Maria also has diabetes. She asked how that affects her health. Here's what the doctor said:
If you have high blood pressure and diabetes, you have an increased risk of heart and kidney problems and stroke. You also may have high blood cholesterol too.
There are two types of diabetes: noninsulin-dependent diabetes mellitus and insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. The second type is controlled by injecting insulin and following a specific eating and activity plan.
The noninsulin-dependent is the most common form and it's what Maria has. It can be controlled by increasing physical activity and following a specific meal plan. Sometimes, insulin also is needed for this type of diabetes.
To treat both her diabetes and her high blood pressure, Maria needs an eating plan that's low in salt and sodium, saturated fat, and cholesterol. It also includes eating small portions of poultry, fish, and lean meats, more fruits and vegetables, as well as lowfat or fat free dairy products and whole grain breads and cereals.