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February 2009 Mayo Clinic Women's HealthSource Highlights Diabetes and Heart Disease, Going Vegetarian and Tinnitus
Date:2/4/2009

s the glycoslyated hemoglobin A1C test. This blood test, given by a physician, reflects average blood sugar control over three months. The ADA recommends maintaining the A1C level at less than 7 percent. New research has indicated that intensive measures required to get below 7 percent might not offer cardiovascular benefits. A physician can determine the best goal for the A1C level. The test is recommended at least twice a year.

Blood pressure: High blood pressure is a common partner to diabetes. For people with diabetes, an ideal reading is below 130/80 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg).

Cholesterol levels: The optimal target is less than 100 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) for low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. For high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, the recommended level is more than 50 mg/dL for women and more than 40 mg/dL for men.

A physician can help with a treatment plan to meet these guidelines. A healthy diet, regular physical activity, weight loss, smoking cessation and limited alcohol consumption all are beneficial. Medications also may be needed. For example, research has shown that most adults with high blood pressure and diabetes require multiple drug therapies to reach blood pressure goals.

The bottom line: Risks and complications from diabetes and heart disease are intertwined. People with diabetes who manage heart disease risks can help avoid life-threatening complications.

Going Vegetarian? With A Little Planning, It's Easier than Ever

ROCHESTER, Minn. --- There's more to being a vegetarian than cutting meat from the menu. The February issue of Mayo Clinic Women's HealthSource offers suggestions for a well-balanced vegetarian diet --- and some reasons why it's worth considering.

The vegetarian menu emphasizes the food that U.S. dietary guidelines say all Americans should eat regula
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