Heart Disease

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It is the time of progress. The time of supercomputers, space shuttles, and many other wonders of technology. We have walked on the moon. We do our shopping at home via Internet navigation. We can not only talk with, but we can see the person we are talking to thousands of miles away. It is mankind's greatest hour. Yet sadly, it is also our time of dying. Strange that no matter how advanced our society has become, our nation's health hasn't caught up. After all, heart disease, also known as cardiovascular disease, is our nation's number one killer (Preventive Magazine Health Books p. 153). The most common, and most preventable, heart disease of all is coronary artery disease. This is caused when blockages develop in the blood vessels that provide oxygen-rich blood to the heart muscle. A more general term for any impairment of blood flow through the blood vessels is arteriosclerosis (Hale p.371). One of the most common symptoms is chest pain. When your heart muscle is not getting enough oxygen, it sends out a painful warning signal called angina pectoris(Hale p.372). Because your heart needs oxygen the most when it is working the hardest, angina is most likely to occur during exercise. And if the heart muscle is deprived of oxygen for long enough, it will die, resulting in a heart attack, or myocardial (heart muscle) infarction (tissue death) (Weisse p. 54). As you can see, preventing this disease should be a number one priority.The prevention of heart disease should begin in childhood and continue throughout life. But it is never too late to start; people of all ages can benefit greatly from diet, exercise, smoking cessation, and stress control to prevent heart disease. We should try to control our risk factors, such as cholesterol, high blood-pressure, stress control, smoking habits, lack of exercise, and dietary problems, or more specifically, obesity. There is no one way, or miracle cure, to control these factors, but common sense, as well as...
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