As people around the globe mark World Heart Day, doctors are warning that even young people need to take care by managing their lifestyles and taking care of their hearts.
The issue was highlighted in July this year by the death of Egyptian actor Amr Samir, who died of heart failure at the young age of 33.
A recent survey of social attitudes in the UAE found that many residents are concerned about cardiac illnesses. The survey – which was commissioned by Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi – queried over 1,000 UAE nationals and residents and found that 44 per cent of people feared dying of heart illness, with 76 per cent of respondents saying they believed people under the age of 40 should be more concerned.
Notably, people between the ages of 18 and 29 were significantly less likely to be aware of the role that family history can play in the development of heart disease; with over half – 51 per cent – saying they believed it isn’t a factor.
“The results show that heart disease is a real and present concern across the whole community in the UAE and the region, and that more people are looking for support in managing their heart health,” said Dr Rakesh M. Suri, chief of staff and chief of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery at Cleveland Clinic, Abu Dhabi.
Cardiologists are emphasising the importance of lifestyle choices when it comes to heart disease.
Statistics from Rashid Hospital show that one in every two patients who suffer from heart attacks are smokers. Heart attack cases are increasing at the hospital, with tobacco use topping the list of triggers.
Pumping it out
It pumps out 2 ounces of blood at every heartbeat, adding up to at least 2,500 gallons daily. The heart has the ability to beat over 3 billion times in a person’s life.
Can you beat that?
About 78 beats per minute, in fact. The male heart beats about 70 beats per minute. But before conception, male and female hearts beat at about the same rate.
Make a move
Cut back on driving and watching the tube. Data shows that those who owned both a car and TV had a 27 per cent higher risk of heart attack than those who owned neither.
Eat food like fish, fruits, vegetables, beans, high-fibre grains and olive oils rich with monounsaturated fats, fibre, and omega-3 fatty acids and limit eating cheese and sweets.