HbA1c (Hemoglobin A1c) A1c Chart, Test, Levels, & Normal Range

Medically Reviewed By: Dr. Damanjit Duggal, MD, MBBS April 20, 2022

hba1c test normal range

Haemoglobin is a kind of molecule that is present in red blood cells and helps in carrying oxygen to the body’s tissue. The full form of  hba1c is haemoglobin A1c or HbA1c or glycosylated haemoglobin. It is a form of haemoglobin that contains sugar. Read this blog to know what the hba1c test means, the normal range of hba1c chart in detail with cost, and how 1000s of people have been able to achieve normal HbA1c levels through the Diabetes Reversal Method.

HBA1C Chart

HBa1c test chart normal ranges

Diabetics have a higher amount of glycosylated haemoglobin levels is contrary, unlike non-diabetics. Thus, to meet a controlled level of blood sugar, it is better to do HbA1c tests.

Table of Contents

Need to Monitor HbA1c Level

Blood Glucose levels can fluctuate every minute depending upon your activity and the food you eat. Therefore, it is important to regularly monitor your blood glucose or sugar levels as it helps in understanding how your blood glucose levels are changing and how your meals are affecting them. But a proper diet plan with constant push and motivation can help you regulate your blood glucose levels.

Generally, urine tests and daily prick methods were used to measure sugar levels in people with high blood sugar levels. Although these tests are somewhat accurate but can give false reports at times. HbA1c test is helpful in measuring average blood sugar levels over the past 2-3 months. People with diabetes are required to get this test done regularly so that they can keep a check on their blood sugar levels. This ultimately helps in diabetes management.

Improving lifestyle, i.e sleeping patterns, controlling the diet (what and how much to eat), and proper fitness guidance is helpful in maintaining a healthy and hba1c normal range for life. I have seen people reducing their HbAc1 from 9.8 to 5.6 during the Diabetes Reversal Program.

Also Read: Normal Blood Sugar Levels Chart

How Often is HbA1c Test Required?

As per the ADA, diabetes screening is recommended in people with age more than 45 years (every 3 years). Also, it is fine to perform screening at any age, in case a person has risk factors like:

  • Being obese or physically inactive
  • Having close relative suffering from diabetes
  • Had diabetes during pregnancy (referred to as gestational diabetes)
  • Having symptoms of insulin resistance or conditions related to insulin resistance like hypertension, low good cholesterol, high triglycerides, as well as polycystic ovary syndrome

Patients having diabetes with stable blood sugar levels must go for an hba1c test roughly twice a year. Your doctor might recommend quarterly monitoring (every 3 months) in case of:

  • A recent diagnosis of diabetes
  • Pregnancy-related diabetes
  • Altering HbA1c levels
  • Modifications in treatment or insulin dose
  • A history of hypoglycemia (low blood glucose)

Read More: Signs and Symptoms Of Diabetes

Reasons for Fluctuations in HbA1c Normal Range

Use of Insulin, fasting, oral intake of glucose, or frequent fluctuations in your blood sugar levels are the most common reasons for the alteration in glycosylated hemoglobin levels. If people with diabetes notice the fluctuations in their glycosylated Hb level, they should consult doctors to maintain their HbA1c levels at the normal range. This helps in reducing risks and avoiding complications due to diabetes.

Getting rid of Insulin and other medications by proper sleeping, eating, and workout habits sounds impossible. But I have come across many people who have been able to regularise their Glycosylated Haemoglobin Levels and live a healthy life after successful Diabetes Reversal.

Also Read: List of Important Blood Sugar Tests

The Measure of Glucose in Glycosylated Haemoglobin

In the glycosylated hemoglobin test (A1c test), the percentage of hemoglobin that is bound to glucose is measured. The average concentration of blood glucose is reflected in this test after three months. The glycosylated hemoglobin can be measured in percentage or in units of mmol/mol. This is now a standard unit in which glycosylated hemoglobin is measured all over the world.

Read More: Best Glucometers to Buy in 2022 

Know Your Normal Range of HbA1c With the Help of a Chart

normal range of HbA1c

hba1c normal range chart

Levels of HbA1c For Normal, Pre Diabetic, and Diabetic Person

People can have different normal ranges of HbA1c. Here you can check out with the help of the hba1c normal range chart, what should be the normal levels of glycosylated hemoglobin for individuals:

  • In Non-Diabetic People: Several reports have revealed that the complications of diabetes can be reduced if your HbA1c test range is below 7%. A healthy person can have HbA1c measure less than 6% of the total hemoglobin. Below 6.0%, or below 42 mmol/mol is the normal value of hba1c for a non-diabetic adult.
  • In a Pre-Diabetic Person: If your blood sugar levels are slightly higher than the normal range then you are a pre-diabetic person. Your diabetes levels are not too high to be considered type-2 diabetes. With a proper lifestyle and diet management, you can control your diabetes at this level through Diabetes Reversal Method and can attain a normal range of HbA1c values is 6.0% to 6.4%, or 42 to 47 mmol/mol.
  • In Diabetic People: Any person suffering from type-2 diabetes then your normal value is 6.5% or above, or 48 mmol/mol or above. This hba1c test range may be normal but there is a need for proper guidance from doctors and medications along with healthy lifestyle changes to maintain the range. If your value goes beyond the mentioned range then it can increase the risk of heart stroke, peripheral artery disease, glaucoma, diabetic foot, diabetic kidney disease, and more.

Over 10000 pre-diabetic and diabetic people have successfully come from the orange and red zone (dangerous, deadly) to the green zone (optimal, super optimal) by making sustainable lifestyle changes. A few people I know didn’t believe that diabetes reversal is possible or one can be off diabetes and other medications before they got on a call with us. They believed, worked towards their goal with proper guidance of coaches, and are now Diabetes free.

Read More: Can Diabetics Eat Jaggery?

HbA1c Target Levels in Diabetics

A person’s target A1C level is set on the basis of several factors. The right target differs from individual to individual. For any diabetic patient, the target A1C level might be based upon:

  • Age
  • Overall health
  • Pregnant or not
  • History of diabetes
  • Their recommended treatment plan
  • Any complications from diabetes
  • An individual’s treatment priorities

A Healthcare Provider May Suggest a Target of A1C levels Under 6.5% if an Individual:

  • Is young and has a long-life expectancy
  • Has a history of diabetes over a short period
  • Is successfully managing his or her diabetes via lifestyle alterations or metformin alone

A Healthcare Provider May Suggest a Target of A1C levels of 7.0–8.5% if a Person:

  • Is older and has a shorter life expectancy
  • Has a history of diabetes over a longer period
  • Has other chronic medical problems
  • Suffering from diabetes which is difficult to manage, even with multiple drugs
  • Has experienced diabetic complications
  • Has a history of serious hypoglycemia

Read More: Natural Remedies to Control your Diabetes at Home

Not all High Values of HbA1c Tests Means You are Diabetic

If you get a high HbA1c level, it does not mean that you are suffering from high diabetes. Many people come with different types of haemoglobin, except type A. The condition is hemoglobinopathy. It states the high or low values of HbA1c.

If you are anemic or struggling with iron deficiency in your body then also you are likely to get the wrong values on the average of 3-month diabetes test. Therefore, if you want the average of 3 months of blood glucose tests done, make sure you are not anemic.

There are some medications also well which can alter your results of glycosylated hemoglobin test levels. These include:

  • Supplements like Vitamin C or E, iron, vitamin B12, and folate
  • Erythropoietin therapy
  • Aspirin
  • Antiviral and antimicrobial medicines.

If you are going for a glycosylated hemoglobin test, your doctor will make sure of the factors that can affect your test results.

