When you have extra cholesterol in your blood, it builds up inside the walls of your heart's arteries (blood vessels). This buildup is called plaque. It narrows your arteries and reduces or stops blood flow. This can lead to heart attack, stroke, or other serious heart disease.
Most people with diabetes are prescribed a medicine to reduce their LDL cholesterol levels. A group of medicines called statins are almost always used. You should learn how to take your statin medicine and how to watch for side effects.
Doctors used to set a target LDL cholesterol level of between 70 and 100 mg/dL for people with diabetes. Now, there is no specific target number.
If you have other risk factors for heart disease or stroke, your provider may prescribe higher doses of a statin drug.
Your doctor should check your cholesterol levels at least once a year.
Eat foods that are low in fat and learn how to shop for and cook foods that are healthy for your heart.
Get plenty of exercise, as well. Talk with your doctor about what kinds of exercises are right for you.