Cardiovascular Disease

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a long-term complication of type 1 diabetes (T1D). CVD includes coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, and peripheral artery disease.

Chronic high blood sugar and other risk factors can affect blood vessels, placing people with T1D at a higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

Cardiovascular disease in T1D

CVD is increasingly understood to be an important health issue for people with T1D. Risk factors that can lead to CVD include high blood sugar, high blood pressure, and kidney disease. Additionally, despite the common (mis)perception that people with T1D are lean, the T1D population lives with obesity—another CVD risk factor—at rates comparable to non-diabetic people. High blood sugar is one reason CVD is more common and occurs at an earlier age in people with T1D, but there may be other features of T1D that accelerate CVD which are yet to be discovered.

Preventing Cardiovascular Complications

Keep your blood sugar in range

Get regular physical activity

Eat a healthy diet

Maintain a healthy weight

Manage blood pressure

Manage cholesterol levels

Manage stress levels

Don’t smoke

Get enough sleep


Editor’s note: This content was created in collaboration with our partners at Beyond Type 1. Explore additional resources about cardiovascular disease on the Beyond Type 1 website.

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