The stroke risk: Having diabetes means having high blood sugar. And high blood sugar damages blood vessels throughout the body, causing numerous complications, including a higher risk for stroke.
In fact, people with diabetes have a 1.5 times higher risk of having a stroke than people without the disease.
Reduce it: Getting blood sugar under control includes many of the same steps that reduce risks for stroke — such as eating a healthy diet and staying physically active.
Whether taking diabetes medication lowers stroke risk has been less clear. But one of the most recent studies on that question found a stroke risk benefit in people who tightly regulated blood sugar through a combination of lifestyle and drugs.
Findings published in the June 2015 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine revealed that those who monitored their condition closely over a 10-year period didn’t necessarily live longer than those who managed their blood sugar less stringently, but they did have fewer cardiovascular problems — including stroke.