UNDERSTANDING Risk Factors Of Cardiovascular Disease
There are several factors that can increase one’s risk of developing cardiovascular disease. These include:
- Family History: certain ethnicities have an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. The reason behind this is not fully understood.However it is thought to be due to the lifestyle factors of these ethnic groups and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes.
- Diabetes: This is a disorder that is characterised by high blood glucose levels due to dysfunction in insulin(the blood glucose regulating hormone). There are two types: type 1 and type 2. In type 1, the hormone is not produced and thus blood glucose levels are not lowered sufficiently. In type 2 diabetes, the sensitivity to insulin is reduced. Type 2 maybe controlled by lifestyle factors such as dietary changes and physical activity. While type 1 may not be treated without the administration of insulin.
- Stress: Some stress can be good for the body. However, chronic stress can be damaging. This can not only increase our chances of engaging in unhealthy habits but can also raise blood pressure.
- Blood pressure: High pressure increase the rate at which blood vessels build up fatty deposits. This increases the chance of suffering from stroke or heart attack.
- Body weight: The Body Mass Index (BMI) is an approximation of the amount of body fat in the body. A high BMI increases the risk of cardiovascular disease. Also a high waist size increases the risk of ill health.