Blood sugar (glucose) is a substance in the blood that helps transport energy throughout the body. Diabetes results when blood sugar levels are too high. This is often referred to as hyperglycemia. Checking your blood sugar on a regular basis is crucial to diabetes management, including before and after meals. It can be difficult to catch patterns in sugar fluctuations if you don’t keep track of your levels. A blood sugar levels chart can help you keep track and lead to more effective diabetes management. It’s also important to discuss charting options with your doctor.
Checking your blood sugar is just one step in glucose management. You should also track and record your readings multiple times a day on a regular basis. In this sense, you can produce your own health records that can complement tests performed by your doctor.
Consistency is the key when charting glucose levels. Aside from meals, it’s also helpful to make note of other factors that may affect your blood sugar. There are other considerations that can cause fluctuations in blood sugar levels besides food and medicine. Factors that affect levels may include:
- changes in activity levels
- weather changes
- minor illnesses
- taking medicine at different times than you’re used to
- dirty meters
Blood Sugar Levels Chart
You can use the blood sugar chart below to track your blood glucose levels. Download the chart as a Microsoft Word document, or right-click the image to save or print it.
Ideal blood sugar levels can vary, especially if you are pregnant or have any underlying health conditions. Call your doctor if you’re unsure of what your levels should be. The American Diabetes Association recommends the following target ranges for most adults:
- between 70 and 130 mg/dl before meals
- below 180 mg/dl within two hours after eating
- general reading of A1C at 7 percent
- fasting reading of eAG at 154 mg/dl
The American Diabetes Association has an online calculator that can help you convert A1C to eAG (and vice versa).
Anything above 180 mg/dl is considered dangerously high. Levels that fall below 50 mg/dl are dangerously low. According to the Mayo Clinic, a normal fasting reading in an adult without diabetes is between 70 and 100 mg/dl. Your target levels might be higher if you have hypoglycemic unawareness. This means that you are prone to low blood sugar but don’t notice any warning symptoms.
The purpose of measuring blood glucose is to help prevent hypo- and hyperglycemia. Glucose readings can also help you determine if you need medicine or not, especially if you’re not taking insulin on a regular basis. If your levels are consistently low or high, you should discuss changing treatment plans with your doctor right away.
A handwritten chart is just one of the effective ways you can track your blood sugar levels. You can store the chart on your computer or tablet and type in the results as they come up. Other charts are available in the form of mobile apps.
Skipping readings can derail the benefits of the chart. It’s a good idea to set alarms for when you need to check your blood sugar, especially if you don’t always measure glucose before and after meals.
Just as diabetes treatment continues to evolve, there are numerous options to help patients keep tabs on their health. A blood sugar levels chart is an invaluable resource to ensure your diabetes care needs are adequately met.