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Blood sugar levels: what’s normal, what’s not and how to measure them

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Blood sugar levels: what’s normal, what’s not and how to measure them


Blood sugar levels: what’s normal, what’s not, and how to measure them; What blood glucose levels mean and what range is healthy. I hope I haven’t scared you away, but when it comes to our health it’s important to know exactly what’s going on inside of our bodies. Without further ado, let’s get into what blood sugar means, how to measure it, and everything else you need to know.

What is blood sugar?
Blood sugar, or glucose, is your body’s main energy source. We get glucose from the food we eat, and our blood carries it around to all the cells in the body to give them the energy to function. Glucose mainly comes from the carbohydrates we eat, though our bodies can convert protein and fat into sugar too if needed.

Glucose from protein is typically stored in the liver and doesn’t enter the bloodstream, so eating protein-rich foods won’t raise your blood sugar too much. Fats slow down the digestion of carbohydrates, which causes a delayed rise in blood sugar. High blood sugar can be an issue because it usually leads to sugar crashes, which are no fun — symptoms include fatigue, headaches, and the jitters. So, eat meals balanced with protein, fat, and carbs to avoid this.

Blood sugar is closely related to insulin, a hormone secreted by the pancreas that helps your body use glucose. Insulin keeps your blood sugar from getting too high or too low — if you eat more sugar than you need at the moment, the hormone helps store the glucose in your liver until it’s needed for energy.

You probably also know about blood sugar in the context of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is a condition in which people are unable to make insulin, so they need to inject the hormone in order to keep their blood sugar levels stable. People with Type 2 diabetes, which usually occurs later in life, either don’t secrete insulin or are resistant to it.

How do I measure blood sugar?
If you have diabetes, you probably already keep a watchful eye on your blood sugar through the use of a continuous glucose monitor (a CGM) or a blood sugar meter (which involves pricking your fingertip). Blood sugar measurement is also typically included in routine lab work for people without diabetes — your physician will usually order a glycated hemoglobin (A1C) test, which measures your average blood sugar over the past two to three months.

Say your A1C test comes back with no sign of diabetes — constantly measuring your blood sugar can still be helpful. For instance, some people experiment with using a CGM to see how their body responds to different types of food. However, it’s good to note that this is a fairly cost-intensive way of figuring out your nutrition and writing down a food diary that includes how you felt after each meal will also help you figure out what to eat.

What should my blood sugar levels be?
Your blood sugar level changes depending on what you’ve eaten, whether you’ve exercised and other factors (more on that later) but we have some general guidelines to determine what levels are healthy.

For generally healthy individuals (without diabetes) who haven’t eaten for eight hours or more, a normal blood sugar level is between 3.885-5.495mmol/L. When you’ve eaten in the past two hours, it should be no higher than 7.8mmol/L.

Only a medical professional can diagnose diabetes or another issue with your blood sugar, so if you’re concerned about your blood sugar levels, check with a doctor.

How can I tell if my blood sugar is irregular?
Again, only a doctor can diagnose a problem with your blood sugar. But you may be wondering how to know if it’s something you should get checked out. There can be two main issues with your blood sugar — either it’s consistently too high or too low. Even if you don’t have diabetes, there are some signs that your blood sugar levels are not functioning normally.

Hypoglycemia is a condition in which your blood sugar is too low. Signs include an irregular heartbeat, fatigue, shakiness, and tingling or numbness in your face. If you consistently feel this way when you get hungry or between meals, talk to your healthcare provider.

On the flipside, hyperglycemia happens when your blood sugar is too high and this can happen to nondiabetics. Symptoms include frequent urination, increased thirst, and headache. If you think you’re hyperglycemic and can’t keep fluids or food down, call for emergency medical assistance.

What factors affect blood sugar?
You can guess that carbohydrate intake and insulin production are at least partly responsible for your blood sugar levels. But the list is much longer — almost every lifestyle choice you make can affect your blood sugar.

Here’s just a partial list.

  1. Exercise can affect insulin sensitivity, leading to lower blood sugar for up to 48 hours.
  2. Alcohol intake increases insulin production, causing low blood sugar.
  3. Stress hormones like cortisol can raise blood sugar because your body wants access to energy in order to escape what it perceives as a dangerous situation.
  4. Medications, especially statins and diuretics, can raise blood sugar. Statins are used to treat cholesterol, and diuretics for high blood pressure.
  5. Diet is a major player in blood sugar. Eating too many simple carbs at once can cause levels to skyrocket, while protein intake leads to a slower increase in blood sugar.
  6. Dehydration raises blood sugar because with less water in your body the glucose concentration will be higher.
  7. Other surprising factors can affect your blood sugar, like a sunburn or gum disease, so if you’re dealing with a blood sugar issue and can’t figure out what’s causing your spikes and dips, talk to a health care professional.

