Ask the Diabetes Educator Archive

Q:

How does smoking affect diabetes?

A:

Smoking affects everyone but people with diabetes are at greater risk for complications then those without diabetes. What are these risks? Other than the lung cancer that most people think of first, cardiovascular complications can occur. Smoking depletes the body of important nutrients and can deposit chemicals in the tissue. Vitamin C is one of the nutrients that suffers; it is a key player in the body's antioxidant system and protector of the immune system. Chemicals that deposit in the tissue can lead to toxic buildup -- all a setup for chronic complications. It is far easier said than done to "Quit smoking!", but getting serious about seeking a way to break the addiction is even more important for those with diabetes.

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