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The Best Time to Check Blood Glucose After a Meal

Q: I was recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Should I check my blood glucose two hours from when I start eating or after I finish eating my meal?

A: Most of the food you consume will be digested and raises blood glucose in one to two hours. To capture the peak level of your blood glucose, it is best to test one to two hours after you start eating.

The American Diabetes Association recommends a target of below 180 mg/dl two hours after a meal. The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists recommends a lower target: below 140 mg/dl two hours after a meal.

Ask your doctor which target is right for you. Postmeal blood glucose monitoring (and record-keeping) is important because it helps you see how your body responds to carbohydrates in general and particular foods. Managing postmeal blood glucose can help reduce your risk of developing heart and circulation problems.

Virginia Zamudio Lange, a member of Diabetic Living's editorial advisory board, is a founding partner of Alamo Diabetes Team, LLP in San Antonio.

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