Understanding the Link Between Heart Disease and Diabetes

It’s been a long-established fact that diabetes is never a good thing to have. While it’s not as life-threatening as other conditions, having diabetes combined with heart disease could still be fatal.

One thing has become clear in the past few years: the way people with diabetes are treated needs to change and take into consideration the other conditions that affect people with diabetes. In this guide, we look into how cardiovascular outcomes in people with diabetes can be improved and why it’s important.

Diabetes and Heart Disease

While diabetes can cause serious problems for the heart, the other way around is also true. As stated above, diabetes and heart disease can form a deadly combination.

The combination of high blood pressure and high cholesterol presents a much bigger danger than either condition alone. Both are caused by excessive weight, which is a major risk factor for both conditions.

Heart disease can take many forms, including coronary heart disease and peripheral vascular disease. The complications that arise from these conditions can be fatal.

Even without complications, heart disease can take a big toll on people’s quality of life. Medications and treatments can cause side effects that can pose serious problems.

Diabetes Treatment is More Than Just Lowering Blood Sugar

The usual treatment of diabetes is to control blood sugar levels as much as possible and keep them under tight control. Most people assume diabetes treatment means lowering blood sugar with diabetes drugs and insulin.

However, diabetes treatment should include a few other things, such as:

  • Controlling other cardiovascular risk factors, including cholesterol and blood pressure.
  • Controlling other chronic conditions, such as thyroid disease and kidney disease.
  • Treating any conditions that can aggravate or cause complications from diabetes, including eye disease.

Benefits of Treating Diabetes and Heart Disease Together

Some doctors think about the heart when it comes to diabetes, while others think about diabetes when it comes to the heart. The truth of the matter is that people with diabetes have a much higher risk of developing serious heart problems.

If doctors treat diabetes more as a whole condition, including the heart, it can help people reduce the risk of developing heart disease. Treating each condition together and treating the patient as a whole can help.

Diabetes and heart disease treatment means that the patient’s doctor must take into account not just the heart, but the other conditions that the patient has, such as:

  • Diet and exercise habits
  • The patient’s stress levels
  • The patient’s other diseases, such as kidney disease and eye disease
  • The patient’s lifestyle, such as smoking and alcohol use

The New Frontier of Diabetes Care

As stated earlier, diabetes treatment has remained the same for a long time. But lately, it has become apparent that diabetes treatment needs to change.

There are a variety of reasons that diabetes treatment should be changed. One is that the overall approach to treating diabetes is no longer working. People who have it are getting sicker more quickly.

Another reason that needs to be understood is that diabetes is not a single disease but a whole spectrum of different conditions. Each person’s diabetes is different and has its own problems, signs, and symptoms.

Even though diabetes is a spectrum of different conditions, it’s predicted that one out of every two people diagnosed with diabetes has multiple chronic conditions. These conditions include:

  • Heart disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Eye disease
  • Stroke
  • Depression and anxiety


Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in people with diabetes. Thus, the treatment of diabetes must take into account the other conditions that the patient has, including heart disease.

At Garden State Medical Group, we believe in providing comprehensive and individualized care for all our patients. We make it our goal to save more than your life through our superior diagnostics and treatment options. Schedule an appointment with us whenever you need help from a reliable primary care doctor.

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