If you’re one of the 34 million Americans who have diabetes, you know how overwhelming it is to keep track of your numbers. But be sure to keep a close eye on your blood pressure since about 60% of diabetes patients have high blood pressure, too. When you have both conditions, your chance of getting heart disease is even higher.
Learning how to reduce your risk of high blood pressure will help you live a healthier life and lower your chances of getting heart disease. We’re here to walk you through the risks of having high blood pressure with diabetes, along with tips on how to maintain healthy blood pressure.
What is High Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure is the force of blood that runs through your blood vessels. When your blood pressure is high, your blood moves with too much force, and your heart has to work harder.
Since most people don’t have any symptoms of high blood pressure, you can have it and not even know. Getting it checked is usually the only way to find out. If you have diabetes, have your blood pressure checked at every doctor visit and try to keep an eye on it in between with a quality at-home blood pressure monitor.
What’s the Link Between Blood Pressure and Diabetes?
Having diabetes or high blood pressure puts you at higher risk for the other. The two conditions share some of the same risk factors, including:
- Being overweight
- High cholesterol
What Is Metabolic Syndrome?
Metabolic syndrome, a group of conditions, is another risk that diabetes and high blood pressure share. It can lead to serious health problems if it’s not managed. They include:
- A large waistline
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugars
- High levels of triglycerides (a type of fat)
- Low levels of “good” (HDL) cholesterol
When you have three or more of these, your risk for heart disease is much higher. That’s why it’s so important to control your blood pressure if you have diabetes.
What Can You Do?
Work with your health care provider to control your diabetes and blood pressure. They can help you determine steps you can take to prevent or lower your blood pressure numbers with healthy lifestyle choices such as:
- Don’t smoke
- Eat a healthy, low-salt diet
- Limit alcohol intake
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Stay active
- Take medicine for high blood pressure as directed
Whole-Person Diabetes Care
While others focus on helping you cope with diabetes, AdventHealth is here to help you take charge and manage it. Our expert research team is developing new treatments and working toward a cure. Our nationally recognized nutrition and lifestyle programs will give you the tools you need to care for yourself with confidence at home. We’ll treat you with the compassionate care you deserve at every appointment. Visit us here to learn more and feel whole.