Receiving a diagnosis of diabetes can be frightening enough. When you combine diabetes and heart disease, the results can be catastrophic. The diabetes and heart disease statistics are downright scary.

According to the American Diabetes Association, statistics regarding heart disease and diabetes include:

  • Information taken in 2004 showed that over 65% of death certificates related to diabetes also listed heart disease as a cause of death for people over the age of 65.
  • Information taken in 2004 showed that over 15% of death certificates related to diabetes also listed stroke as a cause of death for people over the age of 65.
  • Adults with a diabetes diagnosis are two to four times more likely to die of a heart related condition than those without diabetes.
  • Adults with diabetes are two to four times more likely to suffer from a stroke than those without diabetes.


These coronary heart disease and diabetes statistics do not lie. If you suffer from diabetes, it is imperative that you control your condition well and lead a heart healthy life.


Does Diabetes Cause Heart Disease?


Many people wonder, “How is diabetes related to heart disease? What is the relationship between diabetes and heart disease? What is my diabetes heart disease risk? Does one condition cause the other?” If these are questions that you are asking, we have the answers.

Diabetes is a metabolic condition that causes the body to become unable to absorb and metabolize blood sugar properly. This can be caused by the inability of the pancreas to produce the insulin hormone (type 1 diabetes), or the inability of the cells in the body to use insulin properly (type 2 diabetes.) In either case, when diabetes goes undiagnosed or is poorly controlled, it leads to hyperglycemia (high blood sugar). This condition is extremely detrimental to all of the systems in the body, including the circulatory system.

When the muscle and fat cells in the body are not absorbing nutrients correctly, the blood is not getting what it needs to supply to the other parts of the body. Thus, the entire circulatory system suffers which can and does lead to heart disease, stroke, coronary artery disease, and eventually death. Thus, it is important to understand the risk factors of diabetes and heart disease.


Diabetes and Coronary Heart Disease Risk Factors


There are many risk factors when it comes to the combination of diabetes and coronary heart disease. According to the National Diabetes Association, the biggest risk factors include:

  • Poorly controlled diabetes
  • Obesity, a poor or unhealthy diet, lack of physical activity
  • High blood pressure (greater than 130/85)
  • High cholesterol levels
  • Smoking


If you have been diagnosed with diabetes and you want to avoid adding heart disease to your ailments, avoid these risk factors and if you have them, fix the problem.

Your doctor can help you set up a treatment plan for diabetes with heart disease. The treatment will most likely include a healthy diet, insulin, oral medications, a regular physical activity plan, and regular monitoring of your conditions. If you are having difficulty following your treatment plan, contact your doctor to discuss alternatives or to get a referral to a specialist.