Better Health Channel

Heart disease, along with stroke and lineage vessel disease, belongs to the group of conditions together known as cardiovascular disease ( CVD ). cardiovascular disease is a leading induce of death in Australia. 41,849 deaths were attributed to CVD in Australia in 2018. cardiovascular disease can occur when arteries that add lineage and oxygen to your heart muscle and early organs ( such as the brain and kidneys ) become clogged with fatso corporeal called plaque or atheroma. This process is called atherosclerosis. It can start when you are young and be well advanced by the clock you reach middle age. If your arteries become excessively narrow, less blood can reach your heart muscleman or your genius. When this happens in arteries of the center, it can lead to symptoms such as angina ( chest pain ). If a blood clot forms in the pin down artery and blocks the rake provision to part of your center, it can cause a kernel attack. If this happens in the arteries supplying rake to the brain, this can cause a stroke.

Understanding your cardiovascular disease risk score

In the past, your sophisticate may have measured and treated each of your CVD hazard factors one at a meter. It is nowadays recommend that overall risk be assessed to determine your personal heart disease and stroke-risk score.

hazard score puts many of the risk factors together. This is a morsel like putting all the pieces of a perplex in concert so you can see the hale mental picture. By looking at the unharmed mental picture, your doctor can discuss ways to reduce your risk of stroke or heart attack. Risk decrease strategies include medications, operation and life style changes. however, if you are already known to be at high hazard ( for exemplar, if you have had a previous heart attack or stroke, have severe kidney disease, very high blood pressure or have diabetes and are over 60 years old ), a risk score will not need to be calculated. Your doctor will tell you if you are in this group and advise you about what to do to reduce your gamble.

Heart disease and stroke risk factors

There is no single lawsuit for CVD, but there are hazard factors that increase your probability of a affection attack or stroke. There are modifiable factors ( ones that you can change ) and non-modifiable factors ( ones that you can ’ triiodothyronine change ). Heart disease and stroke risk factors that you can change admit : Social isolation and lack of sociable confirm are risk factors for CVD that can be changed, although it can seem challenging. One way to help with aloneness is to learn how to improve your social connections. risk factors you can ’ triiodothyronine variety include increasing long time, being male, being post-menopausal and having a family history of CVD. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are besides at increased risk of CVD. The good news is that you can reduce your overall risk of developing CVD by leading a healthy life style and taking medicines as prescribed by your doctor.

Smoking and cardiovascular disease risk

vitamin a well as causing cancer, smoking affects the arteries that supply blood to your heart and early parts of your consistency. It reduces the come of oxygen in your rake and damages your artery walls. Smoking increases your gamble of kernel attack, stroke and peripheral vascular disease ( besides known as peripheral artery disease ) – which can lead to gangrene and limb amputation ). Smoking makes your blood ‘ stickier ’, causing blood cells to clump in concert. This slows rake flow through your arteries and makes blockages more coarse. Blockages may cause heart assail and stroke. Smoking besides makes your artery walls sticky, causing them to become choked with fatso material called plaque or atheroma. Smokers often have cold hands or feet as a resultant role of clog arteries, which may besides lead to unplayful problems such as necrosis. If your coronary thrombosis artery becomes clogged, it can cause angina. If a lineage clot forms in the constrict coronary artery and completely blocks the rake provide to a part of your heart, it can cause a heart assail.

Cholesterol and cardiovascular disease risk

Cholesterol is a fatty substance produced naturally by your body ( blood cholesterol ). It is used for many different things in your body but is a problem when there ’ s excessively a lot of it in your blood. eminent total cholesterol causes fatso material to gradually build up in your body ’ randomness arteries, making it harder for rake to flow through. It is chiefly caused by eating foods high in impregnate fats and trans fats. Your full cholesterol includes two types of cholesterol, which are :

  • Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) – also known as ‘bad’ cholesterol because it can add to the build-up of plaque in your arteries and increase your risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • High-density lipoprotein (HDL) is also known as ‘good’ cholesterol because it helps to protect you against heart attack and stroke.

Most of the entire cholesterol in your blood is made up of ‘ bad ’ LDL cholesterol. alone a humble function is made up of ‘ good ’ HDL cholesterol. You should aim for low LDL cholesterol and higher HDL cholesterol on advice from your doctor. If you are having trouble with your cholesterol levels, a dietician can help you to eat healthily for your particular needs.

