Take This To Heart: Most Women Who Die Of Heart Disease Didn’t Know They Had It

Historically, heart disease has been recognized as the number one cause of death in men. However, over the years, the myth that cardiovascular disease (CVD) is mainly a problem for men has been reviewed, revised and revamped.

 

Women Are 3X’s More Likely To Die After Heart Attack Than Men Are

 The fact is that CVD is the leading killer of both men and women, and actually claiming more female lives than all forms of cancer combined. Even more disconcerting is the fact the “64% of women who die suddenly from a heart attack were previously unaware that they had cardiovascular disease.” And, based on large studies published earlier this year, women are up to three times more likely to die after a heart attack than men are largely due to unequal care and treatment.

 

May Could Become Women’s Heart Health Month

So, even though American Heart Month, which happened in February was overshadowed by a global pandemic, as was Mother’s Day, I would like to suggest turning your attention to heart health – your own or that of your mother and the other women who play important roles in your life. It could be a sister, an aunt or a good friend.

 

10 Helpful Tips For Women’s Heart Health

This year is particularly stressful for everyone, but we all know that women take on the greater burdens and they tend to neglect their own health putting the health and well-being of their families first. So, it’s important that women become advocates for optimal cardiovascular care. Dr. Amy Doneen, who has co-founded the BaleDoneen Method offers her top ten prevention tips for women’s heart health, which I am providing brief excerpts of below (you can read the full article at http://theheartattackandstrokepreventioncenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/v2_dramy_august.pdf):

 

  1. Get educated – Every 43 seconds someone in the U.S. has a heart attack, and on average, one American dies from a stroke every four minutes. However, all heart attacks and strokes are potentially preventable.
  2. Move more – Exercise has such powerful mental and physical benefits that it’s been called “the ultimate wonder drug.” For people with genetic risk for heart attack, exercise has been shown in a new study to lower that risk by 50%.
  3. Follow a healthy lifestyle – An optimal lifestyle reduces CVD and stroke risk by up to 90%. Take excellent care of your heart by a) shaking the sugar habit and add more fruit and vegetables to your diet; b) maintain a healthy weight; and c) look for ways to tame tension by practicing mindfulness and other relaxing activities.
  4. No nicotine – Every year, secondhand smoke causes more than 8,000 deaths from stroke, while smoking and other kinds of nicotine use, such as vaping or chewing tobacco cuses on in three deaths from CVD.
  5. Check blood pressure – Sixty-seven-million Americans – about one-in-three adults – have high blood pressure and 70 million have pre-hypertension. Although elevated blood pressure is the leading risk for stroke and a major contribution to heart disease, many people who have it aren’t aware of their condition.
  6. Get checked for ALL dangerous types of cholesterol – most patients assume that the standard cholesterol test known as a “lipid profile” or “coronary risk panel” checks for all forms of dangerous cholesterol. However, most healthcare providers don’t test patients for a common inherited-cholesterol disorder. It’s a $20 test that, if results are normal, only needs to be done once in a lifetime.
  7. Get checked for pre-diabetes – Insulin Resistance (IR) is the underlying cause of 70% of heart attacks. It is a common diagnosis, but often comes too late. BaleDoneen and other studies show that the most accurate screening is the 2-hour oral glucose tolerance test. Rated as “the gold standard” in accuracy by the American Diabetes Association, this test is covered by almost every health plan.
  8. Get dental care at least twice a year – If you haven’t seen your dentil lately, here’s some powerful motivation: Keeping your gums healthy could help you avoid a heart attack! Conversely, having periodontal disease due to certain high-risk oral bacteria can actually cause cardiovascular disease.
  9. Sleep well – Regardless of other risk factors, people who don’t sleep enough face an increased threat of CVD. In a study of about 3,00 people over the age of 45, those who snoozed fewer than 6 hours a night were twice as likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke.
  10. Save a life – tell a friend and teach a friend what you learned here. You could save a life.