Prediabetes: Causes, Symptoms, Risk Factors, Diagnosis and Prevention of Developing Type 2 Diabetes

Prediabetes, also known as borderline diabetes, is a metabolic condition arises when your blood glucose level (blood sugar level) is higher than normal, but it’s not high enough to be considered diabetes.

Updated: August 15, 2020

Prediabetes, also known as borderline diabetes, is a metabolic condition arises when your blood glucose level (blood sugar level) is higher than normal, but it's not high enough to be considered diabetes. Prediabetes is an indication that you could develop type 2 diabetes in future if you don't make some lifestyle changes.

Prediabetes is reversible and can be prevented by maintaining a healthy life style, Eating healthy food, losing weight and and being physically active. 

Cause of Prediabetes:

When your body begins to have trouble using the hormone insulin, the condition prediabetes is produced.  Insulin is essential to transport glucose into the cells through the bloodstream which can be  used for energy of the body.  In pre-diabetes, your body either doesn't make enough insulin or it doesn't use it well which is called as insulin resistance. If you don't have enough insulin or if you're insulin resistant,  extra glucose will be build up in your blood, leading to a higher than normal blood glucose level and the condition prediabetes

Symptoms of Prediabetes:

Weight loss:

The body uses alternative fuels stored in muscle and fat being unable to metabolize glucose leading to weight loss.

Increased thirst:

The fluid present in our tissues will be pulled by excess sugar generated in the bloodstream causing increased thirst then usual.

Increased hunger:

Due to lack of insulin sugar can't move in to your cell leading to lack of energy in muscles and organ causing increased hunger.

Frequent urination:

Increased thirst lead to drink more water hence causing frequent urination


since your cells doesn't have sufficient energy. you became tired and irritable.

Risk Factors Associated With Prediabetes:

Risk factors are the same related to the development of type 2 diabetes:


The primary risk factor for type 2 diabetes is obesity. If you are overweight, the fatty tissue will make your cell insulin resistance, developing a risk for prediabetes.

Lack of physical activity:

Physical activity helps you control your weight. Regular exercise uses up the stored glucose in your body as energy and makes your cells more sensitive to insulin. lack of exercise increases the risk of prediabetes.


The risk of prediabetes increases if you have a family history.

Dietary factors:

Consuming more junk food and sugar-sweetened drinks increase the risk of  prediabetes.
The type of fat you are consuming in your daily life plays a major role in the risk of prediabetes. Saturated fat and trans fats increases the risk and polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat decreases the risk.

Gestational Diabetes:

If you developed diabetes while you were pregnant, that increases your risk for developing prediabetes later on.

Other Health Problems:

High blood pressure (hypertension), high cholesterol (the bad LDL cholesterol) and PCOS(Polycystic ovary syndrome) increase your risk of having prediabetes.

Diagnosis of Prediabetes:

Fasting plasma glucose test (FPG) and HbA1c:

Either a fasting plasma glucose test or an HbA1c test may be used to diagnose prediabetes. If your blood glucose level is between 100 and 125mg/dL or HbA1c is  6.0 to 6.4% then you have prediabetes.

Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT):

If your blood glucose level is above 126mg/DL with the FPG test, you may have diabetes. Then you may need to undergo Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT).

Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes Development from Prediabetes:

Prediabetes that are identified on early stage  can be reversed, preventing them from progressing into  type 2 diabetes. This can be done by changing your lifestyle by managing a healthy diet and adding regular physical exercise to your daily routine.

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