Can Heart Disease Be Prevented?

Heart disease is the #1 killer of men AND women. How can it be prevented and can it be reversed?

In this video, Dr. Prerana Manohar of the Heart and Wellness Institute and other panelists discuss the answers to these questions.


About 85-90% of heart disease is preventable. Many things a person does in the course of a day affects the heart- what is eaten, habits formed (from exercise to smoking), quality of sleep, the environment, and stress. These heart health factors can be controlled and making changes in the necessary areas can certainly prevent and even reverse heart disease and the underlying symptoms.

Experts agree diet plays a very important role in heart, health. “Diet” in this case, simply means what is eaten, not restricting calories. Issues such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes all increase a person’s risk of heart disease. Blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, and other food related health issues will be controlled if healthy diet choices are made and the risk of heart disease as a result will be diminished.

Exercise is also very important in having a healthy heart. Dr. Manohar recommends a half hour of exercise every day, even if it is just a brisk walk. And if that’s not feasible, at least a half hour four to five times a week is recommended. For every half hour of exercise done, the risk of heart disease is lowered by 10%.

The quality of sleep a person gets is also an important factor in preventing heart disease. Repeated low oxygen levels, as seen with sleep apnea, have a significant effect on the heart and can even lead to congestive heart failure.

Not only do smoking and second hand smoke have a detrimental effect on the heart, but recent studies have shown a correlation between smog and pollution and the occurrence of coronary artery disease. This is why it is important to NOT smoke, to try and stay away from second hand smoke, and to protect the environment.

Dr. Manohar suggests preventing heart disease and reducing risk by meeting with one’s primary care physician to assess risk and make a plan of action. This should include eating right, exercising regularly, getting good quality sleep, and getting rid of bad habits. Then, the risk factors, plan of action, and actions taken should be reassessed regularly. This action plan and regular assessment will contribute to a healthier heart.

With some lifestyle changes and continuous healthy choices, heart disease risk CAN be reduced and even reversed.

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