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7 "Dirty Words" about Heart Disease 

 


Diet

– fat, sugar and foods high in cholesterol are known to contribute to heart disease; diabetes (also diet related) also damages the heart and blood vessels.

Genetics

– African Americans, Hispanics, native Americans all have higher rates of high blood pressure and heart disease

Stress

– working too much, dramatic personal lives, worrying, depression; also feeding stress with too much alcohol and other drugs (Carlin reportedly went through drug and alcohol rehab in 2004)

Smoking

– constricts blood vessels and strains the heart and lungs

Inactivity

– the heart is a muscle that needs to be exercised; even moderate activity is helpful, and losing 10 pounds can reduce your cardiac risk

High blood pressure

– leads to undue stress on a variety of organs, including the heart; combined with other risk factors it increases the chance of a heart attack many times

Denial

– saying “it won’t happen to me,” without changing your lifestyle, guarantees you won’t see a decrease in your risk

Courtesy of the Carolina Cardiovascular Biology Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine.