Glucose intolerance, which may also be known as impaired glucose regulation (IGR), is a term used to describe an inability to adequately control blood glucose levels.
A number of conditions characterized by insulin resistance are denoted as forms of glucose intolerance, including:
- Impaired glucose tolerance (IGT)
- Impaired fasting glucose (IFG)
- Prediabetes (itself an umbrella term for IGT and IFG)
- Type 2 diabetes
- Gestational diabetes
Testing for glucose intolerance
Glucose intolerance can be diagnosed with the following tests:
- Plasma glucose test: a blood glucose level of 6.1 or more following 8 hours of fasting
- Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT): a blood glucose level of 7.9 or more 2 hours after drinking 75g of glucose
Read more on diabetes screening tests.
Treating glucose intolerance
The conditions listed as forms of glucose intolerance are each principally treated with lifestyle changes such as:
- Maintaining a healthy, balanced, low calorie diet
- Taking regular physical activity
- Cutting down on alcohol intake
- Quitting smoking
Weight loss is usually one of the main aims in treating glucose intolerance.
Medication for glucose intolerance
If blood glucose levels remain too high, despite lifestyle changes, medication can be prescribed. A range of medication is available ranging from tablets to medication such as incretin mimetics or insulin that has to be injected.
Find out more about treatment available for glucose intolerance in our controlling type 2 diabetes page.
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Last reviewed: February 9, 2015 at 10:16
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