World Heart Day 29th September
Worldwide, 1 person dies every 2 seconds from a heart attack or stroke, claiming 17.3 million lives every year. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the single biggest killer in the world, being the cause of death for 31% of us. This number is predicted to rise to 23 million by 2030.
- Someone in the UK has a heart attack every 7 minutes
- Someone in the UK will have a stroke every 12 minutes
- 1.2 million men and 900,000 women in the UK are living with chronic angina
- 1 million men and 500,000 women in the UK are living with the after effects of a heart attack
- CVD costs the UK economy approximately £19 billion each year
There are two risk factors that we are not in control of, those being, becoming older, and having a family history of CVD.
However, all remaining risk factors are within our control, and can therefore be minimised. At least 80% of cardiovascular disease related deaths are preventable simply by addressing behavioural risk factors.
1. Smoking – contact your GP for advice on quitting smoking
2. Exercise – complete at least 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity exercise, or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity exercise
3. Alcohol – both men and women should consume no more than 14 units per week, spread throughout the week with at least 2 consecutive alcohol free days
4. Food – ensure than you eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables each day and avoid processed and refined foods, and foods high in salt, sugar and fat; this will help to maintain a healthy body weight, which is vital in reducing your risk of CVD
5. High blood pressure and cholesterol –
Please be aware that the above link is not aimed at those who have clinical diagnosis, but simply an aid to lifting and lightening mood.
CVD cannot be cured but treatment and positive lifestyle changes can reduce symptoms and greatly reduce the risk of further complications.
Minimising your risk of cardiovascular disease is vital if you want to live a full, happy and healthy life. So what are you waiting for?