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If you have diabetes then your chance of having a heart attack, (or getting another if you've already had one), is much higher than average.  There is no such thing as a "wee touch" of diabetes.  If you have it at all you have a much higher risk of having a heart attack. 

But the good news is you can lower your chance of having a heart attack, or not having another if you have already had one, by making sure your blood sugar level is kept as stable as possible.  You should take your tablets and injections exactly as your doctor or nurse has told you. 

Because your chances of having a heart attack are higher, as well as eating a healthy diet and getting plenty of exercise – you should be sure that you don't smoke, if you have high blood pressure try hard to get it down to a safe level (see "high blood pressure" in this section) and make sure your cholesterol is less than 5 (see "high cholesterol" in this section for tips on how to do this).

Try to eat less fat (see "high cholesterol" in this section for tips on how to do this).  Eat lots of fruit and vegetables.  Avoid sugary foods – don't drink too much alcohol!

If you are overweight then losing some weight can help to keep your blood sugar levels down.  Try to lose half to one lb (0.5kg) a week, this may not seem like alot, but over a few weeks it will mount up.  Getting more active also helps you to lose weight.

All of these pointers give you a bigger benefit than people who are not diabetic, so go for it.

In Summary;

  • Maintain a stable blood sugar level
  • Take your tablets and injections exactly as your doctor/nurse has told you
  • Eat healthily and get plenty of exercise
  • If you smoke - stop
  • Maintain a safe blood pressure level
  • Maintain a cholesterol level of less than 5
  • Eat less fatty foods and more fruit and vegetables
  • Avoid sugary foods
  • Cut down on alcohol intake
  • If overweight, try to lose some weight

Ask your GP or practice nurse (or your liaison nurse if you are attending hospital) for more advice.

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