Atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality for individuals with diabetes and the largest contributor of direct and indirect cost of diabetes. ASCVD is defined as coronary heart disease, stroke, and peripheral arterial disease (PAD).
It is very important for people who have diabetes to make heart-healthy food choices because of their increased risk for cardiovascular complications. When compared to people without diabetes, people with diabetes have:
- Twice the risk of developing cardiovascular disease
- Twice the risk of having a heart attack
- A greater chance of having a second heart attack
- A greater chance of dying from a heart attack
- Four times the risk of having a stroke
Women with diabetes are particularly susceptible to these complications, and have a greater risk of death from heart attacks and strokes than men with diabetes