Heart Disease Risk Calculator

A heart disease risk calculator can tell you how likely you are to develop the disease.

The most common cause of heart disease is an unhealthy lifestyle. This means the disease can easily be prevented.

Once you develop heart disease, you can control the condition, and sometimes even reverse it, with just a few lifestyle changes.   

There are some causes of heart disease that you can't control, such as heredity and birth defects, but a healthy lifestyle can prevent the disease from progressing.

Being obese and carrying excess body fat is a risk factor for heart disease

If You Are At Risk...

Being at risk doesn't necessarily mean you will develop heart disease. It just means that chances are quite high that you will.

Since most of the causes are within your control, you can greatly reduce your risk.

A heart disease risk calculator is very simple to use. You just enter your information and you will see the results instantly.

Online risk calculators usually ask:

  • Your age and gender
  • Your smoking and drinking habits
  • Your height and weight
  • Your level of activity
  • Family health history
  • Blood pressure
  • Cholesterol levels

Once you get the results, you will be given suggestions on what you can do to lower your risk, and how much lower your risk will be with each change.

For example, quitting smoking could cut your risk in half.

Lifestyle Changes

If you smoke, that should be the first thing you change. Smoking can cause all sorts of health problems and diseases. The sooner you quit, the better.

There are a large variety of methods, products and medications that can help. Some people can quit "cold turkey". This means without any help.

Just suddenly stopping a habit you might have had for many years is not easy. Your body will go through withdrawal pains, and the cravings are more than many people can handle. That is why most people never succeed on their first attempt.

Stop smoking aids help with the cravings. These come as gum, lozenges or patches. They contain a small amount of nicotine to help wean you off the addiction. Prescription medications help control withdrawal pains. Methods like meditation and laser treatment have been proven very successful for many people.

Lifestyle choices, including alcohol consumption, have an impact on heart disease rates

If you drink, you should cut down. A few drinks a week is actually good for your heart, especially if you drink red wine. More than one or two drinks per day increases your risk. The more you drink in one day, the more your risk of developing heart disease increases.

Change your diet. You should limit foods that contain "bad" fats and cholesterol. These can turn into plaque and clog your arteries. Over time, this can cause your arteries to rupture, which leads to a blood clot.

Cut down on red meat, and instead of eating foods high in animal fat, switch to foods with monounsaturated fats. Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, and whole grain foods.

Eating healthily doesn't have to be bland or boring. There are all sorts of fresh herbs and spices you can use to flavor your food, without adding any extra salt. 

Drink plenty of fresh, clean water. Water cleans your system. It helps your liver flush out toxins, and helps curb your appetite, making it easier for you to maintain a healthy weight.

Start exercising regularly. Exercise strengthens your heart and improves your circulation. It can also help to relieve stress and help you control your blood pressure.

No Drastic Changes Required

These are not drastic changes, but they can make a drastic change in your health.

If you feel this is too much to take on all at once, then make changes slowly. You could start by replacing between meal snacks with fruit or vegetables.

Start your exercise program by walking around the block or to the park. The fresh air will temporarily reduce your cravings for alcohol and cigarettes.

Making these changes in your life will greatly reduce your risk of developing heart disease. However, you should still discuss the results of the heart disease risk calculator with your doctor.

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