How to Prevent Heart Disease at Any Age
Dealing with heart disease (or cardiovascular disease, CVD); the phrase itself frightening enough, can be the horrible tale of someone’s life. The figure for deaths due to heart disease has constantly been rising than the number of deaths due to cancer (Heron and Anderson, 2016). 32% of individuals younger than age 75 are suffering from any heart condition that leads to death (Schoen, J.F and Mitchell, N. R, 2010, p.530). Life expectancy would increase by 7 years if all cardiovascular disease, a very common heart condition, were to be eliminated (Schoen, J.F and Mitchell, N. R, 2010, p.530). Hence, it is conspicuous how significant it is to maintain our lives in a way to prevent heart disease because it is affecting every decade of human life.
It is never late to think about health and begin to practice a lifestyle that can prevent several diseases and can give satisfactory peace and happiness along with good health ahead. Concerning heart diseases, that have an arduous journey to its cure with a burden on finances and even after prolong treatment can decrease the overall life span of the person, prevention is always a better choice to make for a healthy future because heart disease can strike any person at any age.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”― Benjamin Franklin
It is evident that major risk factors are unable to control as the process of aging cannot be reduced, the genes we carry from our parents are not able to adjust neither the gender of a person as males are more prone to developing heart disease but women also tend to suffer from heart disease as their chances increase after menopause. The race is another factor which cannot be altered (Understand Your Risks to Prevent a Heart Attack, 2016). But one can slow down the process of developing heart disease by maintaining a healthy lifestyle at a very young age. Foundation to a healthy life is to eat healthily and avoid being lazy and have a physically active life.
However, we can diminish the chances of heart disease by evaluating other risk factors that can be controlled and by taking preventive measures for them at any age.
Teenagers and people in their 20s should be more peculiar about their eating habits, particularly opting for healthy foods. They should exercise daily. They can add sports in their routine which will be the best exercise for them. They should also avoid smoking and drinking alcohol. Prevention at this age can reduce the chances of Chronic Heart Disease immensely.
In their research Hackshaw, Morris, Boniface, Tang, and Milenković, Low Cigarette Consumption and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease and Stroke: meta-analysis of 141 cohort studies in 55 study reports concluded that cutting down cigarette consumption to 1 per day is of no good to heath as smoking 1 cigarette in a single day will increase the risk of developing coronary heart disease greater in a person than smoking 20 cigarettes per day (Hackshaw, Morris, Boniface, Tang, Milenković, 2018). Active smokers of any age whether teenagers or young adults or elders, everyone should stop smoking while passive smokers should strictly avoid being around active smokers as it will also increase the risk of heart disease by 30% (How to Help Prevent Heart Disease At Any Age, 2015).
High blood cholesterol levels can also elevate the chances of developing cardiovascular disease. As age progresses this problem is round the corner for meat lovers. One can prevent or lower established high blood cholesterol level by staying away from saturated fats, removing trans-fats from the diet, eating foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, increase quantity of soluble fibers and add whey protein in the diet (Top 5 lifestyle changes to improve your cholesterol, 2018).
The reimbursement of lowering blood cholesterol level for Chronic Heart Disease threat are age-related: a 10% decrease in blood cholesterol turn out a drop in Chronic Heart Disease risk of 50% at the age of 40, 40% at age 50, 30% at age 60, and 20% at age 70 (Hajar, 2017).
Hypertension rises up the occurrence of cardiovascular disease (Hajar, 2017). Hypertension prompts all clinical indications of Chronic Heart Disease including heart attack, angina, and sudden death (Hajar, 2017). Hypertension can be prevented by hanging on to healthy weight, eating fruits and vegetables loaded in potassium, exercising on a daily basis, lessening salt intake, limiting alcohol and by regular monitoring blood pressure (McCoy, 2016).
