The number one killer!
Myth: Men die more often from heart attacks than women
Truth: Women die more often from heart attacks than men
It was always been believed that heart disease was the number one killer for men, when, in fact, new studies show that women are more likely to die from heart disease than men. 1 in 4 women will suffer a fatal heart—more than all cancers combined. Because the fallacy was that more men die from heart attacks than women, women have been understudied in this realm; only 38% of the studies for heart disease have been focused on women.
The CDC reports that 1/2 of all women will not recognize when a heart attack is happening and 2/3 will have unknowingly had prior symptoms—dull or sharp chest pain, jaw pain and abdominal or back discomfort, whether at rest or with exertion.
How will you know if you or your loved ones are at risk for a heart attack? The following are possible strong indicators:
- Strong family history—father under the age of 55 or mother under the age of 65 who suffered a heart attack
- Hypertension—this is more associated with women than men
- Diabetes—proven to wreak havoc on the cardiovascular system—there is a 2-4x greater chance of dying from heart disease
- Stress—the body releases stress hormones during times of stress creating inflammation, raising blood pressure and heart rate
- Menopause—the reduction in estrogen levels can put women at greater risk
Reducing your risk of heart disease, even with family history is possible.
- Get an annual check up from your doctor to make sure your good and bad cholesterols are at the proper levels and that your blood pressure and heart rate is within normal range
- Eat Healthy—limit fats and carbohydrates and remove saturated fats from your diet; substitute with healthy fats, such as olive oil, eat nuts, fish, legumes, and fruit lower in sugars
- Remove excessive alcohol, all drugs, tobacco and binge eating
- Educate yourself on the things you can do to live a healthier life
Exercise! It's probably one of the most important things you can do to help reduce your chances of suffering a heart attack. Find an exercise regimen that you can live with. Not sure what to do? The following are some great suggestions:
- Swimming is a great way to work all parts of your body while getting a wonderful cardio workout
- Build muscle mass with free weights or bands—it will burn calories and work your heart muscle
- Any aerobic activity that will raise your heart rate benefits heart health
Always check with your doctor before starting any new exercise regimen
© Copyright 2017 The Wright Stuff, Inc. Articles may only be redistributed in its unedited form. Written permission from The Wright Stuff, Inc. must be obtained to reprint or cite the information contained within this article.