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Politics, Life and Journalism in Northumberland County, Ontario

Heart disease and diabetes talk points out relationship

First published: April 12, 2005

The links between heart disease and diabetes will be discussed at a special speaker series organized by a Cobourg pharmacy Tuesday night.

Dr. Michael Bayer will talk about the relationship between the two illnesses at the Lion’s Centre on Elgin Street starting at 7:30 p.m.
The Canadian Diabetes Association says the country spends $9 billion in direct and indirect costs to treat people with diabetes and its health complications, a figure that can be reduced, says Christine Smilie, the national associate director of public policy and government relations in a recent press release.

Currently, a person with diabetes incurs medical costs that are two to five times higher than a person without diabetes. It costs between $2,000 to $5,000 each year for people to manage diabetes. For those without an employee benefit program, that can be difficult, she said.

People with diabetes are more likely to later develop serious complications such as heart disease, kidney disease, blindness and limb amputations.

Diabetes can be easily controlled or prevented through exercise and proper diet. Being overweight can put pressure on the body’s ability to properly control blood glucose. Weight reduction can reduce amount of medications need to take to keep blood sugar in healthy range

More than two million Canadians have diabetes and this number is expected to increase dramatically as the population ages. Risk factors include being over the age of 45, being overweight and being related to a person with diabetes.

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