Prevention of heart diseases: Lifestyle, diet and medications

 Prevention of heart diseases: Lifestyle, diet and medications

Prevention of heart diseases: Lifestyle, diet and medications


There is good and bad news about heart disease - so let's take a break from the bad news first. It is the leading cause of death in the United States for both men and women, and leads to one in four deaths annually. And although heart disease usually develops only after the age of 65, recent studies show that heart attacks have become more frequent in young people, especially women. The good news According to the American Heart Association, 80% of cases of heart problems are preventable - which means that the health of your heart is often in your hands. If you want to live a longer and healthier life, let's talk about how to do it.


Let's take our time, and instead start with a brief overview. The first thing you should know, heart disease is not just one disease. This is a generalizing term for a group of conditions that can harm the heart. The most common type of heart disease is coronary heart disease, or CHD for short. (You may also hear that in your paper this is called coronary heart disease.)


CHD develops when the arteries of your heart harden and narrow due to the accumulation of cholesterol, fat and other substances (called plaques) on the walls of the arteries. Plaque blocks blood flow, preventing your heart from receiving all the life-giving oxygen it needs to function properly.


Other types of heart disease include:


  • High blood pressure, also known as hypertension (HBP), which causes your heart to work harder, increasing the risk of heart failure and stroke.

  • A heart attack that occurs when a blockage blocks blood flow to the heart, depriving your most important muscles of oxygen and other nutrients.

  • Heart failure, also known as congestive heart failure, in which the heart gradually loses the ability to cope with the body's need for oxygen-rich blood.

  • Disorders of the heart valves that affect those parts of the heart that help regulate blood flow.

  • Arrhythmia, another generalizing term for various cardiac arrhythmias (such as atrial fibrillation) that disrupt the heart's ability to beat properly, causing the pulse to beat too fast, too slow, or irregularly.

  • Stroke, which is technically not a type of heart disease, but is a common consequence of cardiovascular problems. When blood vessels become clogged or when a blood clot enters the heart and enters the brain, the result is a sudden cessation of blood and oxygen supply to the brain.


Find out all the details about heart diseases

What causes Heart Disease

Heart disease has many causes and risk factors. Sometimes there's nothing you can do about it. They include:

  • Your age. It's just a fact of life that the older you get, the higher the risk that something will go wrong with the indicator.

  • Your genetics . You inherit genes from your parents that can increase the likelihood of heart disease.

  • Your biological gender. The age of estrogen, which women produce in larger quantities than men, may provide some protection against heart disease - at least until menopause, when estrogen levels drop.


But let this knowledge encourage you to be more vigilant about managing risk factors that you can control, such as whether you smoke cigarettes or e-cigarettes, how well you eat and sleep, and whether you move enough. Also keep in mind that eliminating one risk factor can also help you deal with one or more at the same time. For example, if you exercise regularly, you will strengthen your heart, and you can also lose some weight, which has its own benefits for heart health (we'll talk about this later).


Is heart disease really preventable

In most cases, yes! (Isn't it convenient to study?)) Only the above factors cannot be completely controlled. This means that you get the deciding vote when it comes to the overall well-being of your company.


And even if you have a predisposition to a certain type of heart disease and its complications, there are often things you can do to stop its progression or even reverse the course of the disease after diagnosis.


The first step towards prevention is to consult a doctor and find out the condition of your heart. At the moment, you may be at risk of heart disease and not know about it. Why this happens is because, although we would all like bad things to happen inside the body that will declare themselves with loud bells and whistles (or maybe just indisputable physical evidence), some common health problems that can damage your heart may not have any symptoms at all. Here are some heart-damaging conditions that your doctor will pay attention to: # # is it really possible to prevent heart disease


In most cases, yes! (Isn't it convenient to study?)) Only the above factors cannot be completely controlled. This means that you get the deciding vote when it comes to the overall well-being of your company.


And even if you have a predisposition to a certain type of heart disease and its complications, there are often things you can do to stop its progression or even reverse the course of the disease after diagnosis.


The first step towards prevention is to consult a doctor and find out the condition of your heart. At the moment, you may be at risk of heart disease and not know about it. Why this happens is because, although we would all like bad things to happen inside the body that will declare themselves with loud bells and whistles (or maybe just indisputable physical evidence), some common health problems that can damage your heart may not have any symptoms at all. Here are some heart-damaging conditions that your doctor will pay attention to:


High Blood Pressure

Hypertension is one of those insidious conditions that do not make themselves felt. Often called the "silent killer," HBP provides no external evidence because it damages your heart and blood vessels, making you more susceptible to stroke, heart attack, and heart failure.


If you haven't done this recently, take a blood pressure test. According to the American Stroke Association, normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg or less. Hypertension is a systolic pressure of 130 or higher, or a diastolic pressure of 80 or higher, which remains elevated over time. It should be noted that your blood pressure is considered "high", which is the first signal that systolic blood pressure may be a problem that you will have to deal with when your systolic blood pressure reaches 129 (even if diastolic pressure is still safe at 80 or below).


