How is Diabetes linked with Heart Disease?
Did you know 2 out of 3 people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke? The risk of heart disease nearly doubles every 10 years you have type 2 diabetes. Having Diabetes means that you are more likely to develop heart disease or have a greater chance of a heart attack. People with diabetes are also more likely to have high blood pressure or high cholesterol, which are conditions that increase the chances of developing a cardiovascular disease. The first step to reducing your chances of cardiovascular disease is understanding your risk!
High Blood Pressure: Studies have shown a positive correlation between hypertension and insulin resistance, which demonstrates the increased risk for cardiovascular disease. High blood pressure simply means that your heart is working much harder than it should. The blood is moving through the vessels with a great force.
High Cholesterol: Cholesterol levels indicate the amount of fat that is in your blood. Patients with diabetes often have an abnormally high LDL (bad) cholesterol level and low HDL (good) cholesterol level. HDL Cholesterol is known to help protect the heart, while LDL clogs the arteries.
Obesity: Obesity is a major risk factor of cardiovascular disease and strongly correlates with insulin resistance. This is mainly because obesity is linked with other risk factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and abnormal triglyceride levels.
Poorly Controlled Blood Sugar: Low blood sugar is a major symptom of Diabetes. Low blood sugar in individuals may be due to taking too much medication, skipping meals, or exercising more than usual. High blood pressure on the other hand can cause damage to nerves, blood vessels, and organs. The leading causes for hyperglycemia or high blood pressure is forgetting to take insulin, eating too many carbs, becoming inactive, and stress.
KNOW YOUR NUMBERS
A1C Test- (The Glycated Hemoglobin Test) This is a blood test that tests for your average blood glucose levels over the past 2-3 months and confirms whether or not your diabetes treatment plan is working. This should be measured by a doctor at least twice a year.The American Diabetes Association suggests an A1C of less than 7%. The blood sugar for many adults with diabetes are 70-130 mg/dL before meals and less than 180 mg/dL 1-2 hours after after the start of the meal.
How does it work?
When Glucose enters your bloodstream it glycates or links up with the Hemoglobin molecule. The greater the concentration of glucose in the blood, the greater percentage of glycated hemoglobin. Therefore by measuring the percentage of A1C in the blood, you are measuring the average glucose control. Overall, lowering your A1C levels even by 1% can improve your health and help in managing your diabetes. Research has shown that every 1% drop in A1C can reduce the risk of diabetic problems that affect the small blood vessels, such as those of the eyes, kidneys, or nerves.