We live in a time where more and more people are coming into the clutches of lifestyle diseases. It may feel overwhelming to try and understand them all, as well as how each is connected to the other. The ‘blood sugar and blood pressure relationship’ is particularly intriguing. Come, let’s find out all about it.Contents:
Blood sugar refers to the amount of glucose or sugar in your blood at a given time. Blood sugar levels can be within, lower, or higher than the target range. The normal blood glucose level for a healthy individual who is fasting is less than 100 mg/dL.
A blood glucose level lower than 70 mg/dL is known as hypoglycemia and a blood glucose level above 125 mg/dL upon fasting, is known as hyperglycemia. Hyperglycemia is usually associated with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.
Blood pressure is defined as the force exerted by the flowing blood on the walls of your arteries (the blood vessels that carry blood from your heart to other parts of the body). An ideal blood pressure level is less than or equal to 120/80 mm Hg.
Thus, blood sugar and blood pressure are different parameters, though they may be connected. Let’s see how high blood pressure and diabetes are related.
In many cases, diabetes and hypertension can occur together. They are both lifestyle diseases and share a number of common risk factors and causes, including:
If you have one condition, you may be at an increased risk for developing the other. Further, if you have hypertension and diabetes, one condition may worsen the effect of the other on your body.
In diabetes, a person either does not produce enough insulin (the hormone that helps the body use or store the glucose it gets from food) or their body does not respond properly to the insulin.
In a diabetic person, glucose cannot enter the body’s cells to provide energy and it accumulates in the blood. High blood glucose levels can cause widespread damage to various tissues and organs, including those that play a key role in maintaining healthy blood pressure.
For example, diabetes damages arteries and makes them susceptible to atherosclerosis (the buildup of fats, cholesterol, and other substances in and on your artery walls). This can cause high blood pressure and lead to further complications including blood vessel damage, heart attack, and kidney failure. Thus, diabetes can contribute to hypertension.
Studies suggest that people with high blood pressure usually have insulin resistance and an increased risk of developing diabetes when compared to those with normal blood pressure. This may be due to the bodily processes that link both these conditions, including inflammation, oxidative stress, thickening of the blood vessels, and obesity.
Thus, hypertension may not cause diabetes directly, but it can increase the risk of an individual developing diabetes.
If left untreated, the combined effect of diabetes and high blood pressure may lead to serious complications, such as:
Managing blood sugar levels and blood pressure can help prevent complications.
Bringing these healthy changes to your lifestyle can help reduce the chances of developing diabetes and hypertension.
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