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High Blood Sugar Boosts Women's Heart Disease Risk
Date:1/21/2008

Men don't seem to be as prone to problem, study finds

MONDAY, Jan. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Increased blood sugar levels signal a heightened risk of heart disease, especially among women, a new study finds.

In fact, women may face a greater risk for heart disease at lower blood sugar levels than men, according to the report in the Jan. 22 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

"The new definition of high fasting glucose, which is defined as a blood sugar between 100 and 125 milligrams per deciliter [of blood], has the same predictive value of diabetes and heart disease as the old definition of fasting glucose, which was 110 to 125 milligrams per deciliter," said lead researcher Dr. Caroline Fox, a medical officer with the Framingham Heart Study.

Moreover, for any level of blood sugar, women have a higher risk of developing diabetes and heart disease compared with men, Fox added.

In the study, Fox and her colleagues collected data on 4,058 men and women who were the children of the original participants in the Framingham Heart Study, a 50-year research project named for a Massachusetts town. During four years of follow-up, 291 people in Fox's trial developed heart disease.

The researchers found that the higher the blood sugar at the start of the study, the greater the likelihood of developing heart disease. Based on the new definition of high blood sugar, the researchers determined that women were at greater risk for developing heart disease than men.

Specifically, women whose blood sugar was at 110 to 125 milligrams per deciliter of blood had the same risk of developing heart disease as women with diabetes.

Dr. John B. Buse, president for medicine & science at the American Diabetes Association (ADA), said this study confirms what other studies have found.

"Women who don't have diabetes usually don't have heart attacks," said Buse, who
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