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atrial fibrillation

Chocolate Protects Against Heart Attacks

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Chocolate: Even More Positives!


Everybody likes chocolate, and they should–it’s more than just delicious and tempting. It actually does have some nutrients. Certainly, the way in which it is regularly eaten often involves many “fats” which aren’t so good for the body; but on the plus side, a new Harvard study has found that eating chocolate can actually help prevent heart disease.

Findings Of The Study


Through rigorous study, it was discovered in London that middle-aged adults who regularly consume up to, but not exceeding, 3.5 ounces of chocolate a day were at lowered risk for the contraction of heart disease. This study followed over 20,000 residents in Norfolk, England for about eleven years. Of those who died of heart disease, 12% were in the chocolate category, 17.5% were in the non-chocolate category.

Should You Start Throwing Chocolate In With Your Fruits and Veggies?


Well, maybe don’t start doing that just yet. Reasons why are varied. Some theories include the body’s natural response to substances like chocolate. When the body is happy, the brain triggers the release of dopamine. Dopamine is known to lower stress levels. Stress erodes the Telomerase at the end of DNA. Telomerase is kind of like the tape at the end of a shoe string. It keeps your genetic code intact so that it doesn’t unravel and get trampled on by allegorical health sneakers. But with age, telomerase slowly unravels from the end of your DNA. The reason is stress. The more stressed out you are, the more telomerase erodes from your genes. There’s a reason stressful people tend to have diminished lifespans. When chocolate releases dopamine in the brain, that helps reduce stress levels. Reduced stress means strengthened telomerase, which in turn tends toward longevity. The thing is, most chocolates aren’t entirely healthy for you in their substances. Mental reaction besides, it doesn’t matter how well-bound up your telomerase is around your DNA if you’ve clogged your arteries with fat, and the coding can’t sequence well enough to repair and maintain the body. Many chocolate compounds don’t even contain “real” chocolate, and are basically pseudo-cacao which has a synthetically derived taste fostered for increased profit margins on the part of the chocolate company. They taste good, and you get a dopamine response–but then the false ingredients rot the teeth, mess with your digestion, and ultimately end up adding padding which inhibits bodily function. So if you are thinking about deliberately adding 3.5 ounces of chocolate to your diet on a daily basis, you should ensure beforehand that you’re already living a healthy lifestyle filled with healthy foods, and that the chocolate you ingest is of the purest quality. This will ensure all the positive health benefits while eliminating collateral damages.

Diminished Diabetes Risk, Too? How?!?


Apparently, chocolate ingestion on a regular basis can also help inhibit your risk for diabetes. Dark chocolate ingested in 100 gram daily portions was able to reduce the risk of diabetes in subjects between the ages of 18 and 69. Liver enzymes were improved, and insulin resistance was curbed. One reason for this is likely because dark chocolate doesn’t have a ubiquity of the sugar which causes diabetes. Additionally, chocolate is strong in polyphenols, which are known to be good for their cardiometabolic effects.

Curtail Diabetes and Heart Disease With Dark Chocolate


Dark chocolate is certainly a recommendable solution to varying medications and treatments, but it must be eaten carefully, in controlled amounts, and prepared in a way that is the most healthy. Consult your physician to see if such a diet may be recommendable for you in the future.

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Understanding Heart Disease

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Heart disease is a very serious problem in the United States. Each year, over 600,000 people die of heart disease each year. It is the leading cause of death in men and women. Because heart disease is such a serious problem, it is important that you know what causes the disease and ways that you can prevent it.

What is Heart Disease

There are a few types of heart disease and if not caught in time, they can be fatal. The types of heart disease include:

  • Heart attack
  • Irregular heart rhythm (Arrhythmia)
  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Heart valve disease
  • Sudden cardiac death
  • Congenital heart failure
  • Enlarged heart (Cardiomegaly)
  • Heart muscle disease
  • Dilated Cardiomyopathy
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
  • Restrictive Cardiomyopathy
  • Pericarditis
  • Pericardial effusion
  • Marfan Syndrome
  • Heart murmurs

What are the Symptoms of Heart Disease

The symptoms of heart disease can differ, depending on the type that you are suffering from. Overall, however, most of the symptoms are alike, making it difficult to tell what is wrong unless you see a doctor. Also, it is important to understand that heart disease can present very differently in men than in women. Some of the most common symptoms of a heart attack include:

