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Are You at Risk?

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Most of us are so busy in our lives that we don't even realize if we are putting our health at risk for deadly conditions like heart disease. More than 60 percent of women consider breast cancer as their biggest health threat but you might not know that heart disease is the leading cause of death in women. Heart disease kills around a half million women in the United States every year.

So, what puts a woman at risk for heart disease? Well, there are a number of factors that can increase your chances of developing heart disease.

* Menopause:

When a woman reaches menopause, she has an increased risk of developing heart disease. According to various researchers, the increased risk for heart disease is possibly associated with a drop in estrogen that happens during menopause. Until recently, it was thought that hormone therapy could help reduce this risk for menopausal women.

* Cholesterol:

Cholesterol is found in a variety of foods and is vital to your body. However, an excess of cholesterol in your body can block arteries, increasing your risk of developing heart disease.

* Hypertension:

Hypertension or high blood pressure makes your heart work harder than usual and puts additional stress on the heart muscle. Moreover, high blood pressure damages the walls of blood vessels and increases their chances of getting clogged.

* Diabetes:

Women with diabetes are at an increased risk of heart disease because their level of blood sugar is higher than normal. High levels of sugar in the blood can damage the arteries supplying blood to the heart

* Being Overweight:

If you have excess body weight, you are at a higher risk of developing heart disease. Losing some extra pounds can help you reduce the risk.

* Physical inactivity:

Women who are inactive are twice as likely to develop heart disease as active women. To prevent heart disease, it is important that you do some physical activity such as yoga or walking at least thirty minutes a day, 4-6 times a week.

* Family history:

If any of your blood relatives have been diagnosed with heart disease, you are more likely to develop it too.

The way we live every day affects our heart. A lifestyle that is unhealthy can lead to a stroke or heart attack. Therefore, it is very important to make lifestyle changes by eating right and being physically active. Don't forget to spend thirty minutes of your day in activities such as yoga, swimming, walking and exercising to help your heart remain healthy.



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