Could you be at risk for developing heart disease? A visit to your Arlington, TX, cardiologist, Dr. Atif Sohail of Heart & Sleep Clinics of America, will help you determine if you need to make a few lifestyle changes or take medication to control an underlying condition, like high blood pressure or high cholesterol.
Factors that may raise your risk of heart disease
These risk factors could increase your chances of developing heart disease:
- High Cholesterol: High cholesterol narrows your arteries due to the build-up of a waxy substance called plaque. The build-up reduces the amount of blood and oxygen that reaches your heart.
- High Blood Pressure: High blood pressure damages and weakens your blood vessels, increases stress on your heart and makes it easier for plaque to accumulate. Exercising more often and changing your diet may lower your blood pressure naturally. If not, your Arlington, TX, heart doctor can prescribe medication that lowers your pressure and helps reduce your heart disease risk.
- Diabetes: High blood sugar can damage your blood vessels. Nerve damage, a consequence of uncontrolled diabetes, may also affect the nerves responsible for normal heart function.
- Smoking: Smoking increases plaque build-up, makes your blood thicker and more likely to clot. It can also cause an irregular heart rhythm and damage your blood vessels.
- Obesity: Increased body fat can be a risk factor for heart disease. If you're overweight or obese, your heart must work harder than usual.
- Sedentary Lifestyle: Regular exercise strengthens your heart, lowers your blood pressure, and helps you control your blood sugar. If you're a couch potato, you may be more likely to develop heart disease.
- Unhealthy Diet: Eating fatty, greasy, processed, sugary, or high-carbohydrate foods may also increase your heart disease risk. Avoiding or limiting these foods and choosing low-fat dairy products, lean meats, and poultry, fish, vegetables, fruits, and high-grains instead offers a simple way to protect your heart.
- Other Factors: You may be more likely to develop heart disease if someone else in your family has had it or if you have sleep apnea, gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD), drink too much alcohol,l or take certain medications.
Protect your heart health and reduce your risk of heart disease with a visit to the cardiology office in Arlington, TX. Call (817) 419-7220 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Sohail of Heart & Sleep Clinics of America.