Getting Heart Smart

Maintaining and Restoring Cardiac Health for Seniors

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, heart disease is the number one killer in the U.S. and a major cause of disability. There are many different forms of heart disease.

The most common cause of heart disease is narrowing or blockage of the coronary arteries. This occurs when blood vessels that supply blood to the heart itself cannot supply the heart. This is called coronary artery disease and happens slowly over time. This is a major reason people have heart attacks.
Although some people have a genetic (inherited) tendency to develop heart disease, this condition can affect anyone, especially later in life, when the effects of poor diet and lifestyle choices typically begin to take their toll. Those with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and/or a family history of heart disease are at greatest risk. Other risk factors include:

  • Obesity
  • Inactivity
  • Diets high in fat content
  • Tobacco use
  • Constant stress

If diagnosed with heart disease, you will probably need to make certain changes in your lifestyle. Depending on your individual situation, this may mean changing your diet, exercising regularly, losing weight, eliminating smoking and taking medications as prescribed. There are always steps you can take to prevent heart disease or limit it’s affect on the body. Only you can make these steps for a healthier heart.

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