Heart Disease Q & A
What is the Connection Between High Blood Pressure (Hypertension) and Heart Disease?
High blood pressure is the result of tightening of the arteries in the heart that are responsible for the movement of blood. When this happens, your heart has to work harder to pump blood because of the smaller space. This causes excess pressure to build up on the artery walls, which weakens them making them more susceptible to heart disease.
How are Smoking and Heart Disease Linked?
Smoking can cause damage to the lining of blood vessels, increase fatty deposits in the arteries, increase blood clotting, adversely affects blood lipid levels, and promotes coronary artery spasm. Nicotine will also speed up the heart rate and raise blood pressure which can be linked to heart disease.
Does Diet Play a Part in the Development of Heart Disease?
Diet can largely impact health making a person more susceptible to getting heart disease. Diets high in animal fat and alcohol have been shown to increase the risk of heart disease. Lowering your intake of fat and salt in your diet and introducing whole grains and green leafy vegetables will help to prevent heart disease.
How is Coronary Heart Disease Diagnosed?
There are a number of ways your doctor can diagnose coronary heart disease. This can involve the use of a coronary angiogram which uses an x-ray to see how the blood flows through your heart and show any signs of developing atherosclerosis. An electrocardiogram is another test that can be used. This test records the electrical activity of your heart and measures the rate and regularity of heartbeats, the size and position of the heart chambers, the presence of any damage to the heart, and the effects of drugs or devices used to regulate the heart. It is a non-invasive procedure.