February is Heart Month in many countries around the world including the United States, Canada and Britain. Many organizations and government agencies have invested a great deal of resources to dedicate the month of February to creating awareness that heart disease is the number one disease-related killer and empower people to make a difference both in their own lives and those they care for. The issue of heart disease continues to grow and it is time that we all take action to make a difference.
To kick off Heart Month, February 1 is National Wear Red Day both in the United States and Canada, which is the day dedicated nationwide to creating awareness that Heart Disease is not just a leading killer, but number one for women and celebrate the many women who have taken steps to protect their hearts. Just in the United States, 1 in 4 women die of heart disease, while it’s 1 in 30 for breast cancer.
Resperate has also dedicated the month of February to Heart Month and to creating awareness of the significant relationship between high blood pressure and heart disease. Our mission is to provide you, our community, with all the necessary information about high blood pressure and the various ways it can easily be treated. It is our objective to empower you to now lower your blood pressure naturally and help those you care for to do the same. Lets make a difference together.
Empowerment starts with awareness and knowledge therefore, to start, we’ve provided you with following important information:
The Connection Between High Blood Pressure & Heart Disease:
Lets start with a brief description of heart disease as provided by the Mayo Clinic:
“Heart disease is a broad term used to describe a range of diseases that affect your heart. The various diseases that fall under the umbrella of heart disease include diseases of the blood vessels, such as coronary artery disease; heart rhythm problems (arrhythmias); heart infections; and heart defects one may be born with (congenital heart defects).”
“The term ‘heart disease’ is often used interchangeably with “cardiovascular disease.” Cardiovascular disease generally refers to conditions that involve narrowed or blocked blood vessels that can lead to a heart attack, chest pain (angina) or stroke. Other heart conditions, such as infections and conditions that affect your heart’s muscle, valves or beating rhythm, also are considered forms of heart disease.”
Just to give an example of one type of heart disease, coronary heart disease, the most common heart disease, is a disorder of the blood vessels of the heart that can lead to a heart attack. A heart attack happens when an artery becomes blocked, preventing oxygen and nutrients from getting to the heart.
Heart disease, in general, is a lifelong condition that you can live with as long as you make the necessary, simple lifestyle changes and follow your doctor’s recommendations. Procedures such as bypass surgery and angioplasty can help blood and oxygen flow to the heart more easily, but since the arteries are damaged, a person with heart disease may remain at risk of having a heart attack even after surgery. Also, the condition of the blood vessels can steadily worsen unless lifestyle changes are made to better your health.
Blood pressure is the force of blood against your artery walls as it circulates through your body. Blood pressure normally rises and falls throughout the day, but it can cause health problems if it stays high for a long time. When it is high, it stresses your body’s blood vessels, causing them to clog or weaken. This can lead to narrowing of the blood vessels making them more likely to become blocked from blood clots or bits of fatty material breaking off from the lining of the blood vessel wall. Having high blood, according to the Cleveland Clinic, raises your risk for heart disease and stroke, leading causes of death in the United States.
High Blood Pressure Leading Cause of Heart Disease:
There are many risk factors for heart disease: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, prediabetes, obesity, smoking, lack of exercise, unhealthy diet and stress. Of all the risk factors, high blood pressure (hypertension) is a leading cause of heart (Cardiovascular) disease, affecting approximately 1 billion individuals worldwide as reported by the Science Daily. High blood pressure is estimated to cause 7.5 million deaths, about 12.8% of the total of all disease related deaths worldwide according the World Health Organization. Fortunately for all of us, controlling high blood pressure can be easy and simple. Together, we can lower blood pressure and reduce heart disease by putting our hearts on our mind and taking care of ourselves.
Taking good care of your heart means controlling your risk factors for heart disease. Having just one risk factor increases your risk of developing heart disease, and your risk increases with each added risk factor. That said, it does not mean if you only have one risk factor and if that factor poses less of an issue than the other factors, you are free of heart disease risks. It is important to think HEART and make lifestyle changes to reduce all risk factors.
The Statistics Show:
- 970 million people worldwide have high blood pressure (HBP)
- HPB is one of the most significant causes of premature death worldwide and the problem is growing.
- It is estimated that by 2025, there will be 1.56 billion adults living with HBP
- HBP accounts for an estimated 54% of all strokes and 47% of all ischemic heart disease events globally. AmericanCollege of Cardiology.
- HBP is quantitatively the most important risk factor for premature cardiovascular disease, being more common than cigarette smoking, dyslipidemia, and diabetes.
- HBP increases the risk for a variety of cardiovascular diseases, including stroke, coronary artery disease, heart failure, and peripheral vascular disease.
- Coronary disease in men and stroke in women are the principal first cardiovascular events noted after hypertension onset, as observed from data from the Framingham Heart Study.
- Uncontrolled HBP increases the risk of heart failure twofold among men and threefold among women, and the risk of heart failure increases as HBP worsens.
- Data from clinical trials conducted in the United States and other countries show, according to World Hypertension League, that controlling HBP can reduce the incidence of heart Failure by as much as 55%.
- At least 70 million Americans, or nearly 1-in-3 adults, are estimated to have HBP.
- Less than 50% of Americans have their blood pressure under control.
- 69% of people who have a first heart attack, 77% of people who have a first stroke, and 74% of people with chronic heart failure have HBP
- HBP is also a major risk factor for kidney disease.
- Less than half (46%) of people with HBP have their condition under control.
- About 1 in 5 (20.4%) U.S. adults with HBP don’t know that they have it.
- Almost 30% of American adults have prehypertension—blood pressure numbers that are higher than normal, but not yet in the HBP range. Prehypertension raises your risk of developing HBP.
High Blood Pressure Symptoms:
High blood pressure often does not have any symptoms and therefore is known as the “silent killer”. In order to assure yourself that your blood pressure is normal, it’s advised to have your blood pressure measured by a doctor or health professional on a regular basis. If you have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, it is advised to monitor your blood pressure at home and to chart your readings, which you can later discuss with your health care provider during your next check up.
Managing High Blood Pressure Can be Simple:
Managing your high blood pressure requires first working with your doctor to determine what is the best treatment and discuss various options and combinations of solutions: medication, supplements, lifestyle changes and Resperate. Second, it is important to follow all your doctors recommendation and speak openly with your doctor about how you feel. Third, make all the relevant lifestyle changes listed below:
- Quit smoking
- Lose weight if you are overweight
- Exercise regularly
- Eat a well-balanced, nutritious meals that are low in fat, cholesterol, and salt, and high in fresh fruits and vegetables. Your diet is an important part of blood pressure control. Using the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) eating plan and limiting sodium (salt) help control blood pressure. Ask your doctor to refer you to a dietitian for specific dietary guidelines.
- Limit alcohol to no more than one ounce of pure alcohol or two drinks per day
For more information about high blood pressure, heart disease and treatments read through our many sources for this summary:
- The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
- American Heart Association
- Science Daily
- World Health Organization
- Up To Date
- World Hypertension League
- World Heart Foundation
- Center for Disease Control
- Cleveland Clinic
- Health Land, Time Magazine
- American College of Cardiology