What does an HbA1c level of 5.9 mean?

Published on 
February 14, 2024
Virta Team

An HbA1c level of 5.9 or (5.9%) means that your blood glucose level is elevated. HbA1c is a blood test showing what percentage of red blood cells have glucose molecules (or blood sugar) attached to them. Having less than 5.7% of red blood cells coated with glucose is normal. A rate of 5.9 means you are in the prediabetes range, along with approximately 98 million other adults in the United States. You should consult with your health provider to reduce your blood sugar before developing type 2 diabetes.

What signs and symptoms are associated with an HbA1c level of 5.9?

A person with an HbA1c level of 5.9 will not necessarily show any signs or symptoms of prediabetes. That doesn't mean that prediabetes is a benign condition. Heart disease risk is elevated even for someone with an HbA1c level of 5.9. Occasionally, an individual with a prediabetes diagnosis will experience diabetes-related complications such as a retinal bleed, neuropathy or even a stroke. The silent and insidious nature of prediabetes is why anyone with an HbA1c level of 5.9 should immediately consult their health care provider.

What can I do to lower my HbA1c from 5.9?

If you have an HbA1c level of 5.9, Virta can help you reverse your prediabetes. By making healthy lifestyle changes in a medical setting to reduce your carbohydrate intake, Virta can help you feel like yourself again. See if you’re eligible for Virta Health here.

HbA1c Ranges


An HbA1c level below 5.7 (or 5.7%) means that your blood glucose level is normal.


An HbA1c level between 5.7 (or 5.7%) and 6.4% means that you are in the prediabetes range.