An A1c of 5.9 indicates Prediabetes.
View the full A1c chart to learn more about A1c levels.
What does an A1c of 5.9 mean?
An A1C of 5.9 means that you have prediabetes, which puts you at risk for developing diabetes.
The A1c test measures blood sugar over the last three months by looking at the percentage of hemoglobin saturated with sugar. An A1c of 5.9 means that 5.9% of the hemoglobin in your blood are saturated with sugar.
While there are no signs or symptoms of prediabetes, the damage diabetes can have on your heart, blood vessels and kidneys may have already begun.
A score of 5.9 doesn’t automatically mean that you will get diabetes. However, you should focus on reducing your A1c score and improving your overall health.
A1c 5.9 conversion rates
Blood sugar can be measured in a variety of ways, which often leads to confusion.
An A1c of 5.9 is equal to blood sugar of 123 mg/dl or 6.8 mmol/l.
View the full A1c conversion chart to better understand these tests and numbers.
What to do if your A1c is 5.9
An A1c of 5.9 falls into the prediabetic range between 5.7 and 6.4. People with prediabetes are likely to get type 2 diabetes within 10 years unless they make serious changes to their lifestyle.
Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes. Type 2 means that your body still produces insulin but isn’t using it properly. Many people can control their blood sugar levels with lifestyle changes while others may need insulin or other medications to manage it.
Keep an eye on your blood sugar by testing at home. It’s easier than ever and there are a variety of affordable blood glucose monitors available.
A prediabetes A1c reading is a call to action. At a minimum you’ll need to make some lifestyle changes. You and your doctor can discuss whether medication is necessary.
Medications with A1c of 5.9
Many doctors won’t prescribe diabetes medication for someone with an A1c of 5.9. However, when other risk factors are present, such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, your doctor might prescribe a first line drug to reduce your blood sugar.
The most common first line drug is Metformin, an oral drug that reduces glucose production in the liver, decreases the absorption of glucose in the stomach and improves your body’s insulin sensitivity.
Already on medication to manage your diabetes? If so, an A1c of 5.9 might be considered adequate, though getting below 5.6 is still recommended.
Talk to your doctor about whether an A1c of 5.9 is the optimal level for you and if medication, dosage or injection adjustments are necessary.
Lifestyle changes with A1c of 5.9
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
If you have an A1c level of 5.9 you can minimize the chance of developing diabetes through the following lifestyle changes:
- Increase exercise
- Reduce calories
- Monitor carbohydrates
- Limit alcohol
- Stop smoking
- Lose weight
- Alleviate stress
Skip dessert. Ditch the fast food. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Meditate. Changing a few habits can make a difference and help ensure your blood sugar stays under control.
Remember to review your plan with a doctor before pursuing lifestyle modifications. Each patient may have specific medical conditions, such as a heart condition, that could make certain activities dangerous.