Who is at risk for heart disease?
Coronary heart disease or simply CAD, popularly known as heart disease causes roughly around 805,000 heart attacks each year in the USA. Do you know that every year almost 696,000 people die because of heart disease in the United States of America?
Unhealthy lifestyle habits, lack of physical exercise and early exposure to smoking and tobacco are some of the leading causes of the growing incidences of heart attacks and heart failure cases across the globe.
While there are certain risk factors such as age and hereditary disorders which cannot be treated completely, there are many others which are directly under your control.
It is important to identify and eliminate the controllable risk factors of heart disease to stay safe against serious and long-term cardiac issues that include heart failure and heart attack.
In this blog, we are going to give you an overview of 6 such risk factors which increase your chances of developing a heart disease.
1. High Blood Pressure
The most common and one of the most dangerous risk factors which can result in both heart disease as well as heart stroke is high blood pressure.
High blood pressure is commonly termed a ‘Silent Killer’ because it usually does not show any clear-cut symptoms that can be detected and prevented at an early stage. The only way to find out if you have high blood pressure is by getting it measured.
However, most people don’t measure their blood pressure until they have a doctor’s visit or suspect the presence of some other disease that affects blood pressure.
As a result, in most cases, the condition keeps on getting worse as it does not get detected at the right time finally resulting in heart disease.
The worst part is that it not only affects your heart but also interferes with the proper functioning of other vital organs such as the kidney and brain.
2. Consumption Of Foods Containing High Quantity Of ‘bad’ Cholesterol
There are two main types of cholesterols—
- Low-Density Lipoprotein Or LDL Cholesterol: LDL cholesterol is generally called “bad cholesterol” because it accelerates the production of plaque which can build up over time and cause blockages in your arteries. These blockages lead to heart disease.
- High-Density Lipoprotein Or HDL Cholesterol: High levels of HDL Cholesterol are considered to be effective in preventing the onset of heart disease. That is why it is generally called “good cholesterol.”
People who have diabetes are at a higher risk of developing heart disease.
Diabetes can occur because of two reasons—
- Your pancreas is not producing enough insulin
- The body is not able to break down and properly utilize the insulin which it produces
As a result, your body has a high amount of blood sugar levels because the abnormal insulin production is not breaking down the sugar leading to its accumulation in your blood vessels.
Ultimately sugar accumulation causes blockages in the blood vessels that deliver blood to your brain increasing the risk of stroke.
Apart from this, high blood sugar also damages the blood vessels of your heart.
4. Smoking, Tobacco Intake And Extreme Exposure To Secondhand Smoke
Research has shown that one 1 out of every 4 deaths that occur because of heart disease is due to excessive smoking.
Here is a list of ways in which smoking affects your heart health—
- Smoking increases bad cholesterol
- It makes the blood sticky increasing the chances of clot formation that ultimately blocks the blood vessels causing heart disease
- It damages the cells that are present on the lining of the blood vessels
- It makes the blood thicker and the blood vessels narrower
- It speeds up the formation of plaque (blockages formed from fat, cholesterol, etc.)
Being overweight makes you more susceptible towards developing health issues like—
- High Blood Pressure
- Type 2 Diabetes
- High LDL Cholesterol (Bad Cholesterol)
- Low HDL Cholesterol (Good Cholesterol)
It is crucial to maintain a healthy body weight and do regular exercise to prevent the risk of heart disease that occurs due to obesity.
6. Absence Of Regular Physical Activity
Being physically inactive is another major cause of heart disease. In fact, it can even cause other related risk factors like high cholesterol, obesity, high blood pressure, and in some cases even type 2 diabetes.
Regular physical activity is therefore crucial for people of all ages and genders as it keeps your cardiovascular system healthy ultimately minimizing the chances of the occurrence of heart diseases.
Heart disease is one of the most prevalent causes of death worldwide. However, certain situations have the potential to increase the possibility of its occurrence.
Likewise, diabetics, people suffering from unbalanced blood pressure, obese individuals, people who don’t get enough physical activity and people with high cholesterol intake are at a much higher risk of developing heart disease.
If you are facing any heart conditions, please get in touch with our doctors for appointments.
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