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Diabetics: Good values for blood sugar, blood pressure and blood lipids reduce the risk of heart attack
Diabetes not only has a serious impact on metabolism, it can also lead to numerous secondary diseases. Among other things, diabetics have an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases and premature death. A study has now shown how this risk can be reduced.
Consequences of diabetes
According to health experts, around seven million people with diabetes live in Germany. The disease can lead to numerous secondary diseases. The so-called diabetes often causes diseases of the cardiovascular system over time. In addition, the risk of premature death among diabetics is higher than that of the general population. However, if diabetes patients keep blood pressure, fat, blood sugar, and kidney levels in the target area and don't smoke, their life expectancy will be almost the same as that of people without diabetes. In addition, the risk of heart attack or stroke is then similar. That is the result of a new study.
Increased risk of death
More and more people are getting diabetes. This has dramatic consequences: According to a study by an international team of researchers, the life expectancy of the disease is reduced by nine years.
Around every fifth death in Germany is associated with diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes can also lead to many comorbidities and complications and consequently increase the risk of death. For example, people with cardiovascular disease suffer up to four times more often.
"However, type 2 diabetes does not necessarily mean that you die prematurely and have to deal with a number of complications," emphasizes the President of the German Diabetes Association (DDG), Professor Dr. med. Dirk Müller-Wieland, in a message.
Keep values in the target area
A cohort study based on data from the Diabetes Register in Sweden has now shown that diabetes patients who keep blood pressure, blood fat, blood sugar and kidney values in the target area and do not smoke have a life expectancy that is at almost the same level as in people without Diabetes lies.
The risk of heart attack or stroke is then similar.
"This representative study from Sweden shows very clearly that you can live well and long with a chronic illness if you have it under control and meet your requirements," says Müller-Wieland.
Here doctors and patients should strictly pursue the therapy goals. However, the framework conditions, such as a healthy living environment, should also be created personally and socially.
Focus on the five classic risk factors
The aim of the study published in the "New England Journal of Medicine" was to find a way to reduce or even eliminate the increased risk for people with type 2 diabetes for cardiovascular diseases and early death.
For this purpose, the authors evaluated the data of 271,174 people with type 2 diabetes from the Swedish National Diabetes Register over more than five years and compared them with a control group of 1,355,870 patients without diabetes.
In their study, they focused on the five classic risk factors that are known to lead to cardiovascular risks and premature death in type 2 diabetes: increased blood sugar, blood fat and blood pressure values as well as poor kidney values and smoking.
The researchers came to the conclusion that people with type 2 diabetes who kept all values in the target range had an almost identical risk of death and an approximately the same cardiovascular risk as the control group.
Healthy lifestyle is crucial for treatment
"With each additional of the five examined values that were in the target area, the risk of serious secondary diseases and premature death was reduced," explains Müller-Wieland.
"It is interesting that a permanently elevated blood sugar level was the highest risk factor for stroke and heart attack," comments Professor Dr. Baptist Gallwitz, past president and press spokesman for the DDG.
"This study shows once again that a healthy lifestyle is crucial for the successful treatment of type 2 diabetes," said Professor Dr. Monika Kellerer, Vice President of the DDG.
In order to keep the five values constant in the target area for patients, it is not only important to have training and the willingness of the patient to actively participate in therapeutic measures. Studies show that the appeal to the individual is not enough.
"We need a rethinking in society that makes it easier for those affected by an overall healthier environment to achieve their therapy goals," said Barbara Bitzer, Managing Director of DDG.
"In addition, population-wide measures must be taken to prevent more and more people from developing type 2 diabetes," says the expert.
Health-enhancing tax adjustments
The DDG considers health-promoting tax adjustments such as "Healthy Value Added Tax" and "Sugar Tax" to be the most effective measures.
In some countries there is already a sugar tax. However, the majority of Germans reject this, as a survey showed.
The Food, Enjoyment and Catering Union (NGG) also spoke out against a fat and sugar tax.
The World Health Organization (WHO), on the other hand, has called for special taxes on sugary drinks to help combat obesity, among other things. According to experts, such soft drinks are often the cause of obesity.
The DDG also advocates a ban on food advertising aimed at children. In addition, binding standards for catering in day-care centers and schools as well as a daily mandatory hour of school spot / movement should be established. (ad)