Heart disorders such as coronary heart disease, atrial fibrillation, and cardiomyopathy, to name a few, are all grouped under the general phrase “heart illness.” Every 40 seconds, a heart attack occurs in the United States.
Every race and ethnic group in the world is affected by heart disease, which is the top cause of death for both men and women.
Heart Attack Prevention
Dr. Wuhl asserts that there are five essential recommendations for preventing heart attacks as you age:
- Remain active.
“I recommend at least 30 minutes of aerobic activity every day at least five days a week,” adds Dr. Wuhl. “Yes, even walking counts.” I frequently observe persons in their 70s and 80s who exercise regularly being able to stay on the treadmill longer than sedentary people in their 40s and 50s. Part of my employment entails performing stress testing on treadmills. Sedentary behavior is a risk factor for heart disease, according to research, but regular exercise can lower two other cardiac risk factors and prevent heart attacks. stress and depression.
Regularly check your cholesterol and blood pressure.
After the age of 50, a few times a year is likely sufficient for otherwise healthy patients; however, hypertensive individuals, particularly those who are using blood pressure medication, should undergo more frequent heart disease screenings. Dr. Wuhl states, “I frequently advise my hypertensive patients to get their own blood pressure devices and take their pressures at home regularly.” To review the data, I also ask them to keep a blood pressure diary and bring it with them to every appointment. Annual fasting cholesterol (lipid) panels are usually sufficient, but your physician could request that you have it checked if you start taking a new cholesterol medication or if your diet changes.
Consult your doctor about having your sleep apnea evaluated.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a prevalent disorder that frequently goes misdiagnosed and untreated and can result in a variety of cardiovascular consequences. It is characterized by recurrent episodes of hypopnea (insufficient breathing) and apnea (no breathing at all) when you are asleep. Up to 20% of the general population is thought to have moderate OSA. Men, African-Americans, obese people, and current smokers are more likely to have OSA. Excessive snoring, daytime sleepiness, morning headaches, poor concentration, mood swings, and even reflux or heartburn are warning signs and symptoms.
Eat heart-healthy foods.
You can still enjoy your meals if you follow a heart-healthy diet; you just need to control your intake of salt, sugar, and fat. Monitoring your blood pressure and eating a heart-healthy diet go hand in hand. Dr. Wuhl claims that high cholesterol diets with the wrong types of dietary fats can interfere with even the greatest dose of medication and that excessive salt consumption can cause or exacerbate hypertension. But not all fats are created equal; ‘good’ fats like those in fish and legumes may even be healthy. Another essential component of a heart-healthy diet and the best for preventing heart attacks is whole grains, along with fresh fruits and vegetables.
Stop smoking if you do. Do not begin if you do not.
Dr. Wuhl explains, “I know we doctors love to provide this advice, but it falls into the ‘easier said than done category. Fortunately, physicians have a variety of pharmacological and non-pharmacological methods at our disposal to assist smokers in quitting, including Chantix and e-Cigarettes, smoking cessation classes, and support groups. But if the patient isn’t prepared to quit, these techniques won’t help, as any doctor or counselor will tell you. I frequently advise smokers that stopping smoking would have a significantly greater impact on lowering their risk of heart disease than any amount of exercise or blood pressure medicine could.