Maine Cardiovascular Health Program


High Blood Glucose

Diabetes affects many parts of the body including your heart and arteries. High blood glucose levels can harm your:

  • Heart and blood vessels
  • Kidneys
  • Nerves
  • Feet
  • Eyes

To control your diabetes, you need to know your blood glucose numbers and your target goal. Your health care provider will help set your target goal range and refer you to a Diabetes Self-Management Training (DSMT) program near you.

Two Ways to Measure Blood Glucose

  1. The A1C (A-one-C) is a lab test that measures your average blood glucose over the last 3 months. It will show if your blood glucose stayed close to your target range most of that time or if it was too high or too low. For most people, the target range is below 7%.
  2. Self-tests are blood glucose check you do yourself with a small hand-held meter and a test strip. This will show your blood glucose at the time you test.

What is the A1C Test?

It is a blood test that reflects your average blood glucose levels for the past 3 months. Your health care provider and your DSMT educator use the results to see if you need to make changes in your diabetes medicine, meal plan, or physcial activity routin to keep your diabetes under control.

How Often do I Need an A1C Test?

Your A1C level should be tested four times a year until you reach your target goal. Then you can be tested at least twice a year. You may need to be tested more often if:

  • Your results are too high
  • Your diabetes treatment changes
  • You plan on becoming pregnant

Know How to Manage Your Diabetes

Learn to control the ABC's of diabetes:

  • A1C (blood glucose average)
  • Blood Pressure
  • Cholesterol

You can do this by following a meal plan that has been made for you, be active daily, take your medicine as directed, and monitor your blood glucose on a routine basis.