How to Avoid 5 Serious Diabetes Complications
A diabetes diagnosis comes with a host of worries beyond controlling blood sugar levels and watching your diet. Potential diabetes complications include heart trouble, blindness, nerve damage, foot problems and kidney failure. Experts explain what people with diabetes can do to sidestep these risks...
Even if you’re the healthiest of diabetics, you’re probably still worried about the long-term complications of the metabolic disease.
“The major concern with diabetes is that it really affects every organ in the body,” says Christopher Gibbons, MD, an associate professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School and director of the Neuropathy Clinic at Joslin Diabetes Center, a Harvard-affiliated research and clinical care center.
That includes eyes, heart, kidneys and toes – people with diabetes face higher risk of blindness, nerve damage, foot amputations from infections, cardiovascular disease and kidney failure.
But such complications aren’t inevitable, top endocrinologists say. People with diabetes can do a lot to prevent or at least delay them.
Here are the top five diabetes complications to watch for and steps you can take to avoid them.
Diabetes Complications #1: Heart Disease
People with diabetes face double the risk of having a heart attack or stroke. About 2 out of 3 die from heart disease, according to the American Diabetes Association (ADA).
That’s because diabetes affects cholesterol levels, raising levels of LDL, or bad, cholesterol and lowering HDL, or good, cholesterol. That increases a diabetic’s risk of atherosclerosis, caused when arteries are Continue reading