Portsmouth Cardiac Associates
 
Please call us on 023 9236 5010 to discuss your requirements or email info@portsmouthcardiac.co.uk
 
 
 
Important heart health facts
 
 

These days many people worry about getting fit.  They have good reason as physical fitness is one of the ways of avoiding heart disease. Frequent exercise is recommended as part of an overall life style pattern which can help to minimise the risk of heart attacks and angina.  Anyone worried about reducing their risk of heart disease needs to consider other important risk factors.

One of the most important is the levels of certain fats in the blood.  Cholesterol is the most important of these.  A build up of cholesterol in the wall of an artery can lead to blockages which restricts the blood supply to the heart or indeed to other organs.  Contrary to popular belief a person’s cholesterol level is largely dictated by their genetic make-up rather than by the food they eat.  There are many thin patients with high cholesterol and visa versa.  It is important to identify high cholesterol because modern treatments can lead to a very effective lowering of the cholesterol level which, in turn, translates to a much reduced risk of heart disease. 

Smoking is another important factor and even small numbers of cigarettes can lead to furring of the arteries.  Smoking also makes the blood more sticky and thus increases the chances of a clot occurring.  If a clot develops in a coronary artery it is termed a ‘coronary thrombosis’.  The clot blocks the blood supply to the heart, which leads to a heart attack. 

High blood pressure, diabetes, and an animal fat rich diet are also important risk factors for heart disease.  Early and aggressive treatment of these conditions will decrease the risk of heart problems.  One risk factor that cannot be treated is a family history of heart attack or angina.  People with such a history should be especially careful to get their blood pressure and cholesterol checked and to think carefully about their lifestyle.