Coronary Heart Disease And Heart Attack

Coronary Heart Disease And Heart Attack

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What is Coronary Heart Disease (CHD)?

The heart is a muscular organ that works 24 hours a day.  To perform well, it needs a constant supply of oxygen and nutrients, which is delivered by the blood through the coronary arteries.

That blood flow can be reduced by a process called atherosclerosis, in which plaques or fatty substances build up inside the walls of blood vessels.

In CHD, atherosclerosis affects the coronary arteries, progressively narrowing the arteries with less and less blood reaching the heart muscle.

When too little blood reaches a part of the body, the condition is called ischemia.  When this occurs with the heart, it’s called cardiac ischemia.  If the blood supply is nearly or completely, and abruptly, cut off, a heart attack results and cells in the heart muscle that do not receive enough oxygen begin to die.

What are the Symptoms?

Symptoms of CHD vary.  Some people feel no discomfort, while others have chest pain or shortness of breath.  Called angina, the pain is often felt behind the breast bone and may radiate up the left arm or neck.  It may also be felt in the shoulder, elbow, jaw or back.  It is usually brought on by exercise, lasting 2 to 5 minutes, and is eased by rest.

Sometimes, the first symptom of CHD is a heart attack or cardiac arrest (a sudden, abrupt loss of heart function).

Heart Attack Warning Signs
•    Chest Discomfort
Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness, or pain in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes.
•    Discomfort in Other Areas of the Upper Body
Can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw, or stomach.
•    Shortness of Breath
Often comes with or before chest discomfort.
•    Other Signs
May include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea, or light-headedness.

How to Reduce Your Chance of a Heart Attack
To find your risk for a heart attack, check the boxes that apply to you:
    A family history of early heart disease
(Father or brother diagnosed before age 55)
(Mother or sister diagnosed before age 65)        One or more previous heart attacks, angina, bypass surgery or angioplasty, stroke, or blockages in neck or leg arteries
    Age (Men 45 years or older; Women 55 years or older)        Overweight
    High blood cholesterol        Physical inactivity
    High blood pressure        Cigarette smoking
    Stress        Diabetes
The more risk factors you have, the greater your risk for a heart attack.
How to Prevent CHD

•    Stop smoking
•    Avoid being overweight
Cut down your calorie intake to lose excessive body fat and achieve your ideal body weight.
•    Healthy diet: low fat, sugar and salt
Low fat (by avoiding food rich in cholesterol and saturated fat, e.g. animal fat, lard, butter, egg yolk, organ meats), low sugar and low salt diet.  This will help to prevent hypertension and diabetes.
•    Avoid stress
Cultivate a relaxed life style, try not to overwork, allow for breaks each day to slow down and learn to relax.
•    Exercise regularly
Exercise can be a form of activity that you enjoy, such as brisk walking, gardening or dancing, and should be in accordance with your age, general state of health and body fitness.  30 minutes of aerobic activity thrice per week to the point of slight exertion will be beneficial.  Choose non-competitive sports and avoid over-exertion.  If you are male and over 40 or female over 50, if you have not exercised for a long time, if you already have CHD or other chronic health problems, consult your doctor first.
•    Avoid excessive amount of alcohol
Regular heavy drinking is damaging to health.
•    Have your blood pressure and blood sugar checked every year
It has been demonstrated that early detection and proper treatment of high blood pressure and diabetes can prevent damage to the coronary arteries.

 

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Posted on มิถุนายน 6, 2013, in บทความ. Bookmark the permalink. ใส่ความเห็น.

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