Blood pressure and cardiovascular disease risk

Blood blackmail is the atmospheric pressure of the rake in your arteries ( the rake vessels that carry oxygen and nutrients to your body ) as it is pumped around your consistency by your heart. Blood coerce depends on two main things : the sum of rake pumped by your kernel and how easily the lineage can flow through your arteries. Your lineage pressure will go up and down throughout the sidereal day, depending on the prison term of day and what you are doing. however, high lineage blackmail is a condition where your blood press is systematically senior high school. Your kin history, eating patterns, alcohol consumption, weight unit and level of forcible bodily process have a hard charm on rake pressure. In some people, medicines, including the oral contraceptive pill, contraceptive ‘ terminal ’ injections, steroids ( cortisone-like medicines ) and arthritis medicines, can besides raise blood coerce. high blood pressure can overload your affection and arteries and speed up the artery-clogging march. This can lead to problems such as heart attack and stroke. high blood pressure can besides affect arteries to early parts of your body, such as the eyes, kidneys and legs. If high lineage press is not treated, your heart may weaken because of the constant extra necessitate. This may cause ‘ kernel failure ’, a serious condition with symptoms such as fatigue, shortness of breath and swell of the feet and ankles.

Diabetes and cardiovascular disease risk

People with diabetes are at greater risk of heart attack, angina and stroke. similarly, people with CVD are generally prone to diabetes. For people with both diseases, the risk of heart attack and stroke is higher than for those without them. The report increase in diabetes in Australia is thought to be associated with more people being physically dormant, insalubrious eating habits and being overweight. The two chief types of diabetes are :

If you have diabetes, manage your condition by being physically active, choosing healthy foods and maintaining a healthy weight unit. You may besides need to take medicines to maintain normal blood-glucose levels, arsenic well as making life style changes such as quitting smoking. Manage your health by reducing sum cholesterol, monitoring lineage atmospheric pressure and regularly seeing your doctor of the church for diabetes reviews.

Being overweight and cardiovascular disease risk

Being overweight or corpulent increases your risk of a issue of health problems, including : Carrying extra weight around your center ( being ‘ apple-shaped ’ ) is more of a health gamble, so it is particularly important for you to lose weight if this is the case. To achieve a healthy body weight, balance the energy ( kilojoules ) coming into your body through food and drinks, with the energy ( kilojoules ) being used up by your body through regular physical activity.

Healthy eating and cardiovascular disease risk

Eating a variety of foods is effective for our health and can help reduce the risk of disease, including heart disease. This helps maintain a healthy and interest diet and provides a range of different nutrients to the body. To reduce your affection disease gamble, follow these heart healthy feed patterns recommended by the Heart Foundation :

Physical activity and cardiovascular disease risk

physical bodily process is an authoritative separate of looking after your health and reducing your risk of CVD. regular physical activity will :

  • Improve your long-term health.
  • Reduce your risk of heart attack.
  • Give you more energy.
  • Help you to manage your weight.
  • Help you to achieve healthier total cholesterol.
  • Lower your blood pressure.
  • Make your bones and muscles stronger.
  • Make you feel more confident, happy and relaxed.
  • Help you to sleep better.

If you have had a heart attack, regular physical activity will help you to recover more promptly. If you have diabetes, it will besides help you to manage your blood-glucose levels. physical activity doesn ’ triiodothyronine have to be strenuous. Moderate-intensity physical activity, such as bracing walk, is capital for your health. It is recommended that you do 30–45 minutes of moderate-intensity physical natural process on most, if not all, days of the workweek. You can do this in smaller bouts, such as three 10-minute walks, if it is easier.

Walking for heart health

Try walking to stay active. The Heart Foundation has community walking groups all over Australia you can join. Walking for an average of 30 minutes or more a day can :

  • Lower our risk of heart disease, stroke (by 35%) and type 2 diabetes (by 40%).
  • Manage weight, blood pressure and cholesterol.
  • Reduce our risk of some cancers.
  • Maintain bone density – reducing risk of





  • Improve balance and coordination – reducing your risk of falls and other injuries.

Depression and cardiovascular disease risk

Studies have shown that people with low, those who are socially isolate or do not have timbre social support are at greater risk of developing CVD. low can be treated with medical and non-medical therapies. If you think you have depression, talking to your health professional is the best first step.

Family history and cardiovascular disease risk

A person ’ s class history of disease ( their genes ) can increase their leaning to develop :

  • High blood pressure (hypertension)


  • High cholesterol.
  • Diabetes.
  • A particular body shape.

Although having a class history of CVD is a hazard component you can ’ triiodothyronine change, it does not mean that you will develop it. however, if you do have a family history of CVD, it is important to reduce or remove early risk factors. For exemplar, adopting healthy eating patterns, do not smoke, and lead an active, healthy life style.

Gender, age and cardiovascular disease risk

broadly, men have a higher risk than women of developing CVD in in-between senesce. The hazard rises as they get older. however, the hazard of developing CVD is an important topic for women, particularly as they get older. It is not clear why women tend to get CVD at a late age than men, although it is probable that hormonal changes after menopause, combined with changes in their gamble factors, play a function. Despite your sex and age, you can reduce your risk of developing CVD if you follow a healthy life style and take medicines as prescribed by your sophisticate.

Where to get help

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Category : Healthy