Diabetes, heart problems and kidney disease are closely linked

UC expert discusses prevention in New York Times article

Heart disease, diabetes and kidney disease, among the most common chronic illnesses in the United States, are all closely connected.

People with diabetes are twice as likely to have heart disease or a stroke and are at risk of developing kidney disease, while heart disease is more likely for those with kidney problems as the heart works harder to pump blood to the kidneys.

The New York Times reports people should pay attention to shared risk factors for these illnesses, including excess body fat, uncontrolled blood sugar, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

The University of Cincinnati's Estrelita Dixon, MD, commented in the New York Times article on the importance of prevention.

Preventive measures can include adding more fiber, fruit and vegetables to your diet to regulate blood sugar and lower blood pressure and increasing muscle mass through strength training to help with insulin resistance. Just moving in general can be beneficial, and experts recommend aiming for 150 minutes of exercise each week, but Dixon noted gradual steps can still make a difference.

“Don’t think in terms of all or nothing,” said Dixon, division chief and associate professor in the Department of Internal Medicine in UC's College of Medicine.

Read the New York Times story. (Note: Subscription may be required to access full article.)

Featured image at top of diabetes testing supplies. Photo/David Moruzzi/Unsplash.

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