What is Heart Disease?
Heart disease is a term used to describe a range of diseases that affect your heart. Diseases that fall under the definition of heart disease include coronary artery disease; cardiac arrest, heart infections and heart defects you’re born with.
What’s Your Heart Disease Risk?
Unfortunately there’s no definitive measurement to gauge the likelihood of suffering a cardiac emergency – reducing your heart disease risk is your best strategy. Steps to take include regular checkups, screening for heart disease, and living a heart-healthy lifestyle.
It is a little known fact that heart disease accounts for 20 percent of all Canadian deaths and 90 percent of Canadians have at least one of the following risk factors:
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- High blood cholesterol
- Being overweight
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Physical inactivity
For more information on risk factors, we recommend you assess yourself with the H&S Risk Calculator – a personalized tool to help you find out what’s putting you at risk.
Heart Disease Outlook
With obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes on the rise, it is expected that the incidence of heart disease and stroke will swell in upcoming generations. Lifestyle changes have led to sedentary work environments, poor diets, high sodium intake and increased stress which all contribute to heart disease.
Heart Disease Facts
- Every day, heart disease and stroke lead to nearly 1,000 hospital visits
- Heart disease and stroke rob Canadians of nearly 250,000 potential years of life
- Heart disease and stroke kills more women than men, a fact that many women may not realize
- Today, less than 10% of children meet recommended physical activity guidelines and less than half eat the recommended fruit and vegetables for optimum health
The most important line of defense is to adopt a heart-healthy lifestyle that can guard against heart disease before it strikes.