Heart disease is one of the leading cause of death occurring both in Men and Women around the world today.
What is Heart Disease?
Heart disease is characterized by narrowing of the blood vessels often as a result of fatty deposits or plaques clinging to the artery walls and blocking arteries (atherosclerosis), this ultimately leads to heart attack, pain or stroke. Various other conditions affecting the the heart muscles, valves and rhythm of the heart are also termed as heart disease.
Heart attack occurs when one of the coronary arteries that carries oxygen-rich blood to the heart is blocked by blood clot. This lack of oxygen supply to the heart damages or kills the heart cells
The heart is our body’s most vital organ and one of the best way to ensure its optimal function is by watching what you eat.
Certain foods are capable of increasing your risk of heart disease. Paying special attention to what you eat and how you eat are some of the most effective measures you can take to prevent heart disease.
Knowing the exact type of food to eat more of and those types of food to reduce its intake or completely avoid will go along way to boost your heart health.
Factors that Increases the Risk of Heart Disease.
The following factors are associated with the accumulation or build up of plaques or fatty deposits in the coronary arteries.
- Cigarette Smoking
- Lack of physical activity
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Diabetes especially when it is uncontrolled
- High LDL cholesterol level as a result of eating saturated fats and trans fat.
Types of Heart Disease
Heart failure, also known as congestive heart failure is a condition that occurs when the heart becomes weakened or damaged by the disease of the heart including heart attack.
This doesn’t mean that the heart stops beating, but it means the heart isn’t pumping blood as well as it should. The heart keeps working, but the need of the body for blood and oxygen isn’t being met. Heart failure often get worse if it’s left untreated.
This is described as the abnormal rhythm of the heart. Arrhythmia is capable of affecting how well the heart works as the heart’s ability to squeeze out enough blood to meet the body’s needs may be reduced.
Arrhythmias are of various kinds. The heart may beat too slow, too fast or irregularly.
Bradycardia occurs when the heart rate is less than 60 beats per minute while Tachycardia occurs when the heart rate is more than 100 beats per minute.
This is a condition that occurs when the flow of blood to a part of the heart is blocked by a blood clot. If this blood clot on the artery prevents the flow of blood completely to the heart, the part of the heart muscle supplied by that artery begins to die.
Victims often do survive their first heart attack and return to their normal lives. However, if you have an heart attack, it certainly means you do have to make some lifestyle changes.
Ischemic stroke: This is the most common type of stroke, it occurs when a blood vessel that carries blood to the brain gets blocked often as a result of blood clot. Soon enough, the blood supply to that part of brain is cut off and the brains cells there will die.
Ischemic stroke will result in the inability of the body to carry out some of its regular previous functions (e.g walking or talking) as before.
Hemorrhagic stroke: This type of stroke occurs when a blood vessel within the brain ruptures and there is bleeding in the brain. The most likely cause of hemorrhagic stroke is uncontrolled hypertension.
When too many brain cells dies after a stroke, some effects of the stroke are permanent since these dead cells are never replaced. However, some brain cells don’t die but temporarily stops working. This injured cells can repair themselves over time causing improvement in some body functioning such as improved strength, speech and memory.
Heart valve problems:
Heart valve problems are of various kinds.
Stenosis: This occurs when the heart valves don’t open well enough to allow the blood to flow through as it should,
Regurgitation: This occurs when the heart valves don’t close properly and blood is allowed to leak through.
Mitral Valve Prolapse: This is a condition that occurs when the valve leaflets bulge or prolapse back into the upper chamber. They may not close properly when this happens and hence allowing blood to flow backward through them
Heart Health Boosters: Foods That Prevent Heart Disease
Just as said earlier, what you eat goes a long way in either increasing your risk or preventing you from getting heart disease. Next are the kind of foods that boost your heart health and prevents heart disease.