Harvard Heart Letter

Heart Disease and Diabetes

Three calculators are available to help individuals with diabetes gauge their odds of having a heart attack over the next ten years:

  • The Framingham risk calculator is an all-purpose tool for people with and without diabetes.

  • The United Kingdom Prospective Diabetes Study has developed a cardiovascular risk calculator specifically for people with diabetes. Created for doctors and researchers, it must be downloaded and installed.

  • After entering as much information as possible about your health (height, weight, cholesterol levels, blood pressure readings, last dilated eye exam, current medications, A1c number, etc.) the American Diabetes Association's Diabetes PHD estimates your current risk for diabetes, heart attack, stroke, and kidney failure, as well as foot and eye complications. By changing variables in the program, like stopping smoking, taking an ACE inhibitor, etc., you can see how making these changes would affect your future health.

The American Diabetes Association's "Nutrition Recommendations and Interventions for Diabetes" were published in the journal Diabetes Care in January 2007 as one of the organization's clinical practice recommendations.

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