Posted in Health by inMotion Life
Heart disease affects a large percentage of the world’s population. In fact, a person dies from heart disease every 34 seconds in the United States alone! This is a very real health concern, so you would naturally want to know what you can do to prevent heart disease, right?
However, before we tell you what steps you can take in the prevention of heart disease, let’s take a look at what heart disease actually is. Heart disease consists of a number of problems affecting the blood vessels in the heart and throughout the body. There are a number of different types of heart diseases as highlighted below.
Coronary Artery Disease
Coronary artery disease, which is also known as CAD, is the most common form of heart disease, which leads to heart attacks. CAD occurs when the arteries become hard and narrow. This makes it difficult for the blood to flow properly, leaving the heart without the correct amounts of blood it needs to function correctly.
CAD leads to angina, which is pain in the chest. It can feel like a squeezing pain in your chest and sometimes in your arms, neck, jaw, and back. Some people say it also feels like indigestion. Angina is not a heart attack, yet it can be a sign of a future heart attack, and should serve as a warning.
A heart attack is another form of CAD. This occurs when the arteries are either completely blocked or severely damaged.
Heart failure occurs when the heart is unable to pump the blood through the body, rendering the primary organs without sufficient amounts of blood and oxygen. Signs of heart failure are shortness of breath or feeling like you can’t get enough air, swelling in the legs, ankles, and feet, and extreme tiredness or fatigue.
Heart arrhythmia is when the heartbeat changes. People suffering from this complain of dizziness, feeling faint, out of breath, and as having chest pains. In some cases, the irregular heartbeat is harmless, yet in others, surgery is required to install a pacemaker.
The odds of developing heart disease increases with age, and both men and women have heart attacks. Yet women die more frequently from them than men do. In fact one in four women in the United States die of heart disease. In 2004, nearly 60 more women died of cardiovascular disease than all forms of cancer combined!
Steps you can take to Prevent Heart Disease
- To help prevent heart diseases, know your blood pressure. People with high blood pressure do not always show signs of high blood pressure, so it is advisable to have your blood pressure checked every 1 to 2 years.
- Avoid smoking, as this is one of the leading contributors to heart disease.
- Get tested for diabetes. People with diabetes have increased risks of heart disease and other serious health problems.
- Have your cholesterol levels checked. High cholesterol clogs the arteries, keeping your heart from getting the blood it needs. This leads to heart attacks.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight increases your risks of heart disease.
- Limit your alcohol consumption to one drink a day, with no more than a 12-ounce beer or a 5-ounce glass of wine.
- Find healthy ways to deal with stress. Stress is a silent contributor to heart disease.
- Add exercise and a healthy diet to your lifestyle to improve your quality of life and reduce the risks of heart disease.
Changing your current lifestyle and habits can help reduce the risks of heart disease, and the earlier you begin, the better. So what are you waiting for? Head over to our recipes section and browse our healthy food recipes, and watch some of our exercise videos, so you can get to work on your fitness plan… 🙂
Do you have any additional tips for preventing heart disease, or do you suffer from any kind of heart disease yourself? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.