If you have HBP, there's a lot you can do to get it under control before it does real damage to your bar. This includes:


  • Weight Loss
  • Regular exercise
  • Healthy diet


However, lifestyle adjustments alone may not be enough. Your doctor may advise you to take medications to lower your blood pressure. These drugs include:


  • Diuretics
  • Beta blockers
  • ACE inhibitors


High Cholesterol

The same goes for unhealthy cholesterol levels. You won't know you have it until you pass the test. There are two types: "good" and "harmful" LDL cholesterol. If you have too many low-density lipoproteins and not enough high-density lipoproteins, then you are more at risk of heart disease, because unhealthy cholesterol contributes to atherosclerosis, plaque accumulation, which leads to coronary heart disease.


Diet and exercise can help you better control your cholesterol levels, but your doctor may decide that you also need medications to keep it under control. These include:


  • Statins
  • Eztimibe
  • Resins binding bile acids
  • PCSK9 Inhibitors


Diabetes


Another important information about the risk of heart disease: high blood sugar, also known as blood glucose. High blood sugar is a sign of type 2 diabetes, which not only increases the likelihood of HBP and high cholesterol, but also puts you right in the epicenter of heart disease.


Why this happens is because too much sugar in the blood damages the blood vessels, as well as the nerves that control them, and your heart. People with diabetes have a four-fold higher risk of death from heart disease compared to people without diabetes. Keeping your blood sugar levels within the normal range or treating diabetes if you already have this disease will help you protect your heart. Prevention of diabetes, as well as prevention of heart diseases, includes:


  • A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, dark vegetables, fiber, lean meat
  • Exercise regularly
  • Maintain a healthy weight


A Family History

Well, this is not the case, but it is necessary to discuss your family's health history with your doctor. If your brother or father had heart disease before the age of 55, or your sister or mother before the age of 65, you may have a higher risk of heart disease.

You will also need to discuss certain types of cardiovascular risk factors that exist in your family, such as HB and high cholesterol. Why?: The genes you inherited from your parents can affect your future health.


For example, even if you are a Kali-loving yogi, your parents may have passed on to you a gene that causes familial hypercholesterolemia, a genetic disease that causes high cholesterol levels that must be combated with medication. But keep in mind that genes are not always fate. If you take good care of your heart, you may be able to avoid heart disease.


What lifestyle habits help prevent heart disease?

Here's a long list of all the things you can do to protect your body's most important muscles. Depending on your current habits and lifestyle, this may not be easy. But the benefits to your heart health-and your overall health-are hard to overstate.


Quit smoking

We know that many of you have tried to get rid of the habit of smoking - and more than once. Don't give up! There are many ways to quit smoking, so if nicotine gum doesn't help you, a patch may help. Or hypnosis. Or even the prescription drug Shantix.


It's important to keep fighting for your heart—and for your life. If you slip, let it go and try again with a new approach. You can do it. And if you need help, check out the American Heart Association's support page to help you quit smoking.


How exactly does smoking harm you? That:


  • Increases blood pressure
  • Reduces the level of good HDL while increasing the level of LDL cholesterol
  • Damage to cells of the cardiovascular system
  • This contributes to the accumulation of plaque, which, as you know, can lead to a number of other problems, including heart attack and stroke


Although the number of smokers in the United States has declined over the years, approximately 1 in 6 American adults still light up. Remember that there is no safe amount of smoking. But what about e-cigarettes, you ask? The fact is that Juul, e-cigarette pens and their modifications have not yet been sufficiently studied to fully understand the risks. However, many of the toxic chemicals you inhale when smoking are linked to heart disease. Follow the advice of the American Heart Association: do everything possible to quit and e-smoking.


A diet that is good for the heart

What you eat has a real impact on your heart, both for the better and for the worse. An unhealthy diet can increase blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol, all while increasing your waistline. This is the right way to heart disease. Your best choice? Select the following:


  • Foods rich in saturated fats, such as fatty cuts of beef, lamb, pork and other meats, as well as dairy products such as butter and cheese
  • Trans fats contained in products such as cakes, margarine and lard, bakery products such as frozen pizza, pie cakes, cakes, cookies, crackers. (Although the FDA officially banned it in 2015, some products are being phased out and may still be available.)
  • Foods high in sodium, such as processed foods, snacks, pizza, canned snacks, vegetables, and soups.
  • Sugary foods such as soft drinks, sweets, fruit drinks, sweets and many breakfast cereals.


What then should you eat? You have a lot of delicious options. You can follow the so-called Mediterranean diet, in which special attention is paid to lean meat, fish, whole-grain products rich in fiber, fruits, vegetables, legumes and other whole foods, as well as healthy fats such as olive oil. If you are concerned about hemoglobin levels, talk to your doctor about the DASH diet (Dietary approaches to ending hypertension), which focuses on nutritious foods with low sodium content.


Of course, proper nutrition also means eating the right amount of food to prevent weight gain or lose weight if you have extra pounds. There is no doubt that changing your eating habits will not be an easy task. For some of us, eating is as addictive as smoking is for others.


