Debunking Common Heart Disease Myths
Heart disease, or cardiovascular disease, can actually refer to many different conditions, including coronary artery disease, congenital heart defects, and arrhythmias. Heart disease is often preventable by leading a healthy lifestyle. Make good decisions for your heart health by becoming an informed patient. Keep reading to learn the truth behind some common myths about heart disease:
Myth: It Only Affects Seniors
Heart disease can affect people of all ages, from children to senior citizens. Children may have congenital heart defects, such as ventricular septal defects (VSD) or infections of the heart. It’s also possible for adults in their 30’s and 40’s to suffer from heart attacks—particularly if they ate an unhealthy diet and failed to exercise as children. Cardiologists have noted a disturbing trend of younger adults suffering from preventable heart problems.
Myth: The Symptoms Are Obvious
High blood pressure is known as “the silent killer” for a good reason; the only way to know if you have hypertension is to undergo a screening. The same holds true for high cholesterol, and both of these problems elevate the risk of heart disease. Cardiologists recommend aiming for a blood pressure of 120/80 and a total cholesterol level of less than 200 mg/dL.
Myth: Exercise Should Be Avoided After a Heart Attack
If you’ve had a heart attack, you shouldn’t try jogging home from the clinic. That said, it is best to start a cardiologist-approved exercise plan as soon as possible to improve your heart health and increase your longevity. The American Heart Association recommends getting a minimum of two and a half hours of moderate intensity exercise every week .
Myth: Fit People Don’t Need to Worry
Exercising regularly and eating a healthy diet does indeed decrease your risk of heart disease and improve your overall health. However, there are other risk factors for heart disease you can control. For example, you should quit smoking and limit alcohol consumption, if applicable, and undergo screenings for cholesterol and blood pressure.
Take advantage of the free heart failure education classes available at Cardiac Solutions. We also offer a cholesterol management program, which includes cholesterol screening, patient education, and lifestyle recommendations. Call us at (623) 876-8816 to enroll at one of our locations in Peoria, Glendale, Avondale, or Sun City West.