Short for hemoglobin A1C, or HbA1C test, this laboratory test can now be performed in doctor’s offices. It measures the glycosylated hemoglobin stored in red blood cells. By doing so, it reveals the average blood glucose level over the latest 90 days. A medical professional can determine from the A1C number how well diabetic treatments are keeping the person’s blood sugar levels under control. It doesn’t reveal the ups and downs, which have been determined to have an important role in diabetic damage such as eye harm.

1. Glycosylated hemoglobin chemistry

The A1C test measures glycosylated hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is a protein in red blood cells which transports oxygen and also accumulates glucose in its travels. If it continues to collect glucose without also releasing it at about the same rate over time, there is an imbalance in the body’s use of glucose.