Are You at Risk of Heart Disease?

  • 											Array
        [name] => Dr Eric Hong
        [avatar] =>
        [tiny_avatar] =>
        [address] => EH Heart Specialist Pte Ltd
    3 Mount Elizabeth
    #03-09 Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre
    Singapore 228510
    Tel: 6736 1068
        [id] => 2105
        [doctor_link] =>
        [specialization] => Cardiologist
        [specialization_id] => 31
        [specialization_link] =>
  • September 7, 2022
  • 2 minutes read

Heart disease is common, and remains one of the leading causes of death for both men and women worldwide. As with most illnesses, prevention is better than cure, and with heart diseases, it is important to be aware of risk factors that can be managed and reduced in order to keep your heart healthy and your overall wellbeing secured.

Some of the manageable risk factors of heart disease include:

Smoking – Cigarettes contain certain chemicals that cause inflammation in the blood vessels, causing them to narrow, which results in cardiovascular conditions. Total abstinence is the best way to mitigate this risk factor. Other ways to quit smoking include replacing cigarettes with nicotine patches or gum, and avoiding triggers such as places and situations where/when you normally smoke.

Poor Diet – The excessive consumption of unhealthy food, or an unbalanced diet, is a major factor leading to heart disease. For example, too much sodium in the diet can cause hypertension and damage to the arteries, which can strain the heart. A high-fat diet also leads to high levels of fat and cholesterol that can clog the arteries and prevent the heart from receiving oxygen. In general, adopting a high-fibre and low-fat diet is a good way to lower the risk of heart disease.

High Blood Pressure – If left unmanaged, hypertension can damage the arteries and make them less elastic. This results in reduced or blocked flow of oxygenated blood to the heart, thereby leading to heart disease. Leading an active lifestyle with good diet and sufficient exercise, routine check-ups with the doctor and taking maintenance medicines are some of the ways to control hypertension.

Stress – As a risk factor for heart disease, stress can generate high cortisol production and increase blood sugar, blood cholesterol, triglyceride and blood pressure levels. It also increases the formation of plaque deposits in the arteries. When stress is managed, the chances of having heart disease are also better managed.

Obesity – Individuals who are obese are more vulnerable to developing heart disease. This is due to the fact that their bodies require more blood to supply nutrients and oxygen to their bodies, which leads to an increase in blood pressure. Transporting blood also needs more pressure due to their body size. Additionally, studies reveal that obesity increases cholesterol levels and blood triglycerides, which are the main factors in heart disease.

Heart disease is serious and could potentially be life-threatening if not addressed promptly. It can develop from a host of modifiable and unmodifiable factors, the latter including age, gender and genetics. On the other hand, there are risk factors caused primarily by one’s lifestyle that can be changed and improved. Once these factors are managed, the chances of having heart disease are less. Consulting a doctor is still important, as well as having routine heart health screening.

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