Diabetes and high blood pressure
Updated: January 2020
Having high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, increases your risk of diabetes by 60 percent. We don’t know that the one causes the other, but there’s a clear and strong link between the two. Also, high blood pressure is often associated with obesity, which is a key risk factor for type 2 diabetes.
Twenty-five percent of people with type 1 diabetes have high blood pressure, as do 80 percent of those with type 2 diabetes. The two conditions are so closely connected that they’re referred to as comorbidities, meaning that they’re likely to be present in the same patient.
Diabetes and high blood pressure increase the risk of serious problems such as stroke, heart disease, and kidney disease, so if you have both conditions the risk is even higher. For example, you’re four times more likely to get heart disease than someone who has neither.
The statistics are sobering, yet both conditions are treatable. Both can be reduced by lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise. If you have high blood pressure and a high risk of other conditions, your doctor may prescribe medication such as diuretics, angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs), calcium channel blockers, or beta blockers.
Type 1 diabetes is treated using insulin, since if you have this condition your body is unable to make any of its own. Type 2, in which you can’t make enough, or the insulin is not fully effective, may be treatable with diet and exercise alone.
If you have hypertension and diabetes, it’s often important to measure your blood pressure at home on a regular basis. OMRON’s blood pressure monitor like M7 Intelli IT is clinically validated for use in people with Type 2 diabetes.
Bupa (2018). High blood pressure. Retrieved from www.bupa.co.uk/health-information/heart-blood-circulation/high-blood-pressure-hypertension
British Diabetic Association. Diabetes: The basic. Retrieved from www.diabetes.org.uk/diabetes-the-basics
British Diabetic Association. Diabetes and blood pressure. Retrieved from www.diabetes.org.uk/guide-to-diabetes/managing-your-diabetes/blood-pressure