• Print

Impaired glucose tolerance is a risk factor for Type 2 diabetes and for heart disease.

What is impaired glucose tolerance?

In people with impaired glucose tolerance, blood glucose levels are higher than normal but less than the level required for a diagnosis of diabetes. Blood glucose levels normally rise after eating a meal then gradually fall as the meal is digested. However in people with impaired glucose tolerance, these levels remain elevated.

Impaired glucose tolerance is detected through the same test used to detect diabetes - the oral glucose tolerance test.

Improvements in glucose tolerance can be achieved through participation in regular physical activity and weight reduction.

How many Australians have impaired glucose tolerance?

  • The 1999-2000 Australian Diabetes, Obesity and Lifestyle Study found that 10.6% of Australians aged 25 years and over had impaired glucose tolerance.
  • The prevalence for women (12.0%) was higher than for men at (9.2%).

Further information

See Diabetes for more information.