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Women with Diabetes Have a 40 Percent Greater Risk of Heart Disease Than Men with Diabetes

Experts aren’t sure why women with diabetes have a higher risk. Yet knowing the risk gives women the opportunity to make lifestyle changes that can make a difference. Some important steps to help take control of diabetes and decrease risk of heart disease:

  1. Check your blood pressure. The neighborhood pharmacy may have a free blood pressure machine. If your blood pressure is above 130/80, talk to your doctor.
  2. Eat foods that are low-salt and low-fat. Developing this habit can decrease your blood pressure and cholesterol.
  3. Get exercise most days of the week. It improves blood flow, lowers blood pressure and can lower cholesterol. Brisk walking is a great way to get moving.
  4. Lose weight if you are overweight. Shedding a few pounds can reduce the stress on your heart. Check with your doctor or a dietitian for a plan to get you started.
  5. Relax. Learn techniques to stay calm to help keep your blood pressure and blood sugar under control.
  6. If you smoke, quit. It’s okay to ask for help, too, and so worth it for you and your family.
  7. Take medication as prescribed. Ask your doctor if taking an aspirin would be helpful for you.
  8. See a doctor if: you notice pain or cramps in your legs or feet, are short of breath, have an elevated blood pressure (more than 130 / 80) or have a lot of swelling in your feet.

For more ways to manage diabetes and increase overall health, consider taking an informative class or joining a support group. #HeartHealth matters.

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