The two most common medical phenomenon today is Diabetes and High Blood Pressure and it is of no surprise that there’s such a significant relationship between the two diseases. About 80% of people with Type 2 Diabetes have high blood pressure and patients with hypertension also often show evidence of insulin resistance.

The combination of high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes is particularly lethal and can significantly raise your risk of having a heart attack, stroke, and other diseases. In this article understand the link between Diabetes and High Blood Pressure and know how it can be prevented.


Link Between Diabetes and High Blood Pressure

  1.     Refined Sugar and High Carbohydrate Consumption

There would be no Diabetes on this planet if the refined white sugar that is used in most of the foods you consume today, wasn’t well established. Consuming sugar from processed foods such as cakes, cookies, cereals, etc. immediately causes a spike in glucose/blood sugar levels. In response, insulin is released to stabilize glucose levels, and eventually, a   diet that is rich in refined sugar or carbohydrates leads to insulin resistance.

As a result of insulin problems, the glucose is unable to enter the cells and it accumulates in the bloodstream instead. This can cause widespread damage including to the blood vessels and kidneys and lead to a rise in blood pressure, increasing the risk of further harm and complications.

  1.     Inflammation

Both diabetes and high blood pressure are considered to be chronic inflammatory diseases. Studies show that inflammatory markers in the form of C – reactive protein or CRP numbers are increased in patients with hypertension and diabetes.

The immune system is weakened due to the chronic inflammatory response and plagues keep forming like bandages to heal the damage. If the inflammation continues, the plaques break down and move through the system, causing bigger trouble. Researchers state that It “isn’t just sludge caking up on the vessel walls,” there is an inflammatory response” that makes plaques susceptible to rupturing as well where more organs can get damaged.

  1.     Oxidative Stress

The accumulation of free radicals in the body is bad news for the liver. The liver is burdened as it is the primary detox organ that scavenges on the free radicals and disposes of it out of the body. As and when it is exposed to too much toxins, and there are no anti-oxidants to suppress it, it can lead to oxidative stress within the cells. Oxidative stress causes healthy cells of the body to lose their function and structure by attacking them.

Studies have stated that oxidative stress has a negative regulation on insulin signaling, interpreting them to develop insulin resistance which is a contributing factor to both the conditions of diabetes and hypertension.

  1.     Obesity

Obesity is generally considered as a metabolic disorder and identified as the most important risk factor for hypertension and diabetes. Even though your genetic predisposition has a large effect on determining whether you are obese, other imbalances can also lead to obesity.

Obesity has a direct effect on the secretion of the insulin hormone and fat stores that are stored as a result of excess glucose. This, in turn, increases your risk for several health complications.

  1.     Mental Stress

Compared with physical stressors, modern stressors arising from psychological threats (eg, work stress, domestic violence, and natural disasters) are more sustained. Chronic mental stress, resulting from the modern lifestyle, is frequently associated with physiologic and psychological disturbances, and may indirectly lead to diabetes and hypertension.

This occurs due to the stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system that can elevate pulse rate, cardiac minute output, impaired glucose, and lipid metabolism. The hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis is another key mechanism linking obesity, hypertension, and chronic stress. Therefore, people should reduce stress to escape from the vicious cycle of mental stress, obesity, diabetes, and hypertension.

  1.     No Physical Activity

Lack of physical movement and a sedentary lifestyle further exacerbates the risk.  Physical activity helps to utilize fat glucose and glycogen stores that are deposited in the muscle tissues. This will help to regulate glucose levels in the blood and stabilize insulin levels as well.

Physical activity that is done regularly also helps to improve blood flow and promote circulation leading to normal blood pressure levels. Especially high-intensity exercise like that of Interval training is very beneficial to improve oxygenation and strengthen the heart muscles. Rebounding exercise is another technique to improve lymphatic drainage and circulation across the body. You cannot conquer diabetes or high blood pressure without exercising.

  1.     Improper Salt Intake

Taking salt in the right form not just regulates blood pressure by stabilizing sodium levels, it also helps to preserve water in the body that is an important precursor for the secretion of insulin. Consuming salt in its whole form along with its balance of essential minerals is important.

As opposed to table salt that simply consists of sodium chloride, it is recommended to consume sea salt, Himalayan salt or Celtic salt that provides sodium in its balanced form, along with other key minerals.

Sodium is an essential electrolyte that is needed by the body to regulate pressure and refraining from salt altogether is not recommended. Avoid table salt and high sodium foods as it can get your blood pressure up quickly.

  1.     Sleep

The power hours between 9.00 pm to 2.00 am is the time when your batteries are recharging and healing intensifies in the body and the brain refreshes itself. Conquering any disease is impossible if you don’t have a healthy sleeping routine.

A Case Study

Mr. John, a man in his sixties has suffered from diabetes, high blood pressure, and was a little overweight. For the past 10 years, he had to battle these conditions without any respite. He was on medication for blood pressure, 90 units of long and short-acting insulin shots for diabetes, a cholesterol-lowering medication, and blood-thinning drugs.

After trying a lot of things and spending a lot on medications, He was advised to supplement with simple lifestyle coping strategies including walking barefoot on grass, rebounding for every 1 minute each hour (it stimulates the lymphatic nodes and improves blood circulation). He was put on a diet that had high amounts of fiber from vegetables, moderate amounts of protein including legumes, nuts and seeds, healthy fats, low GI, and low-carb food.

Mr. John followed this routine for about 4 weeks and felt rejuvenated. He was able to lower his insulin medication from 90 units to just 10 units and was able to come off all his medications within a span of 3 months.

Both diabetes and high blood pressure are lifestyle diseases and closely intertwined. Wise and healthy choices can make a dramatic difference to help you stay away from these diseases. It’s not genetics, it’s your lifestyle that determines whether you stay healthy or not.