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Does lifestyle affect the development of coronary heart disease?

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Introduction

Does lifestyle affect the development of coronary heart disease? The lifestyle of a person can seriously increase or decrease their chance of suffering from coronary heart disease. Coronary heart disease can affect anyone - men and women. It happens when arteries become narrowed through a process called Atherosclerosis. When this happens the blood and oxygen supply to the heart muscle is restricted, particularly when you exert yourself and the demands of the heart muscle. Atherosclerosis occurs when the inner lining of the artery wall becomes furred with atheroma made up of fatty deposits of cholesterol, cell waste, and other substances. Cholesterol is a fatty substance that is found in the bloodstream and in all the body's cells. The bodies cholesterol is measured in millimols per litre of blood. Only a small proportion of cholesterol in the body comes from the cholesterol in the food. It is made mostly in the liver from the saturated fat found in food. There are two main types of cholesterol: * Low Density Lipoproteins - (LDL). LDL carries cholesterol round the body and deposits it in the arteries, this can lead to fatty deposits developing in the arteries - a process called atheroscterus too much LDL cholesterol creates an increased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). ...read more.

Middle

This build up reduces the size of the lumen in the arteries and reduces the space at which blood can pass through. The increase the chance of thrombosis and the chance of the clot blocking the heart muscles oxygen supply. Also nicotine is a drug and it increases the heart rate which also increases the blood pressure which can increase the chance of a heart attack. This picture shows an example of a non-smokers artery and the artery of a smoker. It is clearly visible the damage that is caused by smoking on the artery lining and you can see the bulging and ruptures where fatty deposits have gathered. Picture from www.bhf.org.uk 2003 Picture of fatty deposits being removed from a 32year old smokers artery (coronary heart disease statistics 2003: British heart foundation public information publication) A persons diet is also a huge factor in the effects of heart disease. The main reason for this is the huge amount of saturated fats and cholesterol in food that is being eaten by people especially younger people. These fats are the fats that build up in your arteries and cause the plaque in you coronary artery which can lead to a heart attack. Also people who are overweight have a higher blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, and diabetes. ...read more.

Conclusion

So what causes coronary heart disease, smoking, alcohol, obesity, etc. or does everyone have an equal chance of having it. There is sufficient evidence to support that these factors increases the chance of having coronary heart disease. But there are also people who suffer from CHD when they have looked after themselves and have no hereditary problems which could have caused them to have the condition. But in most cases there is a factor which causes the person to have the condition. The main cause of CHD seems to be related with factors which cause an increase in fat content in the arteries and process which cause that fat to be held there by damaging the lumen wall and allowing fats to be deposited. An unhealthy diet and obesity lead to there being a high fat content in the arteries smoking and high blood pressure cause artery lining to be damaged and this proves these factors increase the chance or developing CHD. So I can conclude it I never too late or too early to reduce these damaging factors. Some risks can be controlled, while others can't. But CHD is multifactional, the more risk factors that you have, the greater risk of heart disease you have. Cutting down on all the factors you can is the only way you can help prevent it happening to you. ...read more.

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