How Women Can Prevent Heart Disease

Written by Janelle Lawrence

On February 21, 2013

prevent_heart_diseaseIt’s February and just about everywhere you look you see, “Go red for Women” but heart disease is a serious condition we need to focus on for more than just one month at a time. Prevent your risk for heart disease by understanding the causes and implementing the solutions.

What is Heart Disease?

Heart disease is a blanket term used to describe any disease that affects the heart.

Types of Heart Disease

  • Coronary Heart Disease – Failure of blood circulation in the heart due to clogged arteries.
  • Coronary Artery Disease – Inflammation and clogged arteries lead to the circulatory problems that cause heart disease.
  • Congenital Heart Disease – Weak muscles in the heart caused by a birth defect.
  • Valvular Heart Disease – A heart valve defect that affects blood circulation to the heart. May be developed over time or caused by a birth defect.
  • Hypertensive Heart Disease – The pressure inside the arteries is too high in the case of hypertensive heart disease, causing the heart to have to work faster to keep up.
  • Hypertrophic Heart Disease – Caused by thickened muscles in the heart, which obstructs proper blood flow.
  • Dilated Heart Disease – Enlargement of (usually) the left ventricle, which restricts pumping function.
  • Restrictive Heart Disease – In this type of heart disease, the walls of the heart ventricles are stiff, restricting blood flow.

Risks of Heart Disease

  • Age – Women ages 65 and older are at the highest risk of heart disease.
  • Family History – Those with a family history of heart disease and cardiovascular disease are at increased risk for developing these conditions themselves.
  • Smoking – Cigarette smoking more than doubles your risk of developing heart disease.
  • High Blood Pressure – Hypertensive women are at increased risk of developing heart disease.
  • Sedentary Lifestyle – Couch potatoes beware; you’re at increased risk for developing heart disease if you don’t exercise.
  • Diabetes – Three quarters of people with diabetes develop heart disease in their lifetime.
  • Race – Research has shown that heart disease risk is higher among African Americans, Mexican Americans, Native Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Asians.

How Women Can Prevent Heart Disease

  • Dietary Changes

The first line of defense against heart disease or any disease in general is a nutrient-rich diet. In the 20th and 21st centuries we’ve gotten away from natural healthy eating and traded in for convenience foods and boxed meals. These foods have no nutritional value and contain chemicals and preservatives that increase your body’s inflammatory response. Chronic inflammation is the root cause of all disease.

To lower your risk of heart disease, you must eat a healthy diet filled with organic vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, seeds, legumes, meat, poultry, and fish. Healthy fats are excellent for your heart too. Trans fats, the ones found in processed food, are the ones that cause heart disease. Saturated fats, however, like the ones found in butter and coconut oil are excellent for your health!

  • Lifestyle Changes

After a healthy diet come some important lifestyle changes.

    • Exercise

Moderate exercise at least 3 times per week for thirty minutes to an hour is enough to help fight inflammation, keep your metabolism high, and prevent heart disease.

Junge Frau zerbricht eine Zigarette young woman breaks a cigaret

    • Quit Smoking

Quitting smoking can cut your risk of heart disease in half. Smoking can be a very hard habit to kick but it’s well worth it.

    • Stress Relief

Stress is a normal part of life but when stress becomes chronic, it can take a serious toll on your heart. Relieve stress as often as you’re able. Read a book, take a yoga class, learn how to meditate; whatever it takes to protect your valuable health.

  • Supplements
    • Vitamin D – According to a study published in the New York Times, vitamin D has been shown to be very beneficial in preventing heart disease.
    • Magnesium – Magnesium is essential to health and millions of women suffer from a magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is responsible for proper neurological function. Heart spasms and cardiac arrhythmia are common signs you need more of this mineral.
    • CoQ10 – Coenzyme Q10 is vitally important for proper cardiovascular function. If you’re not making enough CoQ10 do to age or cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, your heart is in trouble.

Lowering your risk factors for heart disease doesn’t have to be complicated. Eating right, exercising, and making some lifestyle changes is all you need to avoid developing cardiovascular problems in the future!

Save a Life. Share This Important Information With Your Friends Now!

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