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Routine HbA1c testing for individuals who have risk factors for type 2 diabetes may play an important role in their ability to remain healthy and avoid the metabolic condition. With 79 million people at risk for the disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, regular testing could help prevent a major health crisis in the U.S.
The American Diabetes Association recommends regular testing for people who have prediabetes, a condition marked by insulin resistance that often develops into type 2 diabetes. This is because metabolic conditions are more effectively treated in their early stages. Catching them sooner may be the key to helping individuals improve their metabolic health.
Studies have shown that losing between 5 and 10 percent of a person's body weight and getting regular exercise may be enough for a person who is at risk for developing type 2 diabetes to avoid the condition. However, doctors need early warning to recommend lifestyle interventions to people.
The CDC has estimated that the number of people who have type 2 diabetes could more than double over the next couple decades. However, it may be possible for many individuals to improve their metabolic health. HbA1c testing could be central to preventing millions of new diabetes cases.
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