I think most of us take this amazing organ for granted. We walk, do chores, run, workout, ski and sleep expecting that our heart will just “do their thing” 24/7. So, when I ran across this article, I thought … “wow! I had no idea…”
So, I’m sharing the info here:
Did you know that every minute a woman dies from heart disease? It is the number one killer of both women and men. More women die from heart disease than from breast cancer! Yet when we think about heart disease, we think about men having chest pains or massive heart attacks. For the most part, we never consider that a woman is just as susceptible to heart disease as a man and in some cases even more so.
A recent study in the Netherlands Heart Journal on “Gender differences in coronary heart disease” pointed out some significant differences between males and females. Both sexes share many of the same risk factors but some are higher risk in females. These risk factors include:
- Smoking – this is much more dangerous in women under 50 than men of the same age. Plus, the more you smoke the more damage is being done to the heart lining.
- Diabetes – the cardiac complication rate for females with diabetes is higher than in males. Additionally, most adults have Type II diabetes which for the most part is preventable or reversible with diet and lifestyle changes – think about the actors portraying both male and female Type II patients.
- Obesity – excess belly fat increases the risk of heart disease. Post-menopausal women who are obese have a higher risk than men of the same age.
- Pregnancy – high blood pressure and diabetes while pregnant increases the risk of heart disease in later life.
- Women are more likely than men to have symptoms of a heart attack that are unrelated to chest pain.
You can find additional information here:
The take away is, as always be aware of your own body, eliminate cardiac risk factors and talk with your PCP.
Watch for fat intake, start taking short walks before / after you eat your meals (even if you do this at dinnertime, it provides HUGE health benefits!) and STOP smoking (I know this is a tough one……do it for your kiddos…or you SO…do it for YOU!)