Diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol all increase your risk of having another heart attack. It’s important to check for these conditions regularly and manage them if you have them.
Diabetes is a condition that affects the way body cells take up and use glucose from the blood, which means you have a higher risk of heart attack or stroke.
Ask your doctor about screening for diabetes. If you have diabetes, work with your doctor to manage it and use the diabetes action plan to set goals.
There are two main types of diabetes:
People with cardiovascular disease often have type 2 diabetes. This makes up 90% of diabetes cases.
Diabetes is on the rise. The best way to manage diabetes is to be physically active, eat a healthy diet and achieve and maintain a healthy weight. Talk to your doctor about screening for diabetes.
Manage your diabetes long term. Ask your doctor to check your blood glucose levels with a regular HbA1c (glycosylated haemoglobin) blood test. This shows your average blood glucose levels over the past 10 to 12 weeks.
Generally, aim for an HbA1c level of less than or equal to 7%. These goals can vary for different people. Find out from your doctor or accredited diabetes educator what your blood glucose and HbA1c goals should be.
Keep a record of your blood glucose levels. This will help you and your doctor to best manage your diabetes together.
Work with your doctor to make a plan for managing diabetes.
Your doctor will advise lifestyle changes like being physically active, eating healthy foods and staying at a healthy weight.
You should also:
If you need help, call Diabetes Australia on 1300 136 588. They can give you information and advice to help you manage diabetes.
Blood pressure is the pressure of your blood on the walls of your arteries as your heart pumps it around your body. Having high blood pressure over a long time can cause heart problems.
Blood pressure is the pressure of your blood on the walls of your arteries as your heart pumps it around your body.
Aim to have a target blood pressure of less than 130/80. Talk with your doctor about what your blood pressure level should be.
If you have coronary heart disease, blood pressure–lowering medicine is a common way to reach a good blood pressure level.
Your blood pressure may be different at home to what it is in the hospital or at the doctor’s. Home measurements can give more information and help your doctor decide about treatment.
Your doctor may show you how to measure your blood pressure yourself and ask you to bring the results to your next appointments. They may ask you to wear a special monitor that records your blood pressure over 24 hours.
Even if you take a blood pressure–lowering medicine, you still need to change your lifestyle for better blood pressure and health.
Ways to lower your blood pressure include:
Too much cholesterol in the blood over time can cause a heart attack or stroke.
Work with your doctor and use this action plan to manage high cholesterol.
Cholesterol is a fatty substance that your body produces naturally and is carried around in your blood.
It is generally better if you have lower LDL (‘bad’) cholesterol and triglycerides, and higher HDL (‘good’) cholesterol. This is especially true if you have coronary heart disease or are at risk of getting cardiovascular disease.
If you have coronary heart disease, we generally recommend:
Use the cholesterol and triglycerides action plan to manage your cholesterol levels.
Talk with your doctor about what your cholesterol and triglycerides should be.
Keep your cholesterol low
Managing diabetes is easier when you have a plan. Use this action plan designed for heart attack survivors to help you.
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