type 2 diabetes continues to increase. It is projected that between the years 2000 to 2030, the number of people with diabetes will more than double. Similarly, the number of adults with hypertension is predicted to increase by nearly 60 percent. Hypertension is a very common condition in diabetics, but how does diabetes cause hypertension, and what can you do to help prevent or manage it?
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is generally considered blood pressure that's higher than 140/90 mmHg. A normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHG for people without diabetes, and 130/80 mmHG for diabetics. There are often no symptoms of hypertension - thus it's important to get your blood pressure checked regularly, or purchase a home monitoring kit so that you can test it yourself at your convenience. Continued high blood pressure puts you at higher risk for additional complications including heart disease, stroke, and kidney disease. Being both diabetic and hypertensive can put you at even greater risk.
Hypertension occurs because of a narrowing in the arteries. In diabetics, this can be caused by continued and consistently high blood glucose levels (a good reason to keep blood sugar levels under control). When the blood flow is restricted, the blood pressure increases.
Diabetics can reduce their risk of developing hypertension -- and thus, additional complications due to hypertension -- by eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise, maintaining a healthy body weight, and regularly monitoring their blood glucose levels and keeping them under control. Get your blood pressure checked regularly. Early treatment can help to get your blood pressure down to healthy levels.