Cardiovascular diseases remain the biggest cause of deaths worldwide, though over the last two decades, cardiovascular mortality rates have declined in many high-income countries but have increased at an astonishingly fast rate in low- and middle-income countries. The percentage of premature deaths from cardiovascular disease range from 4% in high-income countries to 42% in low-income countries. More than 17 million people died from cardiovascular diseases in 2008. Each year, heart disease kills more Americans than cancer. In recent years, cardiovascular risk in women has been increasing and has killed more women than breast cancer. (PDAY) showed vascular injury accumulates from adolescence, making primary prevention efforts necessary from childhood.One of the major causes of heart disease is the reduction in the flow of blood due to arteries partially filled with cholesterol, a fatty substance that doesn't dissolve in blood and is produced by our bodies and also ingested via the food we eat. The web site of the American Heart Association (http://heart.org) explains the types of cholesterol and a fatty substance called Triglycerides.
By the time that heart problems are detected, the underlying cause (atherosclerosis) is usually quite advanced, having progressed for decades. There is therefore increased emphasis on preventing atherosclerosis by modifying risk factors, such as healthy eating,
In addition to changing HDL from "good" to "bad," the inhalation of emissions activates other components of oxidation, the early cell and tissue damage that causes inflammation, leading to hardening of the arteries, according to the research team, which included scientists from UCLA and other institutions.
"This study demonstrates that stroke risk is tightly aligned with coronary atherosclerosis, showing the closely related nature of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease," said Dirk M. Hermann, M.D., the study's lead investigator and professor of vascular neurology and dementia at the University Hospital Essen in Germany.
Cholesterol can't dissolve in the blood. It has to be transported to and from the cells by carriers called lipoproteins. Low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, is known as "bad" cholesterol. High-density lipoprotein, or HDL, is known as "good" cholesterol. These two types of lipids, along with triglycerides and Lp(a) cholesterol, make up your total cholesterol count, which can be determined through a blood test.
LDL (Bad) Cholesterol
When too much LDL (bad) cholesterol circulates in the blood, it can slowly build up in the inner walls of the arteries that feed the heart and brain. Together with other substances, it can form plaque, a thick, hard deposit that can narrow the arteries and make them less flexible. This condition is known as atherosclerosis. If a clot forms and blocks a narrowed artery, heart attack or stroke can result.
HDL (Good) Cholesterol
About one-fourth to one-third of blood cholesterol is carried by high-density lipoprotein (HDL). HDL cholesterol is known as "good" cholesterol, because high levels of HDL seem to protect against heart attack. Low levels of HDL (less than 40 mg/dL) also increase the risk of heart disease. Medical experts think that HDL tends to carry cholesterol away from the arteries and back to the liver, where it's passed from the body. Some experts believe that HDL removes excess cholesterol from arterial plaque, slowing its buildup.
TriglyceridesScientists are investigating the causes of heart disease. Here are reports on some of their research about heart and vascular disease.
Triglyceride is a form of fat made in the body. Elevated triglycerides can be due to overweight/obesity, physical inactivity, cigarette smoking, excess alcohol consumption and a diet very high in carbohydrates (60 percent of total calories or more). People with high triglycerides often have a high total cholesterol level, including a high LDL (bad) level and a low HDL (good) level. Many people with heart disease and/or diabetes also have high triglyceride levels.
Controlling blood pressure, serum cholesterol, and blood glucose may substantially reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke associated with being overweight or obese, according to a study from a worldwide research consortium led by a team from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH), Imperial College London, and the University of Sydney. Among the three factors, high blood pressure was found to pose the biggest risk for heart disease, and an even bigger risk for stroke, among overweight or obese participants.
Cancer treatment takes a toll on the hearts of child survivors, according to research presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2013.
Being overweight or obese are risk factors for myocardial infarction (heart attack) and ischemic heart disease (IHD) regardless of whether individuals also have the cluster of cardiovascular risk factors known as metabolic syndrome, which includes high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood sugar, according to a study published by JAMA Internal Medicine, a JAMA Network publication.
A new study published in the December issue of The American Journal of Medicine shows a significant association between low dietary fiber intake and cardiometabolic risks including metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular inflammation, and obesity. Surveillance data from 23,168 subjects in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 1999-2010 was used to examine the role dietary fiber plays in heart health.
Children with one or more high blood pressure readings were about three times more likely to develop the condition as adults, in a study presented at the American Heart Association High Blood Pressure Research Scientific Sessions 2013.
Obese children quadruple their risk and overweight children double their risk of developing high blood pressure in adulthood, according to a study presented at the American Heart Association High Blood Pressure Research Scientific Sessions 2013.
Researchers studied 1,256 Argentine premenopausal and menopausal women with and without type 2 diabetes, ages 19 to 84, who underwent ultrasound imaging to measure plaque in their carotid arteries, the major artery running down the neck. Regardless of their age, family history, smoking history, having high blood pressure or menopausal status, plaque buildup was more common among the 293 women with type 2 diabetes compared with the 963 who didn't have diabetes.
Dr Laukkanen said: "Sudden cardiac death (SCD) accounts for approximately 50% of deaths from coronary heart disease. SCD typically occurs shortly after the onset of symptoms, leaving little time for effective medical interventions, and most cases occur outside hospital with few or no early warning signs. Finding ways to identify individuals at elevated risk of SCD would allow early interventions on risk factors to be implemented." The current study investigated the impact of high leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) combined with cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) on risk of SCD. It included 2,656 randomly selected men aged 42 to 60 years from the Kuopio Ischemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study, a Finnish study of risk predictors for cardiovascular outcomes and SCD in the general population. Baseline cycle exercise test and risk factor assessment were performed in 1984-89. SCD was defined as death with cardiac origin within 24 hours after onset of symptoms.
Dr Min said: "Smoking is an established risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Studies have identified that quitting smoking can reduce heart attacks and death but have not examined the relationship of this salutary effect on the presence and severity of coronary artery disease (CAD). Our study aimed to find out what impact stopping smoking had on the risk of cardiovascular events, death and the severity of CAD." The prospective CONFIRM (Coronary CT Evaluation for Clinical Outcomes: An International Multicenter Study) registry of 13,372 patients from 9 countries in Europe, North America and East Asia examined the risk of major adverse cardiac events in 2,853 active smokers, 3,175 past smokers and 7,344 never smokers.
Dr Dohi said: "Smokers are twice as likely to have a heart attack as people who have never smoked. Quitting smoking is the most important thing people can do to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease. But until now, studies have not examined whether the increased risk caused by smoking is completely reversed after smoking cessation."
Sui says the caffeine in coffee can elevate heart rate as well as raise blood pressure and blood sugar levels. However, coffee is a major source of antioxidants, she says.
Children of obese and overweight women have a higher risk of early cardiovascular death as adults, finds a new study.
Resveratrol has received widespread attention as a possible anti-aging compound and is now widely available as a dietary supplement; much has been made of its role in explaining the cardiovascular health benefits of red wine, and other foods. But now, new research at The University of Copenhagen surprisingly suggests that eating a diet rich in antioxidants may actually counteract many of the health benefits of exercise, including reduced blood pressure and cholesterol.
A large 16-year study finds men who reported that they skipped breakfast had higher risk of heart attack or death from coronary heart disease. The timing of meals, whether it's missing a meal in the morning or eating a meal very late at night, may cause adverse metabolic effects that lead to coronary heart disease. Even after accounting for modest differences in diet, physical activity, smoking and other lifestyle factors, the association between skipping breakfast (or eating very late at night) and coronary heart disease persisted.