Heart disease is a serious health condition that affects millions of people globally. Heart disease is a general term that encompasses a range of conditions that affect the heart. The Irish Heart Foundation and the Health Service Executive (HSE) list heart disease as one of the leading causes of death and disability in Ireland.
Types of Heart Disease
There are several types of heart disease, including coronary heart disease, heart attack, heart failure, and arrhythmias. Each type affects the heart in different ways and can have different symptoms. Some of the common symptoms of heart disease include chest pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, and an irregular heartbeat.
Risk factors for heart disease include high blood pressure, smoking, high cholesterol levels, obesity, lack of physical activity, unhealthy diet, and family history of heart disease. It is important to identify these risk factors and take steps to manage them to reduce the risk of developing heart disease.
Reduce the Risk
To reduce the risk of heart disease, it is important to make lifestyle changes that can help to lower these risk factors. The following preventative measures are recommended:
- Exercise regularly: Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week, such as brisk walking or cycling.
- Eat a healthy diet: Focus on eating plenty of fruit, vegetables, and whole grains, while limiting your intake of saturated fat, sugar, and salt.
- Quit smoking: Smoking is one of the leading causes of heart disease, and quitting can greatly reduce your risk.
- Control your weight: Maintaining a healthy weight can help to lower your blood pressure and reduce your risk of heart disease.
- Limit alcohol consumption: Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can increase your blood pressure and increase your risk of heart disease.
- Monitor your blood pressure and cholesterol levels: Regular monitoring of these levels can help to identify any changes that may increase your risk of heart disease.
Treatment for heart disease varies depending on the type and severity of the condition. Options can include medication, surgery, and lifestyle changes. Your local LloydsPharmacy has highly trained and experienced colleagues who are happy to assist with any heart health advice you may need.