The blood sugar concentration or blood glucose level is the amount of glucose (sugar) present in the blood of a human or an animal.
The body naturally tightly regulates blood glucose levels (with the help of insulin that is secreted by pancreas) as a part of metabolic homeostasis.
If blood sugar levels are either increased or decreased by a greater margin than expected this might indicate a medical condition.
What is blood sugar?
What is diabetes?
Levels and indication
Normal blood sugar levels
Low blood sugar levels
High blood sugar levels
How to lower blood sugar level?
Children blood sugar levels
Blood sugar levels chart
Checking for BS:
How to check blood sugar?
How to lower blood sugar level?
Can diabetes be cured?
What does it mean when someone refers to blood sugar level in your body? Blood sugar level (or blood sugar concentration) is the amount of glucose (a source of energy) present in your blood at any given time.
A normal blood glucose level for a healthy person is somewhere between 72 mg/dL (3.8 to 4 mmol/L) and 108 mg/dL (5.8 to 6 mmol/L). It, of course, depends on every individual alone.
Typically blood sugar level in humans is around 72 mg/dL (or 4 mmol/L). After a meal the blood sugar level may increase temporarily up to 140 mg/dL (7.8 mmol/L). This is normal.
Note: mg/dL and mmol/L are units of measure. mg/dL is mostly used in USA whereas mmol/L is mostly used in EU and other parts of the world. For easier conversion try our mg/dL mmol/L conversion tool.
A blood sugar level between 72 mg/dL (4 mmol/L) and 108 mg/dL (6 mmol/L) is considered normal for a healthy adult.
A normal blood sugar level is between 72 mg/dL and 108 mg/dL (4 to 6 mmol/L) for a healthy person.
The concentration of glucose in the blood of a healthy person in the morning on an empty stomach is between 68 mg/dL and 108 mg/dL (3.8 and 6.0 mmol/L). Two hours after consuming foods or drinks rich in carbohydrates, the values are usually between 120 and 140 mg/dL (6.7 and 7.8 mmol/L).
For children up to 6 years of age desired blood sugar level before eating is between 100 mg/dL (5.5 mmol/L) and 180 mg/dL (10 mmol/L). Before sleep values should be between 110 mg/dL (6.1 mmol/L) and 200 mg/dL (11.1 mmol/L).
For children between the age of 6 and 12, before eating, blood sugar levels should be between 90 mg/dL (5 mmol/L) and 180 mg/dL (10 mmol/L). Before sleep values should be between 100 mg/dL (5.5 mmol/L) and 180 mg/dL (10 mmol/L).
Children aged 13 to 19 should expect similar readings than those of adults.
Blood sugar levels rise and drop during the day. This is normal. However, dramatic fluctuations in your blood glucose levels may indicate problems.
Dramatic changes of blood sugar levels have significant physical symptoms and will increase your risk of diabetes-related complications.
Click on the image below to view a larger blood sugar levels chart.
Blood sugar levels chart displays possible levels of blood glucose. Values are expressed in mmol/L and mg/dL. This blood sugar levels chart is not 100% accurate due to different thresholds set in different countries around the world. Consult your personal doctor for more information. Click above image to view blood sugar levels chart; Image source: healthiack.com
|Glucose mg/dL or mmol/L||Value|
|Before breakfast (fasting)||70 – 130 mg/dL or 3.9 – 7.2 mmol/L|
|Before lunch, supper and snack||70 – 130 mg/dL or 3.9 – 7.2 mmol/L|
|Two hours after meals||less than 180 mg/dL or less than 10mmol/L|
|Bedtime||90 – 150 mg/dL or 5 – 8.3 mmol/L|
|A1C (also called glycosylated hemoglobin A1c, HbA1c or glycohemoglobin A1c)||less than 7%|
Please note that you should perform several consecutive blood glucose tests and not rely on one single measurement.
The next chart displays all possible blood sugar (glucose) levels along with a short explanation of what the indicators are.
|Blood Sugar Levels||Indication|
|Less than 70 mg/dL (3.9 mmol/L)||Low fasting blood sugar|
|70 to 108 mg/dL (3.9 to 6 mmol/L)||Normal fasting blood sugar for adults|
|110 to 125 mg/dL (6.1 to 6.9 mmol/L)||Impaired fasting glucose (pre-diabetes)|
|126 mg/dL (7.0 mmol/L) and above in more than one test result||Diabetes|
|about 70 to 140 mg/dL (3.9 to 7.8 mmol/L)||Normal postprandial blood sugar|
|about 142 to 199 mg/dL (7.9 to 10.9 mmol/L)||Borderline postprandial blood sugar. May indicate pre-diabetes.|
|Less than 70 mg/dL (3.9 mmol/L)||Hypoglycemia (Initial Stage)|
|50 mg/dL (2.8 mmol/L)||Hypoglycemia (Fasting)|
|less than 50 mg/dL (2.8 mmol/L)||Insulin Shock|
|145 – 200 mg/dL (8 – 11 mmol/L) Post meal||Value suggesting early diabetes|
|More than 200 mg/dL (11 mmol/L) Post meal||Value suggesting established diabetes|
Normal values for blood sugar are (values are in mmol/L, mg/dL and HbA1c) in the table below.
|Blood sugar levels||HbA1c||mg/dL||mmol/L|
|low||less than 4||less than 65||less than 3.6|
Low blood sugar levels, normal blood sugar levels and high blood sugar levels chart.
