Does Low Blood Sugar Cause High Blood Pressure in Diabetics?

It’s clear that uncontrolled diabetes can increase the risk of hypertension (high blood pressure). Even about 2 out of 3 people with diabetes experience hypertension during their life. How about with low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). Does it also have a contribution to cause high blood pressure? The answer may be ‘yes’, but not directly!

The treatment of diabetes itself is more focused to control the level of blood glucose, particularly to make sure that it doesn’t increase too high (higher than normal). In essence, the major goal of the treatment is to maintain the blood sugar levels as close to normal as possible. However there is always a chance for episodes of hypoglycemia to occur in diabetics.

Episodes of low blood sugar in diabetics

As well we know, there are two major types of diabetes; type-1 and type-2. In general, type-1 is a condition of when the pancreas is much less productive in producing hormone insulin than type-2. Even some people with type-1 have pancreas that is not able to make any insulin for blood glucose control. This is the reason of why most people with type-1 need to take insulin replacement.

high_blood _sugar_and_blood_vessels_illustrationUnfortunately, there are also pros and cons of taking insulin in diabetics.

While it can be helpful to provide adequate insulin for blood sugar control, but sometime it also can lead to hypoglycemia particularly if taken improperly. Therefore if compared with type-2, episodes of hypoglycemia is relatively more common in type-1!

What actually is your blood pressure?

It is the force or pressure that occurs between blood that flow through the blood vessels and the wall of blood vessel itself. The high pressure inside your blood vessels means that your heart needs to work harder to pump the blood around the body. This is bad for your overall health in long term.

Uncontrolled hypertension can cause damage to the blood vessel itself which then can cause some serious health conditions, such as stroke, heart failure problem, etc.

When you check the pressure inside your blood vessel, you will find 2 different numbers (such as 120 /90 mm Hg) from the result of the test.

  1. The first number is usually higher than the second number. It points to blood pressure called ‘systolic’. It describes the pressure of when your heart pumps the blood.
  2. The second number is called ‘diastolic’. It describes of when your heart relaxes or between beats of your heart.

Can low blood sugar affect blood pressure in diabetics?

Hypoglycemia in diabetics may have contribution to raise blood pressure. But hypertension in diabetics are much more common associated with hyperglycemia – as noted before!

This is reasonable since too much glucose in the blood stream can hurt the blood vessels. High blood sugar with high cholesterol can cause narrowing and hardening arteries.