Quantity and quality of food can have a great impact on your haemoglobin levels, which can get you incorrect values. There was a patient who had high-level stress of being diabetic because of high HbAc1 level. With stress comes so many other problems like insomnia, fatigue, low energy levels, suicidal thoughts etc. After consultation calls and joining the Diabetes Reversal Program, he is now enjoying a healthy lifestyle. This lifestyle includes nutritious food products available in the kitchen. And all the products suit his body, also he can do exercises at home or at office.

Book your consultation with a Diabetes expert now. Diabetes Specialists assist in transforming lifestyles. They deal with the emotional issues that this condition can bring. With a unique blend of interconnected technology and human touch, a person can stay connected to our diabetes-focused holistic support all over the day.

What Causes High or Low Haemoglobin A1c Levels?

The level of haemoglobin A1c is largely dependent upon the blood sugar levels. The higher the blood glucose (sugar) level, the higher the amount of haemoglobin A1c. The higher the value of HbA1c, the greater the risk of experiencing complications associated with diabetes. Somebody who has had unmanaged diabetes for a long time may have a level of more than 8%. Factors responsible for altering the levels of haemoglobin A1c include:

  • Oral or intravenous glucose consumption
  • Fasting
  • Insulin usage
  • Combinations of any of the above-stated factors

Individuals with ailments influencing haemoglobin, like anaemia, might get ambiguous outcomes with this test. Other things that might influence the outcomes of the haemoglobin A1c involve supplements including vitamins C and E as well as high cholesterol levels. Kidney ailments and liver ailments are also seen to affect the test.

How Does A1c work?

A1c testing depends upon haemoglobin. haemoglobin is present in the person’s RBC and transfers oxygen all through the body. When glucose is present in the blood, it sticks (glycates) to the haemoglobin. Higher amount of glucose in the blood results in more sticking to the haemoglobin. The A1c test assesses the average sugar sticking to haemoglobin over time.

What are A1C and eAG and What are the Differences?

If a person is diabetic and tracks his or her blood sugar levels, then the physician may report A1C results as eAG. The reporting of eAG results occurs in milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl) or millimoles per liter (mmol/l) units. For instance, 7% A1c level is equal to eAG of 154 mg/dl or 8.6 mmol/l.

Does Low Haemoglobin Affect A1C?

Low hemoglobin has a straightforward relationship with the levels of HbA1c. This means that haemoglobin level drops when hemoglobin levels dropdown.

There are so many food items in our kitchen that are full of nutrients but most of us are not aware of those. As I recall, a patient over the consultation call told us about her not wanting to consume supplements to fulfill her nutrient requirements but was looking for a diet that includes staple food. A personal diet coach helped her with a diet chart, customised according to her body requirements and easy to follow for life.

Haemoglobin A1c Conversion Chart (HbA1c chart)

Till now there is no specific guideline by concerned health organizations for using haemoglobin A1c test as the tool to screen diabetes. However, HbA1c high values indicate that a person may have diabetes.

The following chart shows the correlation between HbA1c levels and average blood sugar levels.

HbA1c Test Normal Range Chart
A1(%) Mean blood sugar (mg/dl)
6 135
7 170
8 205
9 240
10 275
11 305
12 340

Studies have shown that 1% reduction in HbA1c glucose level reduces the risk of microvascular diseases up to 10%. Thus, when you get closer to HbA1c normal level, the absolute risk of microvascular diseases or complications also gets lower.

Also Read: C-Reactive Protein or CRP Normal Levels Chart For Adults

Benefits of HbA1c Test Over Other Diabetes Tests

Choose the HbA1c test over other diabetes tests due to its many benefits. Some of the benefits include:

  • No need for preparations: For the HbA1c test, there is no need for preparations in advance. A person can do this test at any time of the day. But, the other diabetes tests need fasting. For this test, a person has to fast for at least 5-6 hours. After the fasting test, there is another following meal blood test. This helps in giving the levels of your blood sugar post-meal.
  • No special diet to follow: An oral glucose tolerance test also diagnoses diabetes. There is a need to follow a special diet for 3 days before this test. Along with this, a person has to fast overnight before the test. Yet, while going for an HbA1c check, a person may eat or drink anything as per liking.
  • Convenient and time-saving: Within some hours, many blood tests are done. This helps to detect blood sugar levels in several other tests to diagnose or check sugar levels. Yet, HbA1c is a single blood test. A person even gets the HbA1c report within 24 hours of the test and the procedure is also easy.

