diabetes and your heart
Heart disease is the most serious health complication people with type 2 diabetes can develop – and it can happen to you. When it comes to the number of lives taken by heart disease due to diabetes, even one is too many. 1 in 2 people with diabetes die of heart disease. But the good news is that the sooner you understand your risk, the sooner you can do something to reduce it.
Coronary artery disease (“narrowing and/or hardening of the arteries”) is the most common type of heart disease among people with type 2 diabetes. This happens when fatty deposits block the arteries that supply the heart with blood. Coronary artery disease can also lead to a heart attack.
Heart failure is a condition when the heart muscle is not pumping blood as well as it should. This results in the body not getting the amount of blood, oxygen, and nutrients it needs.
Diabetes is responsible for 30% of strokes and 40% of heart attacks in Canada. People with diabetes were also 3-4 times more likely to be admitted to hospital due to heart related conditions.
Heart disease is real – but so are the solutions you can take to reduce your risk:
- Talk to your doctor about your risk of heart disease, and some simple, immediate steps you can take to lower your risk.
- Remember: Even if your blood glucose is well managed, this doesn’t necessarily mean you are protected from the risks of heart disease.
If you have type 2 diabetes and a history of heart disease, controlling your blood sugar alone may not be enough. But, there are medications that – along with diet and exercise – have been proven to lower the risk of dying from problems related to your heart and blood vessels.