Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the leading cause of death in the world. The primary cause of death from CAD is a narrowing of the coronary arteries, which reduces the supply of oxygenated blood to the heart. Diabetes is a condition that increases the risk of developing CAD, as well as other cardiovascular diseases such as stroke, heart attack, and peripheral artery disease. In this article, we’ll explore the link between diabetes and coronary artery disease and discuss how to manage your risk.
What Is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a chronic condition that occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot use the insulin that it produces effectively. Insulin is a hormone that helps the body use glucose (sugar) from food for energy. When the body does not have enough insulin or is unable to use it properly, glucose builds up in the bloodstream and can cause a range of health problems. There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2.
What Is Coronary Artery Disease?
Coronary artery disease (CAD) is a condition in which the coronary arteries become narrowed or blocked due to the buildup of fatty deposits, called plaques. This can reduce the supply of oxygenated blood to the heart, leading to chest pain, heart attack, or even death. CAD is often caused by lifestyle factors such as smoking, poor diet, and lack of physical activity, but it can also be caused by conditions such as diabetes and high cholesterol.
How Does Diabetes Cause Coronary Artery Disease?
People with diabetes are at an increased risk of developing CAD due to the effect diabetes has on the body. People with diabetes may have higher levels of fatty deposits in their arteries, which can lead to a buildup of plaque. This buildup of plaque can reduce the supply of oxygenated blood to the heart and increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. Diabetes can also damage the inner lining of the arteries, making them more prone to damage from fatty deposits.
Managing Your Risk of Coronary Artery Disease
The best way to reduce your risk of CAD is to prevent or manage diabetes. This can be done by eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise, and managing stress levels. If you are already diagnosed with diabetes, it is important to monitor your blood sugar levels and take any prescribed medications as directed. You should also talk to your doctor about other lifestyle changes that may reduce your risk of CAD, such as quitting smoking or losing weight.
Diabetes is a condition that increases the risk of developing coronary artery disease. The best way to reduce your risk of CAD is to prevent or manage diabetes. This can be done by eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise, and managing stress levels. Talk to your doctor about lifestyle changes that may reduce your risk of CAD, such as quitting smoking or losing weight.