Limitations of Measuring Value of Haemoglobin A1c

A Haemoglobin a1c blood test is not suitable if a person is highly diabetic. The blood sugar level does not affect the values of HbA1c. A person also cannot diagnose the presence or absence of hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia. Besides, a person can get the false high value of HbA1c levels in conditions like: 

  1. Kidney failure
  2. High intake of alcohol
  3. Anemia
  4. Thalassemia
  5. Sickle cell disease

Also Read: Do Antibiotics Raise Blood Sugar

What are the Advantages of Reducing HbA1c?

Some recent studies depicted that an improvement in HbA1c by 1% (or 11 mmol/mol) for individuals experiencing type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes reduces the risk of microvascular complications by 25%.

Microvascular complications can be:

  • Neuropathy
  • Retinopathy
  • Diabetic nephropathy (renal disorder)

Studies have also found that individuals suffering from type 2 diabetes who lessen their HbA1c level by 1% are:

  • 19% less expected to experience cataracts
  • 16% less expected to experience heart failure
  • 43% less expected to experience amputation or death as a result of peripheral vascular disease.

Also Read: Effects of Having Madhunashini Vati in Diabetes

Natural Ways to Bring Normal Range of HbA1c

Those who have higher levels of HbA1c can bring down the level of HbA1c to the normal range through medications. Apart from this, there are some natural ways as well which can bring your HbA1c normal. These include:

  • Quit smoking to get haemoglobin A1c levels down.
  • You should eat a balanced and healthy diet to maintain the immune system and hormonal balance.
  • Exercising is another natural way to control the increased glycosylated haemoglobin levels and it helps in losing weight and lowering blood sugar which ultimately results in enhancing insulin sensitivity.
  • Adopt a healthy lifestyle to keep your blood sugar levels in control.

You can easily achieve this without disturbing your daily schedule like Ms. Dheeraj Sabharwal who has been able to reduce her HbA1c level from 9.8 to 6.2 by switching to a healthy lifestyle with the constant support and motivation of a Diet Coach, Fitness Coach the Diabetologist. She has successfully reversed diabetes while pursuing her teaching profession and also taking care of the family.

Also Read: Top 10 Homeopathic Medecines for Diabetes

FAQ’s:

What is a good A1C level for type 2 diabetes?

An A1c objective in the range of 7% to 8% is sensible and advantageous for many type 2 diabetics. Even if, if lifestyle modifications may get that number lower, then aim for it.

Is HbA1C 8.5 normal?

For non-diabetics, the normal HbA1c level ranges between 4% and 5.6%. The levels between 5.7% and 6.4% indicates prediabetes and a greater possibility of diabetes. HbA1c of 6.5% or greater indicates diabetes.

What are the symptoms of high HbA1C?

Signs of high HbA1C may include fatigue, urinating more often, weight loss, and irregular thirst.

Can HbA1C be high without diabetes?

As per research studies, 3.8% of non-diabetics have a raised A1C level (above 6.0). This class is perhaps found to have other risk factors for heart problems or type 2 diabetes.

Can I drink water before HbA1C test?

Yes, you can have water on empty stomach prior to a blood test. Actually, drinking enough water makes sure that you get precise test results. Dehydration may have an effect on blood tests like electrolyte, cholesterol, and BUN tests.

What is HbA1C test used for?

HbA1c test is another term for glycated hemoglobin test. It is useful for evaluating average blood glucose levels for previous three months. HbA1C is vital for every diabetic patient.

What is normal a1c levels for non diabetics?

