What is Glycated Haemoglobin (HbA1c)?

If you’re looking for information on what is glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c), you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll discuss the basics of glycated haemoglobin, how the HBA1C blood test is used, and the reliability of the test. You’ll also learn about the ways to lower your hbA1C levels.

glycated haemoglobin

The importance of measuring glycated haplogroups in HbA1c blood tests has been known for over 40 years. In the 1980s, it was suggested that this blood marker be used as an objective glycaemic control measure. In a study involving 643 participants, the researchers established a strong correlation between A1C levels and average glucose levels. Since then, the HbA1c blood test has become a cornerstone of clinical practice.

The main reason why the test is practical is that it measures a person’s average sugar levels over three months. This is because the life of a haemoglobin cell is three months. Thus, the results are not accurate for any given day, but they give the doctor a good idea of blood sugar control over time. And since blood cells only live for three months, the A1c blood test is also a valuable tool for tracking prediabetes and diabetes.

Haemoglobin variants

Haemoglobin variants are different types of abnormal globin chains. These changes affect the secondary, tertiary, or quaternary structures. Some haemoglobin variants have no apparent clinical consequences, while others are more severe. For example, Hb Gun Hill or Hb Hammersmith are unstable forms of haemoglobin. Fortunately, the majority of haemoglobin variants are harmless.

Hb Himeji is a haemoglobin variant with an increased glycation level, and its presence correlates with high levels of HbA1c. The other two variants, HbX1c and HbX0, exhibit an abnormally low #C fraction. In the case of Hb Himeji, the test may fail to detect this haemoglobin variant.

Reliability of hba1c test

To determine the reliability of HbA1c blood tests, clinical trials must use a reference standard certified by the National Glycohemoglobin Standardization Program or the International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine. The research design for these studies includes a Bland-Altman plot and a comparison of laboratory-based and point-of-care test results.

The HbA1c blood test shows blood glucose levels for the last three months. It is given in mmol/mol and is more reliable in reflecting blood sugar control over time. The results of the HbA1c test can tell a doctor how well a patient is controlling their diabetes and whether any lifestyle modifications should be made. However, the test’s reliability depends on the patient’s red blood cell count. Because anaemia affects the blood sugar level, the test can be inaccurate.

Ways to lower hba1c levels

Among the various ways to lower A1C levels is a combination of different methods. For instance, you can reduce your HbA1C by performing aerobic exercises. Aerobic exercises use the body’s large muscle groups, such as walking, swimming, or bicycling. You should also engage in resistance exercises, which include weight machines and resistance bands. Although they work in different ways to improve your health, both types of exercise lower your blood sugar levels, including your A1C level.

Another way to lower your A1C is to reduce your calorie intake and increase your fibre intake. Fibre-rich foods include beans, non-starchy vegetables, nuts, and flax seeds. Whole grains are another excellent source of fibre. Whole grain bread and pasta are also high-fibre foods. If you want to lower your A1C level naturally, you can try intermittent fasting. Just make sure you do it in moderation.

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