Coronary heart disease is a woman's concern — every woman's concern. One in ten American women 45 to 64 years of age has some form of heart disease, and this increases to one in four women over 65. Another 1.6 million women have had a stroke. Both heart disease and stroke are known as cardiovascular diseases, which are serious disorders of the heart and blood vessel system.
Be Physically Active
Regular physical activity can help you reduce your risk of coronary heart disease. Being active helps women take off extra pounds, helps to control blood pressure, lessens a diabetic's need for insulin, and boosts the level of “good” HDL-cholesterol. Some studies also show that being inactive increases the risk of heart attack.
Cigarette smoking is a habit that greatly increases your chances of developing cardiovascular diseases. Surprising as it may seem, smoking by women in this country causes almost as many deaths from heart disease as from lung cancer. If you smoke, you are two to six times more likely to suffer a heart attack than a nonsmoking woman, and the risk increases with the number of cigarettes you smoke each day. Smoking also boosts the risk of stroke.