There are several types of heart diseases with heart attack, stroke, and congestive heart failure being the most common. Men as well as women, especially those older than 50 are at an increased risk of suffering from heart problems. There are many risk factors that contribute to cardiovascular diseases, including a family history of heart disease. Cardiovascular problems are a leading cause of mortality worldwide, and knowing the risk factors for heart problems can help you take preventive steps to reduce your chances of developing cardiovascular disease. This article outlines the top lifestyle factors that make you susceptible to getting heart disease.

Smoking Damages Your Heart

Smoking damages the lining in the arteries of your heart, and makes you susceptible to developing high blood pressure – both of which can induce heart problems such as angina or heart attack. Smoking reduces the oxygen content of your blood, requiring your heart to work harder to pump oxygen to other vital organs, which can eventually make your heart muscles weak. If you smoke, quit this habit right now to preserve your cardiovascular health.

Being Obese or Over-weight Increases Your Risk

Being obese or having too much fat accumulation around your waist are both recognized as risk factors for developing cardiovascular disease. Obesity contributes to other health hazards such as high cholesterol, increased blood pressure, and increased risk of type 2 diabetes, all of which can result in enhanced risk of heart disease. Healthy eating habits and an active lifestyle can help you manage your weight and also keep your heart in good condition.

High Blood Pressure and Elevated Cholesterol Are Known Risk Factors

Having high blood pressure can cause heart enlargement reducing its capacity to pump blood effectively, thus increasing your risk of heart attack or stroke. Increased levels of bad cholesterol such low-density lipoprotein (LDL) can lead to fat deposits in your arteries, increasing your risk of heart attack or stroke. Regular heath checks are important to know blood pressure levels and cholesterol numbers. Following your doctor’s advice can help you manage your blood pressure and cholesterol levels, reducing your chances of developing cardiovascular problems.

Cardiovascular diseases can also be caused by factors beyond control such as age, genetics, family history of heart disease, gender, race, etc. However, leading a healthy lifestyle combined with regular health checks can greatly reduce your risk for heart problems. Talk to your doctor if you have known risk factors of developing cardiovascular disease.

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