Understanding your A1C reading with your eAG: Estimated Average Glucose

Posted on December 22, 2009


Every three to six months we have our A1C measured…but what does that number really mean? You know it’s a measure of your average blood sugar reading, but when was the last time your blood glucose monitor gave you a percentage? Your A1C is essentially a measurement of the Advanced Glycogenated End-products that have accumulated in your blood from blood sugar levels…the higher our blood sugars are, the more AGEs are present in our blood. These AGEs are also what lead to various complications we’re warned about: nerve damage, retinopathy, etc.

So, as usual, our goal is to reduce our A1C which will reduce our AGEs, and we do this by controlling our blood sugars better.

The Joslin Diabetes Center recently published an article about a new way to report your A1C so you can translate that number to the numbers you see on your monitor.

This is your eAG= Estimated Average Glucose.

So what does it mean to you when your doctor says your A1C is 8%? According to the Joslin article an A1C of 8% means your eAG is 183, which means your blood sugars run usually between 147 to 217.

My last A1C was 7.6%. This means my blood sugars run between 140 to 200 on average through the day. The lowest A1C I’ve ever had was 6.2% and the highest I’ve had was a few years ago when I started college, at 8.4%.

Here’s a chart for your A1C readings translated to your eAG:

12% = 298 (240 – 347)
11% = 269 (217 – 314)
10% = 240 (193 – 282)
9% = 212 (170 –249)
8% = 183 (147 – 217)
7% = 154 (123 – 185)
6% = 126 ( 100 – 152)

So, if your A1C is 11%, your average glucose reading is 269, which means ninty-five percent of the day your blood sugar is somewhere between 217 to 314.


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