Smoking worsens diabetes complications, but quitting may help

25 Oct
2015
By Max Jones

Smoking and diabetes are dangerous when combined. The more you smoke, the greater is your chance of developing type 2 diabetes. Diabetes happens when a person does not have adequate insulin in the body, an essential substance that helps to keep the blood sugar levels low. 

People who have diabetes need to take steps to manage their blood sugar levels. Diabetics who smoke have higher blood sugar levels and far lesser control over their blood sugar levels than non-smoking diabetics.

Also Read: Complete guide to Diabetes

Diabetes causes and complications:

Most of the food a person consumes is converted into glucose. The pancreas generates a hormone called insulin, which helps the glucose to get into the cells of the body. In people with diabetes, their body does not make enough insulin or is not able to use it very well. There are different types of the condition. Type 2 is the most common type of diabetes. Fewer people develop type 1 diabetes, which is more common in young adults and children. No matter what kind of diabetes you have, smoking makes it difficult to control your ailment.

Diabetes causes and complications

Some other risks of smoking and diabetes complications are:

1. Blood circulation – Smoking has an adverse effect on circulation. It increases the blood pressure and heart rate by narrowing down the blood vessels. Smoking also causes the blood cells and the blood vessel walls to become sticky and causes the dangerous fatty material to build up. This situation can lead to stroke, heart attack and other conditions. Diabetic smokers are two to three times more likely to be sick than non-smoking diabetics.

2. Heart ailments – Smoking and diabetes increase the risk of heart diseases and when combined they exacerbate the risks of suffering a heart condition such as a stroke or a heart attack.

3. Eye conditions – People who have diabetes have a high risk of many eye diseases, including glaucoma and cataracts. When diabetes is not managed well, it can lead to diabetic retinopathy. Smoking can worsen or accelerate the development of diabetic retinopathy, which may overtime lead to blindness.

4. Respiratory issues – Smoking has an effect on the lungs and leads to health issues such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Diabetics who suffer from such diseases will have a difficult time recovering than a person who does not have diabetes.

5. Cardiovascular conditions – Smoking can lead to extensive blood vessel and heart damage. Smokers who have diabetes are more likely to die of cardiovascular conditions such as strokes and heart attacks than diabetics who do not smoke.

6. Smoking and diabetes afflicted people are also more likely to:

• Face heart problems
• Face circulation problems in different parts of their body
• Suffer from kidney conditions
• Have mobility issues
• Suffer from nerve damage
• Face fertility issues
• Suffer from gum conditions and eye problems

If you smoke and suffer from diabetes, the best thing you can do to manage your condition and to improve your overall health is to quit smoking. Smoking can be very addictive and it might not be very easy to quit the habit.

Also Read: Kick the butt: the benefits of quitting smoking

To start with, make a list of why you want to quit smoking, set a date for quitting, solicit support from your family and friends and go ahead with your plan to quit. You can join a support group for smoking and diabetes and know about the different ways many smokers have quit the habit before you. This can work very well to keep you motivated to quit smoking.

You can consult your doctor to help you with further guidelines on how best to kick the habit for good. As you stop smoking, you can feel the benefits on your overall health.

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Max Jones

A compulsive reader and a writer with a diploma in nutrition and diet. In my free time I love to explore my city while I promote pedal-biking.

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