Unless diagnosed, heart disease can come as a huge surprise to most, potentially with life-altering consequences.
As our own Dr. Scott Murray says, “Unfortunately, often the first sign will be the heart attack that kills you”. So how do you know if you are more at risk of a heart attack or heart disease?
Without having tests, such as a CT scan, no one can really tell how likely it is that you will have a heart attack, but by determining risk factors, and how many of them apply to you, you can make the necessary changes to your lifestyle and diet to reduce the risks of heart disease.
A cardiologist can run through these risk factors with you in a consultation, and we will outline them in this article.
What affects my heart health?
The BHF defines risk factors as “conditions or habits that increase your risk of developing a disease.” While adding, “The good news is many heart and circulatory diseases are caused by risk factors that can be controlled, treated or modified.
The main risk factors for heart disease are as follows:
High blood pressure
High blood pressure is also called hypertension. If your blood pressure is either too high or too low, your heart muscle could be working harder than it should be. Venturi recommends: Regularly checking your blood pressure and taking the appropriate action to stabilise it.
Examples of heart disease in your ancestors can be a good indication that your genetic makeup is susceptible to a reoccurrence.Venturi recommends: Talk with cardiologist about your family history, and any other lifestyle factors that may indicate your risk levels of heart disease.
Smoking blocks arteries and causes numerous complications. Smokers are almost twice as likely to have a heart attack compared to people who have never smoked.
Venturi recommends: Quit smoking as soon as possible or reduce your daily intake.
Being overweight can have a big impact on your health, especially if you carry weight around your middle.Venturi recommends: light to moderate exercise regularly, and make dietary changes if necessary.
The heart is a muscle, and like any other muscle it needs physical activity to help it work properly.Venturi recommends: if you have a particularly sedentary lifestyle, or spend hours sitting at a desk at work, for example, you should take walks regularly to remain active.
Diabetes can cause damage to your blood vessels. This can lead to a heart attack or a stroke.
Find out if you are at risk
Book a consultation with us and know exactly what is required (if anything) to give yourself the best heart health, and reduce the risk of heart disease. All tests are done quickly, in one session with no waiting lists.