The Diabetes-Heart Disease Connection

(lighthearted music) – Hi, I’m Joan Lunden. Diabetes is a chronic
disease which can be managed by keeping close tabs on glucose levels. What many people don’t know is that two of the most harmful
complications of diabetes are heart disease and stroke,
both deadly conditions. Joining me now is Dr. Ann Albright, director of the CDC’s division
of diabetes translation and Dr. Valentin Fuster, the director of Mount Sinai Heart
and physician in chief of the Mount Sinai
Hospital in New York City. It’s good to have both of you here. I want to know about this connection. How does diabetes lead to heart disease. – Well the heart has three functions. The one is to pump blood. The second is to have a rhythm, so it’s an electrical
system, and the third, it needs oxygen to have
these two properties. The products of a high blood sugar affect the three properties. – Wow, so everything that keeps that heart going is all
affected by diabetes. Certain people are at
higher risk of this, right? – People with diabetes
and pre-diabetes are at higher risk for
heart attack and stroke. It turns out, women are
40% more likely than men to have heart disease
and people 65 and older, 70% are likely to die from
some form of heart disease. – For all the people out there
who are living with diabetes but not really thinking about
their heart, what do you say? – Bad news, they should
think about their heart since the number one killer in diabetes is the
heart, is heart disease. The question is what to do? You have to look at all the risk factors that lead to heart disease. Two mechanical, obesity
and high blood pressure. Two chemical, the diabetes
and high cholesterol. Two behavioral, or four or
three behavioral rather: smoking, lack of exercise,
and poor nutrition. Ann, so what’s your advice to help people kind of manage these things? – To eat healthy, to get more activity. Take your medications as prescribed and see your healthcare professionals for those important tests and exams. Really stick with it. – All right, thank you both. Such important information,
and to learn more about diabetes, visit We’ll see you next time. I’m Joan Lunden. – [Narrator] Sponsored
by NACDD with support from the Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention. Visit

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *