Did you know that the walls of your arteries are greatly affected by inflammation? It may not be
cholesterol or plaque that leads to heart disease. Especially for lupus patients, inflammation is the
Number One cause of heart disease.
Why does this particularly matter? Dr. Mankad explains that it matters because we have an
inflammatory condition. We already have an underlying level of inflammation by virtue of having lupus.
Add on top of that the use of steroids, which brings its own risk of cardiovascular disease, and you’ve
got a concern.
Fact: people with systemic lupus are 9-50 times MORE AT RISK than the general population of having a
myocardial infarction. And, they have a high cardiovascular mortality. Lupus is now considered to be an
independent risk factor for the development of atherosclerosis. Viewing atherosclerosis as an
inflammatory disease, this association becomes stronger and better understood.
See: Cardiovascular Disease in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: The Role of Traditional and Lupus Related Risk Factors:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2779351/ (second paragraph of the Introduction).
Here is another reference saying that inflammation is linked to atherosclerosis (hardening of the
arteries), a cause of heart disease and stroke. And that fat tissues also increase insulin resistance,
leading to type 2 diabetes. See: “The G.I Diet” by Gallop (p. 135).