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Heart Health

Heart Facts

Heart Facts

  • Research has shown that smoking and avoiding exercise can raise the chances of sudden cardiac arrest by 12%.
  • Consuming fried food often (4-6 times a week) increases your likelihood of developing coronary artery disease by 23%.
  • 1 in 4 Singaporeans suffer from Hypertension.  
  • Around 1 in 20 Singaporeans suffer from Heart Failure.

Diabetes

  • Diabetes is one of the big four diseases in Singapore. It is estimated that 1 in 7 adults aged 18 to 69 years old will have diabetes by 2030 (Ministry of Health).
  • 2 in 5 stroke cases has diabetes.
  • 2 in 3 new kidney failure cases are due to diabetes.
  • 1 in 2 heart attack cases has diabetes.

Stroke

  • Nearly 1/3 of deaths in Singapore is due to heart disease or stroke. (Singapore Heart Foundation)
  • Stroke is the third most common cause of deaths in the world.
  • People with Atrial Fibrillation are 5 times more likely to suffer from a stroke.

Cholesterol

  • 1 in 5 Singaporeans has high cholesterol

  • 90% of cardiovascular diseases such as heart attacks and strokes can be prevented with the adoption of healthy lifestyle habits.
  • Keep blood pressure in healthy levels of 130/80mm Hg.
  • Keep your cholesterol level at <200 mg/dl. Average adult should maintain a HDL at and above 40mg/dl and a LDL of less than 130 mg/dl.

Exercise:

  • Cardiovascular prevention guidelines recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week or 30 minutes a day.
  • Combination of aerobic and strength training exercises.
    • Aerobic exercises include swimming, jogging, cycling.
    • Strength training exercises such as: Taking the stairs, doing Qigong or Taichi, using hand weights/resistance band.

Say NO to smoking:

  • The risk of cardiovascular disease decreases by almost half in the first year of quitting.

Reduce Stress:

  • Listening to music
  • Planning your time well, spread them out.
  • Relaxation techniques: Yoga and medication to manage stress.

Diet:

  • Have a diet high in fibre, low in salt and saturated fat, plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, wholegrains and fish.
  • Our daily sugar intake should be no more than nine to eleven teaspoon of added sugar
  • Food for the heart: click here.
  • Healthy Cooking Methods:
    • Grilling, baking or boiling your food.
    • Select natural herbs and spices such as basil and oregano instead of using stock cubes or sauces to season your food.

Related article: Eating to your heart's content

Others:

  • Ensure that your Body Mass Index (BMI) is in the healthy weight range – BMI of <23kg/m2. Waist circumference of <90cm for men and <80cm for women.

  • ​Cardiovascular disease is the number 1 killer of women with a mortality rate of 1 in 3 women.
  • Cardiovascular disease claims 8 times more lives than breast cancer.
  • In a survey conducted by Manulife, 8 in 10 women were not aware that men and women have differing symptoms of heart disease.

Differences between men and women:

  • Women who are diabetic are 50% more likely to die of heart attack than men.
  • Women who suffer from depression have a higher risk of heart attack.
  • Women who smokes have a higher risk of heart disease than men.
  • Women are more likely to delay treatment seeking, and (as a result), less likely than men to receive timely care for reperfusion therapy.
  • Stress increases the risk of heart attack in women by 3.5 times and 2.6 times in men.

Symptoms of heart attack in Women:

  • Chest pain (most common symptom)
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Weakness
  • Unusual fatigue
  • Cold sweat
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Weak/heavy arms