Tips on Managing Diabetes and Heart Disease
Diabetes can lead to a wide range of health conditions. One of the complications of diabetes is heart disease, which means that diabetes effectively increases your risk of heart attack. And, the risk of heart disease increases even more if a person also has high blood pressure, high cholesterol and/or kidney damage.
After a heart health incident, uncontrolled diabetes can also affect cardiac rehabilitation. For people with heart or blood vessel disease, exercise programs are often part of the rehabilitation process, but uncontrolled diabetes can rule out exercise as an option as it can pose a risk of complications.
It may seem overwhelming to deal with both diabetes and heart disease at the same time, but this also means that the healthy choices you make to take control of one also help to take control of the other.
Lifestyle choices play a big role in the management of heart disease and diseases like diabetes that can make heart conditions worse. Here are some steps you can take:
- Limit your sodium intake: Aim for less than 2,000mg per day
- Limit your alcohol consumption: Keep alcohol intake to no more than two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women
- Exercise regularly: Improving your fitness directly benefits your heart and blood vessels, but you should still talk to your doctor to design an exercise program that is safe for you.
- Strive to maintain a healthy weight: Exercise and eating a heart healthy diet can help you lose some pounds, and every pound makes a difference.
- Quit smoking: Smoking increases the risk of heart disease and limits your ability to exercise. The same applies to secondhand smoke as well.
To learn more about managing diabetes, visit https://www.pihhealth.org/services/diabetes-education/. For information and resources about caring for your heart, visit https://www.pihhealth.org/services/heart-care/.