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Checking blood pressure

Diabetes is a disease that occurs when blood glucose, also called blood sugar, is too high. High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is common in people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. High blood pressure affects a person with diabetes twice as often as a person without diabetes. According to the American Diabetes Association, the combination of high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes is especially dangerous and can greatly increase the risk of having a heart attack or stroke.

It is important that people with diabetes keep their blood pressure under control. The following are some facts on diabetes and blood pressure:

  • Nearly three in four people with diabetes have high blood pressure.
  • Two out of three people with diabetes die of heart disease or a stroke.
  • People with diabetes are two to four times more likely to have heart disease or a stroke than those who do not have diabetes are.
  • Smoking doubles the risk of heart disease in people with diabetes.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), up to 20% of deaths from heart attack and 13% of deaths from a stroke are related to diabetes or prediabetes.

Reduce The Risk For Heart Disease

To reduce their risk of heart disease, people should maintain a healthy weight, make healthy food choices, stay active, and quit smoking. Also, it is important to know and talk with a health care team about how to manage the ABCs of diabetes; A1C, blood pressure, and cholesterol. This will help lower the chances of having a heart attack, stroke, or other diabetes problems.

  • When self-monitoring, check blood sugar levels regularly. For those that don’t know how to properly check their levels, ask a healthcare provider for help.
  • Always remember to examine your feet and skin daily.
  • Weigh and check your blood pressure regularly. Write down both numbers to keep track. Use the chart below as a guide.

 

Used with permission by UIC - Midwest Latino Health Research, Training, and Policy Center
Blood Pressure CategoryRangesSystolic (mm/Hg) - Top NumberDiastolic (mm/Hg) - Bottom Number
Normal blood pressureAt or below 120/80 (mm/Hg)120 (mm/Hg)80 (mm/Hg)
Controlled blood pressure for persons with diabetesLess than 140/90 (mm/Hg)140 (mm/Hg)90 (mm/Hg)
Hypertension140/90 (mm/Hg) or more140 (mm/Hg)90 (mm/Hg)
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