People with type 2 diabetes are more likely to develop heart disease or have a stroke compared with those who don’t have diabetes—and at a younger age.
Diabetes is among the strongest risk factors for heart and vascular disease. It’s right up there with smoking and having high blood pressure or high cholesterol.
Having diabetes means you have too much sugar (also called glucose) in your blood. It can affect the way your heart works, and harm blood vessels. For example, the lining of the blood vessels may become thicker, which can impair blood flow. Many people
have poor blood flow in their legs and feet, which can lead to numbness and weakness. Diabetes can damage other organs as well, including the kidneys.
Diabetes and heart disease share many of the same risk factors, such as having high cholesterol, being overweight, not exercising and smoking.
If you have diabetes, it doesn’t mean heart disease is bound to happen. In many cases, there are steps you can take to keep your diabetes in check and stay ahead of heart disease. But it’s not always easy. If you have or develop heart disease, then you will have to manage several conditions, which can seem daunting.