Consider finding a registered dietitian who can help you plan and develop healthy eating strategies to achieve your goals. Working with a professional (if you can rock him) is 100% great, but if that's not possible, take small steps - don't try to change everything overnight. For example, if you are a big fan of soda, set a goal to change one can to seltzer for a few days. When it gets easier, even increase the bid. You can do it - and your heart will be grateful to you.


Exercise regularly and often

Physical exercise strengthens the heart muscle, allowing it to work more efficiently. It also helps to lower unhealthy blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels. And that's not all: exercise can also help you in your weight loss efforts by relieving some of the burden that being overweight puts on your heart. But if you're like four out of five other Americans, you probably don't exercise for at least 150 minutes of moderate heart-protecting exercise a week.


We understand that. It can be difficult to fit 30 minutes of exercise into your busy schedule most days, but did you know that you don't have to do all the exercises at once? Divide your time into three 10-minute aerobic exercises that stimulate sweating and pump the heart. And you can do any exercises you like: brisk walking, cycling, jogging, jumping on jacks or jump rope. Everything is doing its job. Also important: get up from your desk or sofa and move more often. Prolonged sitting on the ass is associated with heart disease and diabetes.


Weight Loss

If you exercise and improve your diet, you are already on the way to losing weight and reducing the load on the heart muscle. Hurray! You also reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. But what weight loss goal should you set for yourself? Studies show that losing just 5-10% of your body weight can lead to significant health benefits. If you are not sure where your weight has decreased, we can help you figure it out with our health calculators.


Other metrics, such as your waist size, are also important because excess abdominal fat is linked to heart disease and even heart attacks, according to a 2018 study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association. Fat in the middle of the abdomen causes chronic inflammation, which leads to high blood pressure and cholesterol. Men, try to increase your waist to 40 inches or less. Ladies, aim for 35 or less.


Prioritize good sleep

If you regularly do not get enough sleep at night, the consequences can be much more serious than feeling sluggish the next day. Over time, the lack of GG contributes to the development of obesity, HB, diabetes.


It also increases the risk of a heart attack, because prolonged lack of sleep can increase your heart rate, as well as lead to increased blood pressure and certain chemicals associated with inflammation, which can put additional strain on your heart.


This is especially true if you have a condition called obstructive sleep apnea. Sleep apnea often interrupts your breathing throughout the night, although only short periods do not allow you to fully wake up. For this reason, you may think that you slept through the night, despite the fact that you felt tired the next day.


If you always feel tired during the day or your partner complains of snoring, talk to your doctor about sleep apnea, as this increases your chances of heart failure, arrhythmia and stroke. Then ask about sleep research to monitor your breathing in the hospital, and about CPAP therapy that can make it easier for you to breathe and protect your heart.


Chronic insomnia-difficulty falling asleep, continuing to sleep, or both-can also damage your heart. In addition, when you don't sleep well, you tend to make the wrong food choices and lose motivation to exercise the next day. If you suffer from insomnia, consult your doctor. Although there are medications that can help, you may also be a good candidate for CBT, which has been proven to be effective (and contains no medications!). Treatment.


Limit the consumption of alcoholic beverages

Listen, if you like to have a beer or a cocktail at the end of a long week, keep drinking (if otherwise you feel good)! Drinking one drink a day if you are a woman and two if you are a man (because men digest alcohol differently than women) is usually perfectly normal. But don't forget to pour generously: one drink is equal to 12 ounces of beer, five ounces of wine or 1.5 ounces of spirits such as gin or bourbon. When they drink really moderately, we say "hurrah!" to this.

When you overeat, drinking alcohol can directly or indirectly harm your heart. This can lead to high blood pressure, as well as increase the likelihood of heart failure, stroke and atrial fibrillation. Excessive alcohol consumption also increases the level of triglycerides, a type of fat found in the blood and associated with heart disease. And alcohol is full of empty calories, which can gain unnecessary pounds, strain your body, make it work hard.


Allow yourself to relax (for example, really relax).

Many of us feel guilty for looking for downtime to relax, but regular relaxation of body and soul is just as necessary as other preventive measures when it comes to heart disease. So, take these timeouts!


Experts can't fully explain why stress and your heart don't go well together, but there are some very strong connections. After all, stress affects many things that are known to be risk factors for heart disease. This can lead to inflammation, increase blood pressure, and affect cholesterol levels in the blood.


Stress also encourages behaviors that compromise your heart health. For example, when you are under severe stress, you may overeat, abuse alcohol or light a cigarette. Your goal: to find ways to reduce stress if it is constant in your life. Regular exercise, which we talked about above, can help - yoga is especially good in this regard. You should also try meditation, deep breathing, improve your sleep and chat with friends.


As we've said before, there's a lot you can do to prevent heart disease from occurring in the first place — and even if you develop some form of it, you can apply many of these prevention tips to prevent it from getting worse. Your heart is the engine of your body. Keep it in good shape, and it will help you keep getting into the rhythm for years to come.

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