When your blood sugar level drops below 70 mg/dL (3,9 mmol/L) this means you have a low level of blood sugar. The usual symptoms of low blood sugar levels are:
- faltering speech,
- difficulty in concentration,
- visual disturbances…
Symptoms may vary – different people might experience different symptoms. In some cases symptoms can even remain unrecognized (unconscious hypoglycemia).
Chronically high blood sugar (diabetes) is caused by a number of abnormalities in the body, one of them being the affected vascular walls of small and large arteries (diabetic micro-and macro-angiopathy) in a process called atherosclerosis.
We can say that a blood sugar level is high if we measure glucose level and get the following values – more than 110 mg/dL (6.1 mmol/L) on an empty stomach or at any time more than 200 mg/dL (11.1 mmol/L).
If measured blood sugar level is high you should consult your personal doctor! High values of blood sugar may indicate diabetes.
High blood sugar levels affect the arteries throughout the body, especially the organs which have the richest blood circulation: heart, brain, kidney, senses, nerves and other organs.
If the high blood sugar is associated with disturbances in lipid metabolism (blood fat), the abnormalities are more intense. Diabetes is among the risk factors for major non-communicable diseases: cardiovascular (coronary) disease, cerebral vascular disease and peripheral vascular diseases.
Typical symptoms of high blood sugar levels (diabetes) are thirst, frequent urination and unexpected weight loss. Sometimes a patient may also experience the following:
- impaired vision,
- itching skin,
- increased appetite,
- skin infections,
- feeling of dizziness,
- heavy dehydration.
Type 1 diabetes symptoms are severe and last for a short time before the disease is diagnosed. Type 2 diabetes symptoms appear slowly and are usually unrecognizable or nearly absent.
Use this tool to convert blood sugar values.
There are basically two main tests which are conducted to determine whether someone has diabetes.
Impaired fasting glycemia test
When being tested for diabetes by a impaired fasting glycemia test, blood sugar levels will normally be taken after around eight hours of fasting.
Impaired glucose tolerance test
An impaired glucose tolerance test involves taking a concentrated amount of glucose and then measuring blood sugar levels after two hours.
In a healthy person, a normal blood glucose level is between 72 mg/dL (4 mmol/L) and 108 mg/dL (6 mmol/L). Read on how to check blood sugar values.
For checking your blood sugar level, you will need:
Medical alcohol to clean the skin where you will prick your finger, a sterile tool to prick your finger, some test strips and a glucose meter to read the test strip.
|Glucose mg/dL or mmol/L level||Value|
|less than 110 mg/dL or 6 mmol/L on an empty stomach||normal value|
|between 110 mg/dL or 6.1 mmol/L and 125 mg/dL or 6.9 mmol/L on an empty stomach||limit value|
|more than 125 mg/dL or 7.0 mmol/L on an empty stomach||possible diabetes|
|more than 198 mg/dL or 11.0 mmol/L anytime||possible diabetes|
At this time there is no known official case of cured diabetes.
The fact is that with Diabetes type 1 body’s cells that produce insulin are destroyed. These cells cannot be regrown or replaced. You need to use insulin injections to control your blood sugar levels.
With type 2 diabetes your body does not use insulin properly (also known as insulin resistance). Over the time a patient’s condition worsens as body cannot make enough insulin to keep blood glucose at normal levels.
Refer to this article for more information on how brown fat tissue may help control your disease or even revert it! No hoax – scientifically proven!
Brown fat protects against diabetes and obesity in humans
A patient with diabetes is at a 5 times greater risk of developing cardiovascular disease than patient without diabetes. One third of all cardiovascular diseases also affect people with diabetes.
Three quarters of diabetics die from cardiovascular disease. Women with diabetes have a 4 times greater risk of death from cardiovascular disease. People suffering from diabetes usually have high cholesterol levels as well.
Disturbances in the metabolism of blood sugar levels are mainly the consequence of heredity (diabetes in the family), age (over 40), poor diet, excessive body weight (obesity) and physical inactivity. Disturbances in the metabolism of blood sugar were present in 20% of adult Europeans during 2002-2005 a study showed.
RECOMMENDATIONS to decrease elevated blood sugar:
Blood sugar level is determined in the fasting state. In a healthy person, a normal blood glucose level is less than 108 mg/dL or 6 mmol/L on an empty stomach. By measuring values of blood sugar, we can say that there are 3 options:
- normal blood sugar level (the blood glucose level is normal on an empty stomach),
- disruption of glycemia (blood glucose in the blood on an empty stomach is increased to a maximum value between 110 and 124 mg/dL (6.1 and 6.9 mmol/L),
- diabetes (elevated blood sugar levels to 126 mg/dL / 7.0 mmol/L or more).
What can you do to lower the chance of developing diabetes:
- lose weight – be fit,
- sleep more, be rested. Read this article on what to do if you cannot sleep.
- have a healthy diet (read how should a diabetic diet look like) with as many vegetables and fruits, a lot of fiber, consume less calories, less fat, less alcoholic beverages and no simple sugars,
- workout at least 30 minutes per day.
American Diabetes Association (ADA) – http://www.diabetes.org/
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics – http://www.eatright.org/
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) – http://www.niddk.nih.gov/
Children with Diabetes – http://www.childrenwithdiabetes.com/
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute – http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/
International Diabetes Federation – http://www.idf.org/
CDC on Diabetes – http://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/
Diabetes Care – http://care.diabetesjournals.org/
American Association of Diabetes Educators – http://www.diabeteseducator.org/
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