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Diabetes: Know Your Numbers

If you have diabetes, you may think your blood glucose value is the only important number, but there are others you should know. The more you know about your numbers and personal goals, the more active you can be in participating in your diabetes care.


Your A1C is a picture of your average blood glucose over the past two to three months. This number helps your healthcare provider determine if your current treatment plan is working. The American Diabetes Association recommends an A1C of less than 7% for better, long term diabetes health. This equates to an average glucose of 154mg/dL. Target glucose goals are: 80-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after the start of the meal. Talk to your healthcare provider to determine your personal glucose goals.

Blood Pressure

It is recommended that your blood pressure remain less than 140/80 mmHg to reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke, kidney disease and eye problems.


Cholesterol is a group of fats our body needs to function properly. When blood glucose levels are high, it can lower your “good cholesterol” (HDL), and raise your “bad cholesterol” (LDL). When your numbers are elevated, medications may be needed to help reduce these numbers and help you get within the recommended goal.

  • HDL- Men: greater than 40; women: greater than 50
  • LDL- Less than 100
  • Triglycerides- Less than 150mg/dL

Microalbumin Levels

A urine microalbumin test is used to detect signs of early kidney damage. This test evaluates the level of blood protein in your urine. Less than 30mg is normal. If your microalbumin levels are found to be higher than 30mg, your healthcare provider may recommend repeating the test to evaluate the best possible action.