LOS ANGELES (KABC) --Health experts say if you have pre-diabetes then the long term damage of diabetes, especially to your heart, blood vessels and kidneys may already be starting.
Common warning signs like weight loss, blurred vision or feeling thirsty all the time aren't present in pre-diabetes.
"Starting at age 45, we should be screening every three years for type 2 diabetes. However, some people are at risk even earlier than that," endocrinologist Dr. Amber Champion said.
A study out of the New England Journal of Medicine found something more effective than any drug in reducing diabetes risk, especially if you're pre-diabetic.
"Losing weight can really be beneficial in preventing the onset or delaying the onset of diabetes for many years," Champion said.
Champion said if you're overweight, try to reduce your body weight even just by 5 percent. Exercise at least 30 minutes, five times a week, and cutback on sugary drinks, she said.
Other tips he offered: try to make vegetables about 50 percent of each meal and increase the amount of fiber you eat.
Doctors said making these changes could reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by as much as 58 percent.