World Heart Day 2019: my heart, your heart | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 29, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, September 29, 2019

World Heart Day 2019: my heart, your heart

World Heart Day 2019 focuses on creating a global community of heart heroes. People from all walks of life who are acting now to live longer, better, heart-healthy lives by making a promise. From professionals involved in cutting-edge cardiology research and heart healthcare to everyday people looking after their and their loved ones’ hearts - we can all be heart heroes.

Some things we cannot control, but several key risk factors for heart disease can be controlled through lifestyle choices. Some things about our bodies were passed on to us by our parents through genetics. Having a family member with certain health problems can increase your risk for having those conditions too. The good news is, even though some problems can be passed on from your parents, making healthy choices can decrease your chances of developing some diseases. Here are some things you can work on to lower your odds of getting heart disease: 

Do not smoke: Cigarettes are very bad for your health. Smoking can cause heart disease and cancer. Over time, cigarette smoke damage your heart and blood vessels by narrowing it and making it hard for blood to deliver oxygen and nutrients to your organs. To keep your heart healthy quitting smoking is very important.

Do not miss antihypertension medicine: People whose blood pressure is above a normal range are said to have high blood pressure, or hypertension. High blood pressure has no warning signals, so everyone should have their blood pressure checked regularly. High blood pressure can be reduced by increasing physical activity, making healthy food choices and staying a healthy weight. If you stop medicine without doctor’s advice it may cause stroke, heart attack or kidney disease.

Exercise regularly: Getting some regular, daily exercise can reduce your risk of heart disease. Physical activity can help you control your weight and reduce your chances of developing other conditions that may put a strain on your heart, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes.

Keep your cholesterol in check: Cholesterol always is trying to harm your blood vessels. Too much cholesterol in the blood raises the risk for heart disease. By eating foods low in fat and cholesterol, we can reduce the amount of bad cholesterol in our bodies. Adults should generally have their cholesterol measured at least once every year starting at age 40.

Maintain a healthy weight: Being overweight is not about how you look outside. It can lead to serious problems inside like high blood cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes. Eat right and get physically active to maintain a healthy weight!

Take better care of diabetes: Diabetes can cause problems for the body and increase the risk for heart disease. Being overweight and physical inactivity are two things that cause type 2 diabetes. Depending on your risk factors, such as being overweight or having a family history of diabetes, your doctor may recommend early screening for diabetes.

Healthy lifestyle choices will keep your heart healthy and decreases the chances of heart diseases significantly.


The writer works at the Department of Cardiology at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University, Dhaka. Email:

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