Diabetes which is referred to as the condition of a person having high blood glucose or when the body cells are not sensitive to insulin.
People with diabetes are said to be at high risk of having a heart disease or stroke according to the America Heart Association. The good news is that the Association reported that diabetes is one of the major contributing risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
In this article I will be talking about the link between heart disease and diabetes. This will give you adequate information of the risk a person who is diabetic has regarding any heart related disease.
What is the link between heart disease and diabetes
According to the American Heart Association there is strong link between diabetes and cardiovascular disease. It is said that people of the age 65 and older who have diabetes, 68% of them die of heart related disease while 16% of them are reported to die of a stroke.
The American Heart Association further states that people with diabetes are four times more likely to develop heart disease than people with no diabetes.
The risk is extended to the point where it is said that people with diabetes tend to develop heart related disease earlier on in their lives.
The reasons for this is because a person with diabetes has the following factors which contribute significantly to heart disease.
This thus increases their chances of developing heart disease even earlier in their lives.
Research and studies have shown a correlation between hypertension and insulin resistance. Hypertension and diabetes greatly increases the chances of a person getting a heart disease.
- Bad cholesterol levels
Generally people who have diabetes have abnormal cholesterol levels: Their bad cholesterol (LDL) is very high while their good cholesterol level (HDL) is very low. This makes their risk to heart disease will be greatly increased.
Factors out of your control
When it comes to heart disease there are factors you cannot control since they are in born. These uncontrollable factors for heart disease are generally those you inherit from your parents from birth.
If you already have diabetes however you have more added uncontrollable factors which increases your risk even more.
Below are the further uncontrollable factors that you have if you have diabetes:
- Family history
If you have a history of your family having either one or both of these diseases (heart disease or diabetes) you are likely to develop both these diseases very easily because of the genes may already have.
As you grow older you are more at risk on getting diabetic heart disease since your immune system is not as effective.
As you age you should always ensure your daily exercise doesn’t stop to keep your heart very healthy and strong.
Causes of heart disease in diabetic people
At this stage you may be wondering what is actually the cause of people with diabetes to be at risk of getting heart disease. Well actually the process is somewhat a bit complex.
I will lay it out in this article the best way I can.
There is said to be four factors which cause a person who is diabetic to contract a heart disease, The following are the factors:
- Cardiovascular disease, High blood pressure combination
- Metabolic syndrome
- Insulin resistance
The diabetic heart disease may be caused by either one of or a combination of these factors I mentioned above.
This is the reason why it is wise to know all about these factors to lessen your chances of getting diabetic heart disease.
I will expand on each of these so you can know a lot about them.
Cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and diabetes are all equally the same when it comes to damaging your heart.
Cardiovascular disease is linked to or develops from high blood pressure since the heart’s muscles get weakened due to the stress in the heart arteries.
Cardiovascular disease is the disease whereby the heart arteries are blocked which causes the heart to get less oxygenated blood. Less oxygenated blood causes the muscles and the effectiveness of the heart to reduced drastically.
Diabetes alone causes huge blood glucose which makes the blood more sticky which then causes it to stick to the heart arteries. This cause blood to not be able circulate properly with oxygen in the body.
This makes the combination of these 3 factors too great which then comprises the functioning of the heart.
- Metabolic syndrome
Metabolic syndrome is a condition of having many bad health conditions. These conditions are high blood pressure, excess fat around the waist, high blood sugar level, abnormal cholesterol levels and triglyceride levels. However,having just one of these conditions doesn’t mean that you have metabolic syndrome.
Having these conditions or the metabolic syndrome greatly increases your risk of getting heart disease, diabetes or stroke.
The insulin resistance occurs to people with type 2 diabetes. This makes the blood glucose increase in their body which leads to more blood clots.
This process makes the people more prone to heart disease.
The atherosclerosis is a heart problem where there is a plaque in the blood which eventually causes a heart attack. This heart disease occurs commonly in people with diabetes.
Although the chances of getting a heart disease are alleviated for a person with diabetes there are still ways in which you can prevent this disease from causing havoc to your heart. Below are the ways to prevent the heart disease.
Being a diabetic person you may already have many food restrictions or set ways to eat. But to reduce your chances of being heart healthy you diet needs to be even more regulated. You may look into eating a more heart healthy diet.
This is done by focusing on foods that are good for your heart and that will keep your heart arteries unclogged.
These two meals tend to take a lot of portion in what you eat daily so if you maximize in eating heart healthy in all respect you will help keep heart disease at bay.
To get rid of obesity which contributes to diabetes it is vital to add exercise as a daily routine. The best exercises for heart disease is that which gives you less hassle and is easy to do. You can read this article here.
- Reduce sugar/glucose in your daily consumption
Sugar is a big one because it has the potential of bring both the diabetes and heart disease in a person’s life.
It is wise to look for drinks and food that have no added sugar or excessive sugar. If you really want to have sugar in your drinks or food rather aim to get the source from fruits such as a banana.
This will assist not only in managing diabetes if you already have it. but it will reduce drastically the chances of you getting a heart disease.
- Taking aspirins
Taking aspirins is a very good preventative or protective measure for diabetic heart disease. Aspirin is a medication used to prevent a person from having a heart attack.
It can also been used to unclogged heart arteries which is a condition that can develop in people with diabetes.
Although I wouldn’t 100% comfortable using aspirins due to their many side effects but it is a good choice. Please consult a doctor before taking aspirins as this medication can cause bad effects to some people.
The following are the related side effects from aspirins:
- Upsetting of stomach
- Gastrointestinal Ulcerations
Increasing your HDL and decreasing your LDL cholesterol will help with preventing your heart arteries to be clogged which is the main contributor to diabetic heart disease.
This will ensure your heart arteries are not only clean but will keep your heart artery walls very strong and healthy.
The American Heart Association recommends a LDL (bad) cholesterol level of less than100 mg/dl.
You can also do this by eating omega 3 rich foods such as fish. The best choice is to follow a mediterranean diet as it will give you all the benefits of omega 3 naturally.
The best choice to increase your HDL cholesterol is to take a flaxseed oil capsule supplements daily or if you do not enjoy swallowing capsules you can substitute it with flaxseed oil as it can be incorporated into your food too.
Having heart disease which is related to diabetes is a very chronic condition and if not managed before it happens it can be harmful to your life and reduce your lifespan.
The great thing is that if you take the right steps,as mentioned above, you can be able to put heart disease at bay while you are diabetic.
The great thing about the prevention factors which are mentioned above is that they can be used together or in isolation depend on what is effective to a specific person.