The normal value of HbA1c blood test for non-diabetics is between 4% to 5.6%. i.e between 68 to 100 mg/dL

What does a1c stand for?

When the glucose binds to hemoglobin (Hb) it becomes Glycated hemoglobin HbA1c. A stands for adult and HbA1c is the most common type of hemoglobin present in blood that binds to glucose. Thus this test measures the amount of glucose binded to HbA1c.

What is hba1c glycated haemoglobin used for?

HbA1c test or Glycosylated hemoglobin test is a blood test carried out to find out whether you are diabetic or not. Glucose in our body binds to hemoglobin present in the blood. Thus, this blood test calculates the amount of glucose that binds to hemoglobin. Hemoglobin have a lifespan of 3 months. Thus, this test value gives the average amount of glucose present in the blood for past 3 months.

How does a1c test work?

HbA1C test works by measuring the amount of glucose that binds with the hemoglobin. A blood sample is drawn fromthe patient and the amount of binded hemoglobin and glucose is measured in percentage. If the values are less than 5.7 then the result outcome is normal.

What does the hba1c test indicate?

The Hemoglobin A1c blood test value measures the average amount of glucose present in the blood for the past 3 months. Thus, if the value is high it indicates prediabetics or diabetes.

Is fasting required for hba1c test?

The HbA1c (Hemoglobin A1c) is a very effective test for diabetes diagonsis. There is no need to fast before the test. You can eat and drink before getting tested.

What is hba1c in blood test?

HbA1c is known as glycosylated hemoglobin test.  This blood test is used to find out the average blood sugar levels for 3 months. It does by calculating the amount of glucose that binds to hemoglobin.

How much does hba1c test cost?

The HbA1c (Hemoglobin A1c) is a blood test carried out for diabetes diagonsis. It can cost from INR 300 to INR 800. Price varies from city to city and as per patient preference like sample collection from home.

What is the normal hba1c level?

HbA1c (Hemoglobin A1c), blood test measures the average blood sugar levles. The normal levels for this test is a value betwee 4% and 5.6%. Values in the range of 5.7% and 6.4% signfy prediabetic condition, while value above 6.5% signifies diabetes.

What is full form of hba1c?

The term HbA1c refers to glycated haemoglobin. It develops when haemoglobin, a protein within red blood cells that carries oxygen throughout your body, joins with glucose in the blood, becoming ‘glycated’.

What is the cost of Hemoglobin A1c level test?

Well, the cost of this test is a bit higher than the normal blood sugar test but it gives you the most accurate results over the past three months. In India, the average cost of HbA1C or glycosylate hemoglobin test is around Rs 500.

Can you check the gestational diabetes with HbA1c ?

No. Gestational diabetes cannot be diagnosed with an HbA1c blood test. An oral glucose tolerance test is used instead to check gestational diabetes.

Can HbA1c blood test be done at home?

A home test is ideally good for those who are known diabetic. You can get the FDA approved test kit to monitor your glucose management over the time. You just have to follow the HbA1c test procedure mentioned in the kit to get the test results.

How is glycosylated hemoglobin tested?

There is no need of fasting before the test unlike the blood glucose test. Glycosylated Hb test is a simple blood test. Blood samples can be taken by the doctor or pathologist.

A1c Chart, Test, Levels, & Normal Range

The individuals having the stable blood glucose level should have a Hemoglobin A1c test done in every six months. However, people with diabetes or those who are trying to have a control on their blood sugar level should get this test done every three months.

Reference:

  1. https://www.medicinenet.com/hemoglobin_a1c_test/article.htm
  2. https://www.emedicinehealth.com/hemoglobin_a1c_hba1c/article_em.htm
  3. https://www.healthline.com/health/type-2-diabetes/ac1-test#TOC_TITLE_HDR_1
  4. https://www.medifee.com/tests/hba1c-cost/
 
Last Updated on by Dr. Damanjit Duggal 

Disclaimer

The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.

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