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Q. My doctor says my blood sugar is high, and that I may be at risk for prediabetes. What is prediabetes and how can I avoid it?

A. Prediabetes is a condition between normal health and full-blown diabetes, a condition that puts you at greater risk for developing diabetes.

If you’ve been fasting for eight hours or more, and you have a blood glucose (a kind of sugar) level of 100 to 125 mg/dL, you have prediabetes. If you have a level of 126 mg/dL or greater, you have full-blown diabetes.

If you have prediabetes, particularly if your fasting blood glucose levels are in the upper part of the 100 to 125 mg/dL range, you are a considerably greater risk for developing Type 2 diabetes.

You can reduce your risk of getting both prediabetes and diabetes with the same strategies: regular moderate exercise and keeping a healthy weight.

In fact, such lifestyle changes are more powerful in preventing diabetes or prediabetes than any medicine yet discovered.

And regular moderate exercise – like 30 minutes of brisk walking at least five times a week – protects you against diabetes even if you don’t lose weight.

– Dr. Anthony L. Komaroff, editor in chief