If you didn't know the strong link between heart disease and diabetes, you're not alone.
You need to maintain strict control of your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol to ward off problems. And that advice hasn't been emphasized enough, as Mike Boscia's experience illustrates.
- A is for A1C: You should have this blood test, short for hemoglobin A1C, at least twice a year. It can tell you your average blood glucose for the past two to three months. The target for most people is below 7%.
- B is for blood pressure: Have it checked every time you see the doctor. The target for most people with diabetes is below 130/80.
C is for cholesterol: You should have your cholesterol checked at least once a year. The targets for most people are:
- LDL (bad) cholesterol: below 100
- HDL (good) cholesterol: above 40 in men and above 50 in women
- Triglycerides (another type of fat in the blood): below 150