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The World Health Organization reports that the number of people with diabetes has risen from 108 million in 1980 to 422 million by 2014. And that number is estimated to reach 552 million by 2030.
One big concern for people with diabetes is the connection between diabetes and cardiovascular disease. People with diabetes are more likely to develop heart disease and are at higher risk of premature death.
"In people with diabetes, the risk of death due to heart diseases is approximately four or five times higher than in general population," explains Dr. Gosia Wamil, a cardiologist at Mayo Clinic Healthcare in London. "And this, obviously, is a major concern. There is now a strong research and scientific evidence about this link and association between cardiovascular disease and metabolic diseases, especially diabetes."
So what can be done to help patients?
Dr. Wamil explains that research has shown positive lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, losing weight, exercising more, developing a healthy diet and controlling blood pressure, can all contribute to better heart health.
"We try to develop personalized management plans, we listen to our patients and try to understand what are the steps that they can take to improve their quality of life and to improve their future life and their health, " says Dr. Wamil.
On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Wamil discusses the diabetes and heart disease connection.
Watch: Dr. Wamil discuss research on the connection between diabetes and heart disease.
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