Diabetes and Heart Attack

Diabetes is hard enough to deal with in everyday life. Unfortunately, this disease opens the door for many other serious conditions, one of which is heart disease, which can lead to a heart attack.

Heart Disease

Heart disease, also known as cardiovascular disease, is not only a major illness itself, but it is also the number one killer of individuals who have diabetes. It is so prevalent among diabetic adults that they are up to four times as likely to have heart disease as adults who are not diabetic.

Risk Factors

Certain risk factors increase the likelihood of developing heart disease. One is having a family history of heart disease, especially at an early age. Another risk factor is having abdominal fat, also known as central fat or belly fat. This is dangerous because excess weight carried in the stomach elevates LDL, or bad cholesterol. This is the cholesterol that lines the walls of arteries.

Diabetics who do not regulate their glucose levels risk the possibility of developing such conditions as high lipid problems, high blood pressure and obesity, all of which are also risk factors for a heart attack. Diabetics who smoke also double their risk of heart attack.

Prevention

Diabetics can not only control their disease but also work to prevent heart attacks by eating the right mix of fruits, vegetables and proteins. By choosing foods that are low on the glycemic index, they are not only making food choices that help manage their diabetes, but these foods are also heart-healthy.

The less dependent a diabetic is on their medication or insulin, the better they will feel and the healthier their heart will become. Exercise is also a good way to control heart disease and keep diabetes at bay.

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