Stress is always disturbing not just for mood and mental health but also for the health of your heart by increasing blood pressure and heart rate. These 2 factors together produce damaging effects on arterial walls (How to Help Prevent Heart Disease at Any Age, 2015). Hence, it is beneficial to manage stress levels regardless of the age of a person because everyone in this era is surrounded by problems whether it be personal, educational, professional, etc., which causes stress. Adopting a creative hobby, indulging in physical activities, practicing good self-care skills and socializing with positive people can help get rid of stress before sinking into depression and causing heart disease (Wilson, 2019).
Insulin helps to maintain blood glucose level by directing glucose inside the tissues to produce ATPs and energizing them, but obesity reduces the sensitivity of tissues to insulin, and as an outcome causes insulin resistance which leads to diabetes (Maitra, 2010, p.1136). An estimated 68% of people suffering from diabetes die more often from some sort of heart disease (Understand Your Risks to Prevent a Heart Attack, 2016). A diabetic patient should go for regular checkups and work with the doctor to manage blood glucose levels and risk factors associated with it. They should also take on a lifestyle that can help in maintaining serum glucose (Understand Your Risks to Prevent a Heart Attack, 2016).
Chronic kidney disease can also lead to heart disease. Individuals with chronic kidney disease should look after their blood glucose levels and blood pressure. The levels of calcium and phosphorus in the body should be normal and cholesterol levels should be properly maintained by introducing a balanced diet and exercising on regular basis, completely quit smoking and doctor’s prescription of medicines and guidance for managing proper health should be strictly followed (American kidney fund, 2019)
So, from the above-mentioned risk factors and their preventive measures, it is concluded that a balanced diet and physical activity for example sports, brisk walking, gardening, etc. can help you prevent heart disease. A parent should maintain their children’s life accordingly so that chances can be minimized by passing time. Consulting a doctor for proper management of risk factor is very crucial, early management can save patients from developing heart disease. Therefore, people in their 20s and older should have regular screening for their proper health and early diagnosis to avoid any risk factors. With increasing age, one should more be focused on the management of blood glucose, blood pressure, blood cholesterol level, stress, and obesity.
Hackshaw.A, Morris, K.J, Boniface.S, TANG, L.J, Milenkovic.D. (2018). Low cigarette consumption and risk of coronary heart disease and stroke: a meta-analysis of 141 cohort studies in 55 study reports, the BMJ. Doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.j5855
Hajra.R. (2017). Risk Factors for Coronary Artery Disease: Historical Perspectives. Heart views, 18(3), 109–114. Doi: https://dx.doi.org/10.4103%2FHEARTVIEWS.HEARTVIEWS_106_17
Heart disease & chronic kidney disease (CKD),n.d. American kidney fund, Retrieved from https://www.kidneyfund.org/kidney-disease/chronic-kidney-disease-ckd/complications/heart-disease/
Heron M, Anderson RN. (2016). Changes in the leading cause of death: Recent patterns in heart disease and cancer mortality. NCHS data brief, no 254. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db254.pdf
How to Help Prevent Heart Disease At Any Age, (2015), American heart association, Retrieved from https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-lifestyle/how-to-help-prevent-heart-disease-at-any-age
Maitra.A, (2010). The endocrine sytem. Kumar.V, Abbas.K.A, Fausto.N and Aster.C.J, Robbins and cotran pathologic basis of disease (p.530), Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier.
McCoy.K, 2016, 6 Ways to Prevent Hypertension, Retrieved from https://www.everydayhealth.com/hypertension/preventing.aspx
Schoen, J.F and Mitchell, N.R. (2010).The heart, Kumar.V, Abbas.K.A, Fausto.N and Aster.C.J, Robbins and cotran pathologic basis of disease (p.530), Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier.
Top 5 lifestyle changes to improve your cholesterol, (2018), Mayo clinic, Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/high-blood-cholesterol/in-depth/reduce-cholesterol/art-20045935
Understand Your Risks to Prevent a Heart Attack, (2016), American heart association, Retrieved from https://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/heart-attack/understand-your-risks-to-prevent-a-heart-attack
Wilson.C. first publish (2020). Manage your stress. Los Angeles, L.A, London, UK, New Delhi, N.D, Singapore, Washington DC, Melbourne: Sage publications Ltd