A Diabetic is at a risk of developing cardiovascular disease 15 years prior to normal individuals, according to a scientist.
Gillian Booth, of the Institute of Clinical Evaluation Sciences in Toronto, said in an interview on Friday that a 40-year-old diabetic has the same chances of having a stroke or heart attack as a normal person of 55. "Diabetes confers the same risk of cardiovascular disease as aging 15 years," she said.
"People with diabetes certainly are at a high risk of getting heart disease and there is a shift toward early heart disease, so the effect is quite significant".
She added that not all diabetics are at high risk. Those of them who are, do not reach the high level till they reach their early to late 40s.
"We should be individualizing treatment (of diabetics), rather than treating them all the same," Booth said.
In a work published in 'The Lancet' medical journal, Booth and her team showed that young adults who were diabetic have 12-40 times higher rates of coronary heart disease compared to those without diabetes.
Diabetes is a chronic illness that occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin or fail to use it effectively.
Diabetes, which is associated with obesity, also affects the kidneys and the nerves. The World Health Organization estimated that the number of people worldwide with diabetes is expected to rise to 300 million by 2025.
Methods of reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease include moderate exercise, a healthy diet, cholesterol-lowering drugs, low-dose aspirin and drugs to lower blood pressure.