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New Standards of Care for Diabetes

New Standards of Care for Diabetes

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) — the leading diabetes advisory organization in the United States — is making changes to its Standards of Care. Every year, the ADA revises and makes changes to these Standards in order to keep pace with changing science and technology, and to provide the medical industry with the most complete information: Standards of Care generally provide insight for clinicians and other health professionals into all manner of factors related to diabetes care, such as prevention, testing, diagnosis, and management, etc.

Some of the most significant changes included new cardiovascular recommendations, such as:

  • Cholesterol-lowering drugs for all patients with diabetes. Based on new guidelines from the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHA), patients will now be assessed based on their risk profiles, rather than their LDL levels. Since having diabetes is considered a risk factor in itself (a person with diabetes is two to four times more likely to experience a cardiovascular event than one without), the new Standards call for all people with diabetes to take a statin – the strength of which will be based on age and other cardiovascular risk factors.
  • A less stringent diastolic blood pressure goal of 90 mmHg, instead of 80 mmHg;

Changing diagnostics for various at-risk populations:

  • Lowering the BMI cut point for screening of overweight or obese Asian Americans (from 25 kg/m2 to 23 kg/m2), to better reflect that population’s higher type 2 diabetes risk;
  • A new A1C target of less than 7.5% for children and adolescents;
  • A call for the use of the A1C, and A1C percentage targets, for diagnosing and managing gestational diabetes; and

General guidelines for health and wellness of those living with and without diabetes, such as:

  • A denouncing of e-cigarettes as not an adequate substitute for smoking or as an aid to smoking cessation;
  • Regular exercising, as well as adding resistance training at least twice per week (unless otherwise recommended by personal physician for medical reasons);
  • Breaking up large periods of inactivity (where we’re sitting down at a desk for example), into no more than 90 minute intervals;
  • And a revision of the immunization guidelines for older adults over the age of 65, in order to reflect the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in regards to pneumonia vaccination.

These guidelines will likely be received with some resistance by patients not too keen on being placed on yet another medication, particularly if their LDL levels do not reflect a need. Every person with diabetes should have a frank discussion with their medical team in order to assess risk, and progress, and the potential need for a change in diabetes management.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Al Klein
    4 years ago

    “A denouncing of e-cigarettes as not an adequate substitute for smoking or as an aid to smoking cessation; ”

    I want them to come out with one that’s just water. No flavor, and definitely no nicotine. Just smoking can kill the urge to snack, and inhaling water vapor is something that many people (like in tropical jungles) do as naturally as … well … breathing.

    As for giving it (smoking) up, you can do that, or you can lie in a hospital bed for a week after a heart attack and you’ll have given it up. Doing it without the heart attack is probably better. (Who knew? I just kept puffing away until they had to call an ambulance. Six days later I wasn’t a smoker.)

  • Teenie1949
    4 years ago

    some resistance ??!! until all plans help pay for insulin without a donut hole for seniors, I will resist paying for one more drug that I don’t need…

  • Al Klein
    4 years ago

    I’m not convinced that more insulin, when your body already produces enough, is really doing anything but masking the problem. For a type 1 diabetic, the problem is not enough insulin, so they need more, but for a type 2? It’s lowering the blood sugar, which is a good thing, because sugar helps to acidify the blood, which is bad, but remember – type 1 diabetics are starving, because their cells aren’t taking in nutrition. Type 2 diabetics usually aren’t starving, we have problems with gaining too much weight. Our cells are taking in the nourishment they need, and the insulin is causing us to store excess sugar as fat.

    Instead of sugar and insulin, cut back on the carbs and your blood sugar will drop – for free.

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