    —:cnet

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Tertiary students in Ghana can now apply for student loans with ONLY Ghana Card- as Bawumia launches “No Guarantor Student Loan Policy”

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no guarantor student loan policy

Tertiary students in Ghana can now apply for student loans with ONLY Ghana Card- as Bawumia launches “No Guarantor Student Loan Policy”

The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has launched the No Guarantor Student Loan Policy at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi, on Wednesday, June 8, 2022.

The No Guarantor Student Loan Policy, a promise by the Akufo-Addo government prior to the 2020 elections, is to make tertiary education accessible to Ghanaian youth, especially graduates from the highly subscribed Free Senior High School policy.

With the No Guarantor Student Loan Policy, the cumbersome and restrictive policy of students providing three SSNIT contributors as guarantors before they could access student loans for tertiary education has been abolished. The No Guarantor Student Loan Policy Dr. Bawumia explained, makes it possible for qualified young Ghanaians to access loans to fund their tertiary education, using their Ghana Card.

REMOVAL OF BARRIERS TO EDUCATION

Speaking at the launch, Vice President Bawumia said, the coming into fruition of the pro-poor policy, will remove barriers and significantly increase inclusive access to tertiary education.

“The removal of the guarantor requirement is a critical first step to ensuring cost is not a barrier to access and participation in tertiary education,” Dr. Bawumia said.

“Indeed, these are exciting times to be a youth in Ghana. One can go through education from basic to tertiary with guaranteed support from Government.”

The Vice President noted that globally, loans have enabled financially challenged individuals to go through Universities and pay after graduation and the government of President Akufo-Addo recognised this need, and the challenges associated with students getting guarantors to secure loans, hence the introduction of the No Gurantor Policy to ease the burden of parents of qualified Free SHS graduates.

Expressing his delight over the launch of the policy and how it will help the poor, Dr. Bawumia gave startling statistics of how many students are unable to access guarantor-required student loans, thus, possibly being denied access to tertiary education.

“Evidence shows that the guarantor requirement poses a barrier to access. Out of the 325,000 eligible students whose details were submitted by all the tertiary institutions on the Student Loans portfolio, only 9.6% could access the loan in the 2019/20 academic year,’ Dr. Bawumia revealed.

“Similarly, only 8.4% of eligible students could access loans in 2016/2017, 9.8% in 2017/18, and 8.6% in 2015/16. Further, in the 2019/20 academic year, 42% of the 7,552 loan applicants could not submit their completed forms because of difficulty finding eligible guarantors,” he added.

“We promised to remove the guarantor requirement as a condition for loan access in the 2020 manifesto of the NPP. In fulfillment of this promise, the Government has revised the policy; hence, tertiary students will not have to present a Guarantor in order to access student loans. Effective this school year, all eligible tertiary students will have to submit their Ghana Card to access the loans,” Dr. Bawumia said.

Dr. Bawumia also expressed delight that the No Guarantor Student Loan Policy has been made possible through the Ghanacard thanks to the investment the government has made in digital infrastructure, which has made the Ghanacard a reliable national identity card for Ghanaians.

“This is one of the benefits we derive as a country by prioritizing digitalization. It is at the core of every serious economic management.”

Various Speakers at the ceremony, including the Vice-Chancellor of KNUST Prof. Rita Akosua Dickson, and the  President of NUGS, Dennis Appiah Larbi,  expressed gratitude to the government of President Akufo-Addo for the policy.

All the speakers agree the policy will open doors for more brilliant but needy students to access tertiary education which they usually miss out due to lack of funding.

Also present at the ceremony was the Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, who expressed his Ministry’s commitment to ensuring the success of the policy.

The No Guarantor Student Loan Policy is another milestone in education after expanding access to secondary education through the Free SHS policy.

Qualified students are required to apply online to the Ghana Students Loan Trust with their Ghanacard and successful students will have their fees paid directly to their tertiary institutions.

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WAEC Releases 2022 BECE Timetable for all candidates

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2022 BECE Timetable

WAEC Releases 2022 BECE Timetable for all candidates

The West African Examination Council (WAEC) has released the 2022 BECE Timetable for all Candidates, both School and Private who are preparing to write the Junior High School leaving examination.

The released timetable for 2022 BECE shows that the 2022 examination will start on Monday 17th October 2022, and end on 21st October 2022. The first subject to be written will be Social Studie while the last paper is French.

