and lower that anxiety is crucial to maintaining healthy glucose levels. You may enjoy calming activities such as swimming, yoga, or meditation.
– Find a support group for diabetes self-management
Connecting with others like you in a support group can be a wonderful way to find support, stress relief, and liability. Besides, you will probably find out tips and strategies for managing your diabetes much better. Consult your healthcare provider about support groups or meetups for those who have diabetes.
Herbs to lower A1C
Herbs to help reduce blood sugar levels
Research indicates that there are common spices and herbs, probably ones you currently have in your kitchen, which have some potential positive effects on improving blood glucose.
– Garlic: Garlic cloves and powder has been used for centuries in Ayurveda for healing high blood sugar. An animal study that administered high doses of garlic to rats for four months discovered that it had a profound impact on decreasing blood glucose levels, in addition to triglycerides and cholesterol, compared to rats who didn’t receive raw garlic.
– Turmeric: Several studies have shown that garlic has a lot of benefits in lowering blood glucose. It disables several blood sugar-raising pathways also helps to increase insulin resistance.
– Aloe vera has long been regarded as a staple in ayurvedic medicine because of the vast medicinal properties. It was found in a study that aloe vera has significant qualities that help in lowering A1C levels. Aloe vera is widely available at any nursery for plants.
– Fenugreek might also help in lowering A1C levels naturally. Fenugreek is used in ayurvedic medicines quite often and is regarded as an excellent way to aid in lowering A1C levels. It’s widely available at any supermarket. The bitter quality of the food not only assists in lowering A1C levels naturally but also keeps you lean and slim since it also fights fat build-up.
– Ginger: Studies in rats with diabetes demonstrate raw ginger to have blood-sugar-lowering benefits and other diabetes-related complications like proteinuria after seven daily therapy weeks. Ginger can pose valuable benefits for diabetes-related high blood glucose.
– Cinnamon: Several studies have shown cinnamon’s ability to reduce fasting blood glucose and decrease blood glucose levels following a meal. It has also shown promise in its ability to keep a lower A1C level with time.
– Oregano & sage: One group of researchers analyzed an assortment of spices and herbs for a particular antioxidant activity that helps prevent a rise in hemoglobin A1C. They discovered that two of the herbs with the highest antioxidant levels were oregano and sage.
There are a lot of approaches to receive your A1C down. Taking medication is one way (and the truth is that lots of people with diabetes have to take drugs ), but lifestyle measures are powerful, too. Some dietary supplements such as berberine, composed of extracts from many different plants, and coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), an antioxidant, may reduce inflammation within your body. Consult your physician first. Be patient with your plan. Because your A1C level reflects your average blood glucose over several months, it is going to take that long to your A1C to fall.