Heart attacks can creep up on you when you least expect it. Are you prepared?

Heart disease is one of the nation’s deadliest killers taking the lives of almost one million Americans each year. Each of us has a different susceptibility to cardiovascular disease. Your fitness level and what you eat play a major role. Approximately 64 million Americans have cardiovascular disease, and here’s the shocker; as many as 40 percent of those who suffer a heart attack have no symptoms. A heart attack may occur due to heart disease but not always and although it is the leading cause of death it can be prevented. Women usually have fewer heart attacks than men, but after menopause women catch up to men in the number of heart attacks experienced.

So, what are the factors that lead to heart disease?

The most commonly recognized risk factors are:

1 Stress

2 Smoking

3 High levels of LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol)

4 Low levels of HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol)

5 High Blood-pressure.

6 Obesity

7 Diabetes

8 Destructive form of an amino acid called homocysteine

9 Heredity

The heart is the most crucial organ to sustain life and to keep it ticking efficiently, our priority should be to prevent its deterioration. The simplest Mantra for the prevention of heart disease is; eat well, exercise, and adopt a healthy lifestyle. This has been said countless times before and the simple truth is that those who do follow through with the advice enjoy a much healthier and longer life.

Some factors to consider when adopting a healthier lifestyle include but not limited to: (also check with your physician)

1 Cut down on dietary fat and cholesterol

2 Check your blood pressure regularly

3 Don’t smoke (fortunately there are a lot of resources available for those wanting to quit).

4 Learn to meditate, this will lessen stress.

5 Exercise – Being sedentary is one of the biggest risk factors for heart attacks.

6 Control your weight – If you’re obese

7 Control your diabetes

Symptoms of a heart attack

The American Heart Association lists them as:

-Uncomfortable pressure, fullness, or squeezing, and excruciating pain in the chest.

-Pain spreading to shoulder, neck, and arms. Specifically left-sided neck and arm pain.

-Lightheadedness, fainting.

-Shortness of breath with little exertion.

-Profuse sweating.

The first hour is very critical. So, don’t waste time thinking it’s gas or flatulence. Act immediately and call 911 don’t waste time calling your doctor, he’ll most likely ask you to call 911 anyway. Heart disease can be easily prevented it’s just a matter of implementing a healthier lifestyle.

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