Contact the Bureau of Chronic Disease Prevention
What is Prediabetes?
Prediabetes means your blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough for a diagnosis of diabetes. Prediabetes is a serious health condition that increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.
86 million American adults have prediabetes. Nine out of 10 people with prediabetes don’t know they have it.
If you have prediabetes, you are 5 to15 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than people with normal blood glucose (blood sugar) levels. The vast majority of people with prediabetes do not know they have the condition. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 1 of every 3 U.S. adults has prediabetes and half of all Americans aged 65 years and older have prediabetes.
If you have any of the following risk factors, you are more likely to develop prediabetes:
- 45 years of age or older
- Have a parent, sister, or brother with diabetes
- Family background is African American, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian, Asian American, or Pacific Islander
- Developed diabetes while pregnant (gestational diabetes), or gave birth to a baby weighing 9 pounds or more
- Physically active less than 3 times a week
It is important to find out early if you have prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, because early treatment can prevent serious problems that diabetes can cause, such as loss of eyesight or kidney damage.
If you have two or more of the risk factors above, you should consider getting a blood test from a health care provider for prediabetes and diabetes.
If your test results indicate you have prediabetes you should enroll in an evidence-based lifestyle program to lower your chances of getting type 2 diabetes. Studies show that people with prediabetes can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes by losing 5% to 7% of their weight—that is 10 to 14 pounds for a 200-pound person. Weight loss should be achieved by making lasting lifestyle changes to improve nutrition and increase physical activity to 150 minutes each week.
Lifestyle change programs offered through the National Diabetes Prevention Program, which is led by CDC, can help participants adopt the healthy habits needed to prevent type 2 diabetes. Trained lifestyle coaches lead classes to help participants improve their food choices, increase physical activity, and learn coping skills to maintain weight loss and healthy lifestyle changes.
If you have or are at risk for prediabetes, lifestyle changes such as healthy eating, increased physical activity, and losing just 5-7% of body weight, can help you prevent diabetes. The Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) is an evidence-based program that can help you make lifestyle changes and prevent diabetes. Recognized DPPs are listed on the CDC registry.
Prevent Diabetes STAT
Health care providers can help patients lower their chances of getting diabetes by following the guidelines in the toolkit, Prevent Diabetes STAT: Screen, Test, Act Today.
Screen: Take the quiz to find out if you are at risk.
Test: If you are at risk, ask your doctor for a diabetes test.
Act Today: If you have or are at risk for prediabetes, lifestyle changes such as healthy eating, increased physical activity, and losing just 5-7% of body weight, can help you prevent diabetes. The Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) is an evidence-based program that can help you make lifestyle changes and prevent diabetes. Recognized DPPs are listed on the CDC registry.
Find a Diabetes Prevention Program