The source of basic energy required for human cells is glucose. Glucose is a type of sugar that our body derives from the intake of carbohydrate foodstuffs. This blood sugar level is regulated and kept within the necessary levels by insulin, which is a hormone produced by the pancreas. Insulin is released into the bloodstream whenever the glucose levels rise beyond the normal levels. In the natural course of the day, it is observed that the blood sugar level is usually lower in the mornings. The level rises after every subsequent meal.
Normal Blood Glucose Level in Children and Adults
Fasting blood sugar level in children is said to be normal when the values are between 70 to 100 mg/dL. If the fasting blood sugar levels rise above 125 mg/dL, it is clinically diagnosed as hyperglycemia or high blood sugar. The low levels below 70 mg/dL are clinically referred to as hypoglycemia. The condition of hypoglycemia is also known as low blood sugar. It is essential to note that hypoglycemia is a fatal condition that is accompanied by symptoms such as lethargy, irritability and even loss of consciousness. The normal blood glucose levels, when not regulated naturally within the body, result in a condition called diabetes mellitus. The diabetic condition can cause eye, kidney and nerve damage, in the long run.
Tests for Measuring Blood Sugar Levels
It is very essential to regularly have a blood glucose test conducted to measure the levels of glucose in the bloodstream. This helps eradicate the possibility of diabetes, and to check for hypoglycemia. Today, there are several types of glucose tests and treatments to check and maintain the blood sugar levels. Following are some of the tests conducted to find out the normal glucose levels in the body.
Fasting blood sugar test
This test is commonly conducted to check the rise or fall in the glucose levels after a prescribed eight-hour fast. The levels are required to fall and get recorded between 70 and 100 mg/dL to be declared as normal blood glucose levels.
Two-hour postprandial blood sugar test
This test measures the blood sugar level rise or fall two hours after a meal. Normal blood glucose levels in this case, need to fall between 70 and 140 mg/dL.
Random blood sugar tests
This test can be conducted throughout the day, irrespective of the meal times. The blood sugar levels should be between 70 and 125 mg/dL to be declared 'normal' in case of random testing method.
Oral glucose tolerance test
In this test first values are taken in the fasting condition and then the person is made to consume a glucose-based drink and then again the glucose test is taken. Normal values recorded should be 60 -100 mg/dL while fasting; and 110 to 140 mg/dL if measured 2 hours after consumption of the drink. This test is very helpful in diagnosing gestational diabetes and type 2 diabetes. In case you are in any doubt about your blood sugar levels, it is best to contact your physician and sign up for testing.
Today, with our erratic lifestyles and random eating habits, there are a number of conditions that can cause a shift in the normal blood sugar levels. The diabetic condition occurs when the body can no more regulate the blood sugar levels in the bloodstream. This condition is usually due to the interruption of some sort in the production of insulin by the pancreas. Without insulin, blood sugar levels tend to increase, leading to dire consequences.
Type 1 or juvenile diabetes strikes children and adolescents, while Type 2 is a condition that affects adults. In the case of Type 1 diabetes, to achieve the desired normal blood sugar levels, subcutaneous injection of insulin is prescribed, or the use of an insulin pump is advised. In Type 2 diabetes, the body is unable to effectively use the insulin produced. The resultant demand on the pancreas for insulin ends up with the organ losing all ability to produce insulin. The symptoms of diabetes show up in the form of excessive thirst, frequent urination, and sudden weight loss. It is very important to maintain the normal blood glucose levels to eradicate the condition.
Now, there are a number of self-help gadgets too that enable you to check the blood sugar levels at home. To maintain the blood sugar levels to normal, it is essential to monitor and maintain a healthy weight, that is proportionate with your height and age. Even a five to ten percent reduction of excessive body weight can reduce the risk of diabetes.
Any kind of physical activity can also lower your blood sugar levels. A combination of physical activity and clinically approved food choice enables you to maintain the blood glucose levels to normal. It has been observed that eating excessive carbohydrates stresses out the pancreas to maintain the levels of blood sugar to normal. Regular exercise and proper nutrition are very important to keep the glucose levels under control.