Those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes are up to five times more likely to develop heart disease or stroke. The increased likelihood of diabetics for developing heart disease is related to the connection between obesity and diabetes. The best way to beat the odds and reduce your risk of heart disease or stroke is to regularly exercise.

Consistently, studies have illustrated the connection between physical activity and cardiovascular disease. Those who exercise have a significantly lower chance of developing cardiovascular diseases. Medical News Today discusses a 2007 study from the National Institutes of Health that found moderate activity levels (30 minutes on most days of the week) led to a 27% overall decreased mortality risk. Vigorous exercise (at least 20 minutes three times a week) was associated with a 32% overall decreased mortality risk.

These findings suggest that more vigorous exercise for a shorter amount of time has larger benefits in the reduction of mortality risk associated with cardiovascular disease than more frequent, moderate levels of activity. Regular physical activity, alongside diet, forms the foundation of type 2 diabetes treatment.

New Evidence

Some of the most drastic and worrisome statistics come from a follow-up study published in 2013 in the European Journal of Preventative Cardiology, also reported in Medical News Today. The research illustrates that those with low activity levels had a 25% greater risk of health events related to cardiovascular disease. More worrisome however, is that they also had a 70% greater risk of fatal cardiovascular events.

While 25% may not seem that high, the 70% greater risk that the event will be fatal is motivation for change. There will always be some risk of developing a cardiovascular disease. But, if we do our part, then the chance that any disease or health problem will lead to death drastically decreases.

As with most medical-related issues, individuals and their needs vary widely. Before starting an exercise program or making other drastic lifestyle changes, it would be wise to consult with a medical professional about what is best for you, specifically and individually.

To learn more about this topic:

How Morning Exercise Benefits Diabetes
Basic Guidelines for Aerobic Exercise
Tip of the Week: Exercise is Your Best Friend