Friday, March 09, 2012

More Women Are Affected By Heart Disease!

It is thought that heart disease is more common among men. But as what NIH (National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute) has announced, heart disease is the number one killer of women in the United States and it is also a leading cause of disability among women.

Heart disease, rather than breast cancer, has become the number one killer for women in Malaysia. The statistics provided by the Heart Foundation Malaysia (HFM) showed that 1 in 3 women died of heart disease while only 1 in 8 women died of breast cancer. In fact, heart disease is the major cause of death in government hospitals, which accounted for about 25 percent of all deaths.

In Goa, a state in India, 10 to 11 percent of the population is being hit by heart diseases. While heart disease is spread across the genders, women seem to be leading and this is a situation that has never prevailed in Goa. Initially, heart disease was restricted to the age group above 50 years but now people between 30 and 40 are diagnosed with heart disease.

According to cardiac experts, more women die of heart disease especially after menopause when the oestrogen level in their body changes. When one grows older, the risk of getting heart disease also rises. However, the latest trend does show that those below the age of 40 have also developed heart disease due to their unhealthy eating habits, smoking and alcohol consumption. Other modifiable risk factors include high cholesterol level, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and stress.

It is important that the younger adults should adopt a healthy lifestyle by avoiding alcohol consumption and smoking, having a balanced diet, exercising at least 30 minutes or getting for a brisk walk everyday and learning how to handle stress.

People could lower their high cholesterol risk factor by consuming low cholesterol food items and avoiding food high in animal fat like dairy products, egg yolk, coconut milk and seafood except fish. People should also consume less salt, sugar and oily food to lower other risk factors such as hypertension (high blood pressure) and obesity.

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