BECE 2022 Examination Timetable

DATE SUBJECT CODE SUBJECT/PAPER DURATION TIME
   Monday, 17th October 2022 020/2 Social Studies 2(Essay) 1 hour 9.00 a.m.       – 10.00 a.m.
020/1 Social Studies 1 (Objective) 45 minutes 10.00 a.m.     – 10.45 a.m.
 070/2 Information and Communication Technology 2(Essay) 1 hour 1.00 p.m.       – 2.00 p.m.
 070/1 Information and Communication Technology 1(Objective) 45 minutes 2.00 p.m.       – 2.45 p.m.
   Tuesday, 18th October 2022 03o/2 Mathematics 2 (Essay) 1 hour 15 minutes 9.00 a.m.       – 10.15 a.m.
03o/1 Mathematics 1(Objective) 45 minutes 10.15 a.m.     – 11.00 a.m.
053/2-055/2 Basic Design and Technology 2(Essay) 1 hour 15 minutes 1.00 p.m.       – 2.15 p.m.
053/1-055/1 Basic Design and Technology 1 (Objective) 40 minutes 2.15 p.m.       – 2.55 p.m.
   Wednesday, 19th October 2022 001/2 English Language 2 (Essay) 1 hour 9.00 a.m.       – 10.00 a.m.
001/1 English Language 1(Objective) 1 hour 10.00 a.m.     – 11.00 a.m.
022/2 Religious and Moral Education 2(Essay) 1 hour 1.00 p.m.       – 2.00 p.m.
022/1 Religious and Moral Education 1(Objective) 45 minutes 2.00 p.m.       – 2.45 p.m.
   Thursday, 20th October 2022 033/2 Integrated Science 2 (Essay) 1 hour 9.00 a.m. 10.00 a.m.
033/1  Integrated Science 1 (Objective) 45 minutes 10.00 a.m. 10.45 a.m.
003/2 – 0013/2 Ghanaian Language and Culture 2 (Essay) 45 minutes 1.00 p.m. 1.45 p.m.
003/1-0013/1 Ghanaian Language and Culture 1 (Objective) 1 hour 1.45 p.m. 2.45 p.m.
  Friday, 121st October 2022  002/2 French 2 (Essay)  1 hour 15 minutes  9.00 a.m.    10.15 a.m.
 002/1 French 2(Objective)  45 minutes  10.15 a.m.    11.00 a.m.

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Government’s newly built Bosomtwe Girls STEM High school admits first batch of students

Bosomtwe Girls STEM High School is one of the newly built STEM schools that the government is building to train young Ghanaians in STEM

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Bosomtwe Girls STEM

Government’s newly built Bosomtwe Girls STEM High school admits first batch of students

Bosomtwe Girls STEM: It is quite obvious that President Akufo-Addo’s agenda to train the next generation of leaders in science and technology is becoming a reality.

The first batch of admitted students of Bosomtwe Girls STEM High School, located at Bosomtwe in the Ashanti Region has begun reporting to school.

The government believes that building more Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) senior high schools will significantly transform Ghana’s education sector.

This is aimed at equipping young men and women with the necessary knowledge at an early stage.

The education ministry is hopeful that paying serious attention to STEM will help bridge the development gap between Ghana and other first-world countries since products from the schools would be well-placed to make a real impact by solving societal problems.

The STEM drive has received a significant boost as one of the STEM schools under construction in the Ashanti Region, the Bosomtwe Girls STEM High School, has begun admitting students.

“Now we have started to train leaders in engineering, leaders in aviation, medical leaders, and the rest. This alone is best for the nation. We promise that we are going to be one of the best in this nation,” Mary Donkor, the Headmistress of the school, noted.

Education Minister, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum has described this as a significant milestone, as he says while the government has provided the needed logistics to the school, more resources would be invested there as well as other STEM schools being worked on across the country.

“We’ve opened Bosomtwe Girls STEM High School. It is so nice to meet the students. They’ve come from all over the country. I’ve seen those from Greater Accra, Ashanti, Bono and all over the country. This is going to be a national institution of excellence. The good news is that the science labs are done, the science equipment would be coming next week. They have a pick-up. Everything that the school needs is coming, so I’m excited”.

Some parents whose wards are among the pioneers attending the school are excited about the development.

“I started enquiring about the school when I heard of it from the Minister that it will be a STEM school for girls. It is necessary to equip the girls today, so they can grow up to be doctors, engineers, and the rest. I followed up on the progress of the school till I heard it has started operation. Although my daughter got admission into a top school, I insisted on admitting her to this school so that my daughter can benefit from the Minister’s vision. So I am calling on parents to bring their girl children who are yet to gain admission to any school to this school,” one of the parents stated.

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