Reducing the Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke

| Health and Wellness

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The best defense against heart disease and stroke is to take control of the risk factors that could escalate to coronary artery disease, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, smoking, stress, excessive alcohol consumption, being overweight and physical inactivity.

There are only four risk factors we cannot control, age, gender, ethnicity and genetics; however, we can control how we live our lives. Almost all risk factors can be controlled:

  • High blood pressure is the number one risk factor for heart disease and stroke
  • High blood cholesterol (also known as high levels of fat in your body) is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke
  • Diabetes develops when your body does not produce enough insulin, or does not effectively use the insulin it produces
  • Being overweight and obese are major risk factors for heart disease and stroke. If you can achieve and maintain a healthy weight,your risk of heart disease and stroke is significantly reduced
  • Drinking too much of any alcohol cause high blood pressure and may lead to a heart disease or stroke
  • People who are physically inactive are twice as likely to be at risk of heart disease or stroke as those who are physically active
  • Smoking and being exposed to second hand smoke has many negative health effects that increase the risk of developing heart disease and stroke
  • Excessive stress can be harmful to your health and increase the chance of heart disease and stroke by raising your blood pressure and blood cholesterol