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7 things you’re doing in your 20s and 30s that can increase your risk of a heart attack

Updated on:29 September 2020, 16:21pm IST
Heart attacks and heart disease are often considered to be problems of older age. But here’s some news: your lifestyle right now can predict your risk of heart attack in the future.
Dr Vivek Kumar
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Adopt a healthy lifestyle now and your heart will thank you for it. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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You might think that if your are in your 20s or 30s, you have plenty of time to start thinking about your heart health. However, research shows that heart attacks among younger people, especially women are increasing today.

Taking care of your heart health in your 20s and 30 does not only protect your heart, but also helps in taking care of it in the long run. Young individuals, who are either pursuing higher studies or are working, are under stress to perform due to peer pressure. This mental strain can lead to unhealthy and erratic food habits. Add to that, long hours on the desk, not exercising, and erratic sleep pattern—and you’re just adding fuel to the fire.

Young women might also use oral contraceptive pills to avoid pregnancy. This makes them more prone to developing certain medical conditions which can increase their risk of a heart attack.

In fact, here are all the risk factors for heart disease that begin in your 20s and 30s, keeping a lid on which can give you good heart health later in life:

1. Increased stress
Stress is inevitable when one is young. However, what is in our control is how we react to it. If we take too much stress it could lead to various health issues. Hence, you should keep a positive attitude to keep your heart healthy.

2. High cholesterol
Erratic and unhealthy diet may cause elevated cholesterol levels which can increase our chances of a heart disease and stroke. Obesity, lack of exercise, and too much sugar in your diet can be the cause of a stroke in 20s and 30s. Lifestyle and dietary changes can keep cholesterol levels under control.

Keep your heart happy! Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

Also, read: 5 mistakes you’re making during the pandemic that can affect your heart health

3. High blood pressure
Unhealthy lifestyle can cause high blood pressure. Young adults, with even slightly above normal blood pressure, tend to have heart-related problems later in their life. Therefore, you need to check your blood pressure at least once a year. If the blood pressure is even slightly high a consultation with the doctor should be considered.

4. Smoking
Mental stress either due to studies or job can induce a habit of smoking. Apart from causing breathing problems and lung cancer, smokers are more likely to have a heart attack than non-smokers.

5. Obesity
Obesity rates amongst adults in their 20s and 30s are rising. Obesity increases the chances of a heart attack and it could lead to premature death. Therefore, it is best to choose a healthy diet over an unhealthy one. You should include nutrient-rich foods like vegetables, food, whole grains, and poultry to ensure they have a healthy diet.

 

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Things you’re doing in your 20s and 30s that increase your risk of a heart attack. (By Dr Vivek Kumar, Additional Director, Interventional Cardiology, @fortis.healthcare ) Stress Stress is inevitable when one is young. However, what is in our control is how we react to it. If we take too much stress it could lead to various health issues. Hence, one should keep a positive attitude to keep your heart healthy. High cholesterol Erratic and unhealthy diet may cause elevated cholesterol levels which may increase our chances of a heart disease and a stroke. Obesity, lack of exercise and too much sugar in one’s diet can be the cause of a stroke in 20s and 30s. High blood pressure Unhealthy lifestyle may cause high blood pressure. Young adult with even slightly above normal blood pressure tends to have heart related problems later in their life. Therefore, one needs to check their blood pressure at least once a year. Smoking Mental stress either due to studies or job can induce habit of smoking. Apart from causing breathing problems and lung cancer, smoking can lead to hight chance of heart attack. Obesity Obesity increases the chances of a heart attack and it could lead to premature death. One should include nutrient rich foods like vegetables, food, whole grains, poultry, etc. to ensure they have a healthy diet. Birth control choices Oral contraceptives may increase our blood pressure. It may not be an issue for some people. However, when someone has a history of heart diseases in their family then it could raise a problem for them. Substance abuse Peer pressure and various stresses in a young individual may induce them to try drugs and eventually get addicted. Drugs are known to cause various heart diseases. #worldheartday #heartattack #heart #wellnessjourney #wellnessgoals #wellnesscoach #wellnesscoach #wellness #positivequotes #RechargeYourHeart #healthylifestyle #RechargeYourHeart #healthshots #worldheartday2020 #mondaymotivation #mondayvibes #mondaymood # #mondayinspiration #stressrelief #cholestrol #obesity #smokingkills #bloodpressure #motivationalquotes #stressrelief #positivemindset #dailyquotes #heartattack #healthylifestyle #health

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6. Birth control pills
Oral contraceptives can increase your blood pressure. It may not be an issue for some people. However, when someone has a history of heart diseases in their family, then it can raise a problem for them.

7. Avoiding regular health check ups
Getting cholesterol levels and blood pressure checked regularly can help prevent heart diseases to a great extent. Therefore, it is best to get them checked on a regular basis.

To have a healthy heart, you should make healthy life choices and choose a primary care doctor who can help whenever needed. If you take these steps your heart will thank you later in life for taking good care of it. Eating right and exercising should be an essential part of your daily routine to protect your heart.

Dr Vivek Kumar Dr Vivek Kumar

Dr Vivek Kumar is the additional director, Interventional Cardiology, Fortis Escorts Heart Institute, Okhla, New Delhi.