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The ABCs of Diabetes and Heart Disease

June 30, 2011

I recently noticed that several people close to me are living with diabetes, and a few have had to make sudden or repeated visits to the hospital. Out of concern, Ihealthy abcs looked up this information for them from the American Diabetes Association.

There’s a big link between diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. People with diabetes have more than two time the risk of having a heart attack or stroke. In fact, two out of three people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke, also called cardiovascular disease. Clogged blood vessels can lead to heart attack, stroke, and other problems. But there are treatments for heart disease, stroke, and blood vessel disease.

Healthy ABCs

Taking care of your diabetes and the conditions that come with it can help you lower your chances of heart and blood vessel disease. Every step you take to keep your ABC’s (A1C, blood pressure, and cholesterol) in your target range will help lower your risk.

A is for A1C.

Your A1C check, which also may be reported as estimated average glucose (eAG) tells you your average blood glucose for the past 2 to 3 months.

B is for blood pressure.

High blood pressure makes your heart work harder than it should.

C is for cholesterol.

Your cholesterol numbers tell you about the amount of fat in your blood. Some kinds, like HDL cholesterol, help protect your heart. Others, like LDL cholesterol, can clog your arteries. High triglycerides raise your risk for a heart attack or a stroke.

Other conditions:

Types of Heart Disease: Coronary Artery Disease, Heart Failure

Heart and Blood Vessel Disease

Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) - Talk to your doctor if you have mild leg pain, troubling walking, tingling in the legs, or other symptoms of PAD.

Photo credit:  Jami Stallard

Diabetes in America