What is prediabetes?

When a person has prediabetes, blood glucose (sugar) levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be considered type 2 diabetes. About one third of adults over the age of 18 have prediabetes, yet nearly 90% do not know it.1 Research shows that prediabetes can often be reversed through modest lifestyle changes such as healthy eating, increased activity, and weight loss.2

Without lifestyle change, prediabetes can lead to type 2 diabetes within five years.3 When a person has type 2 diabetes, their body cannot properly take sugar in the foods they eat, and turn it into fuel their bodies need to function. Type 2 diabetes can lead to serious health issues such as heart attack, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and loss of toes, feet, or legs.

A banner informing that 1 in 3 adults have prediabetes and encouraging to take the test.

How can I prevent type 2 diabetes?

  • Stay at a healthy weight through eating a healthy diet, and being physically active.
  • See your health care provider and have your blood glucose (sugar) checked regularly.
  • Find out if you are at risk by taking the Prediabetes Risk Test.
  • If you have prediabetes or are at risk, sign up for the National Diabetes Prevention Program (NDPP). Find an in-person or online program near you.



If you are a health care provider, employer, or payer, please visit our pages with information specific to you.



What is the National Diabetes Prevention Program?

The National Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) was developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help people with prediabetes, or those at risk of developing type 2 diabetes, make lifestyle changes to prevent type 2 diabetes. Evidence shows participants in the program can reduce their risk for developing type 2 diabetes by 58%. For those 60 or older, risk reduction is 71%. If you participate in the National DPP, you can expect:

  • A CDC-approved, evidence-based curriculum with lessons, handouts, and other resources to help you make healthy changes.
  • Year-long support. During the first six months of the program, you will meet about once a week, during the second six months, you'll meet once or twice a month.
  • A lifestyle coach specially trained to facilitate discussion and help you learn new skills, set and meet goals, and stay motivated.
  • A support group with similar goals and challenges. Together, you will share ideas, celebrate successes, and work to overcome obstacles. In some programs, participants stay in touch with each other during the week. It's easier to make changes when you're working as a group, rather than doing it on your own.
  • A goal to lose 5% to 7% of your starting weight (that's about 10–14 pounds for someone who weighs 200 pounds).
Participant testimonial

Mike joined the CDC-led National DPP and found support he needed to make healthy lifestyle changes, and reverse his prediabetes diagnosis.

Prediabetes Resources

1. 2011-2014 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and 2015 U.S. Census Bureau Data.
2. DPP Research Group. 2002. Reduction in the Incidence of Type 2 Diabetes with Lifestyle Intervention or Metformin. New Eng J Med, 346 (6): 393-403.
3. Narayan KM, et al. 2003. Lifetime risk for diabetes mellitus in the United States. JAMA, 290 (14): 1884-90.

Last Revised: March 11, 2019