How Does High Blood Sugar Damage Blood Vessels?
High blood sugar in long term may damage blood vessels, causing a number of serious complications. In fact, the two conditions are quite commonly found together. Moreover, many health problems associated with blood vessels (such as stroke, heart disease, atherosclerosis, heart attack, and coronary artery problem) are also pretty common in diabetes (a chronic health condition that closely associated with high blood sugar).
Your heart needs to pump blood around the body to keep your body survive. Every beat of your heart circulates blood high in oxygen & nutrients around the body. Then blood containing waste products from around the body flows to the kidneys for filtration.
To support the function of your heart, your body needs a mass transportation called blood vessels. They consist of 3 major types:
- Arteries – they have function to distribute blood to the muscles and organs.
- Capillaries – we need them to carry oxygen and essential nutrients to the body’s cells and gather the waste products from body’s cells. Their size is much smaller than the arteries and veins.
- And veins. For the blood that has been filtered by the kidneys, it will be carried by the veins back to the heart.
As the name implies, high blood sugar is a condition of when the blood contains high accumulation of sugar (glucose). Normally, the body is able to control and regulate the normal level of glucose in the blood.
Your body has a great, powerful guard called insulin for blood sugar control.
Insulin is made by special cells of the pancreas called ‘beta cells’. It is a kind of hormone to support the absorption of glucose in the bloods into the cells of the body. Without this hormone, the metabolism of your blood glucose is impaired.
As you age, your insulin response decreases gradually. Therefore, the risk of diabetes increases in people over 45 of the age. The progress of your insulin to reach its resistance (familiar called as insulin resistance) can get worse if you stick with a poor diet and physically inactive.
Insulin resistance is a condition of when insulin doesn’t work effectively or when the amount of insulin produced by the pancreas doesn’t meet to the body needs. It is often found in diabetes. If you have insulin resistance, your body loses its ability to maintain the normal level of glucose in the bloodstream so your blood sugar level is easy to rise.
However, you don’t have to have diabetes to experience high blood sugar. For instance, eating large meals (particularly for large carbohydrates and low in fiber) at once also can cause a spike in blood sugar level.
The exact way of how high blood sugar can damage blood vessels probably is not fully known yet.
High level of blood sugar would result more pressure against the blood vessel walls. It’s often associated with hypertension (high blood pressure) and also probably atherosclerosis. If left untreated, it would take a serious toll on the health of your cardiovascular system. What’s more?