  • Heart palpitations (A fluttering or flip flopping in your chest. You could also feel as though you are skipping heartbeats.)
  • A strong pounding feeling in the chest
  • Pain, pressure, or tightening in the chest
  • Shortness of breath
  • Extreme weakness or fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Excessive sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting

Risk Factors for Heart Disease

There are certain risk factors that make it more likely for one person to suffer from heart disease than another person. These risk factors include:

  • Sex (Males are more likely to develop heart disease than females)
  • Old age
  • Family history of heart disease
  • Post-menopausal women
  • Race (Mexican-Americans, African-Americans, and American Indians are more likely to develop heart disease than Caucasians)
  • Smokers and tobacco product users
  • Individuals with high blood pressure (hypertension)
  • High LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) and low LDL (good cholesterol)
  • People who are physically inactive
  • Obesity (and individual who is 20 percent over their ideal weight)
  • Excessive drinking
  • Recreational drug use
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • Uncontrolled stress
  • Uncontrolled anger

How To Lower the Risk of Developing Heart Disease

If you have a risk factor for developing heart disease, there are a few things that you can do and changes that you can make to reduce your risk. Some of these include:

  • Quit smoking: Smokers have more than twice the risk of developing heart disease than non-smokers.
  • Improve your cholesterol levels: You can improve your cholesterol levels by changing your diet. If that doesn’t work, your doctor can prescribe medication.
  • Control your blood pressure: You can control your blood pressure through diet, exercise, and weight management. If necessary, your doctor can prescribe medication.
  • Keep your diabetes under control.
  • Achieve a healthy weight through diet and exercise.
  • Become more active by walking or exercising.
  • Eat a heart-healthy diet, low in salt, cholesterol, trans fat, saturated fat, and refined sugars. Introduce more fruits, vegetables, nuts, and whole grains to your diet.
  • Manage your stress and anger: Poorly controlled stress and anger can be treated with relaxation techniques, such as yoga, meditation, and massage. You can also try to manage your time better and set realistic goals to reduce your stress. An anger management class can help you control your anger.
  • Quit drinking: Seek professional help if necessary.
  • Quit doing recreational drugs; Seek professional help if necessary.

Heart disease is a leading killer in the United States. If you know the risk factors for heart disease, you can start trying to make changes to live a healthier life.

 

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What is Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation?

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The ablation of atrial fibrillation refers to an invasive procedure used in atrial fibrillation treatment. Ablation is the melting away or removal of unwanted tissue or structure. Atrial fibrillation is a common cardiac arrhythmia. The occurrence of atrial fibrillation has increased over the years, in both developing word and developed world. In case you have atrial fibrillation, electrical impulses don’t usually arise in the Sino-atria (SA) node. However, most impulses start simultaneously & spread through the atria and will compete for an opportunity to travel through the atrioventricular (AV) node. This, therefore, will result in a disorganized, irregular, and very rapid heartbeat.

The impulses rate through the atria ranges from 300-600 beats in every minute. Luckily, as the impulses pass through the atrioventricular (AV) node, they are slowed down, and the resultant pulse rate is mostly below 150 beats in every minute.

Atrial fibrillation classification

  1. Persistent atrial fibrillation

The episodes of atrial fibrillation will last for over seven (7) days

  1. Paroxysmal atrial fibrillation

This simply means that atrial fibrillation terminate spontaneously and normally lasts for less seven (7) days

  1. Permanent atrial fibrillation

This refers to an atrial fibrillation that failed cardioversion, or in which cardioversion was not even attempted.

  1. Lone atrial fibrillation

This refers to an atrial fibrillation that occurs when you are still young with no evidence of a significant disease.

  1. Non-valvular atrial fibrillation

This refers to an atrial fibrillation occurring in the absence of any illness that involve your heart valves.

Atrial fibrillation symptoms

There are some patients with atrial fibrillation that may be fully asymptomatic. Some of the bothersome symptoms that you may have include palpitations, breath shortness, chest discomfort, giddiness, and fatigue among many others.

The risk factors for atrial fibrillation

Some of the risk factors of atrial fibrillation include the following;

  • Increasing age
  • Hyperlipidemia
  • Hypertension
  • Metabolic Syndrome
  • Heart failure
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Obesity
  • Chronic renal disease

Reasons why atrial fibrillation is dangerous

Atrial fibrillation is dangerous since it increases the stroke risks significantly. If you have atrial fibrillation, you are about 3 to 5 times more likely to experience a stroke than when you don’t have it. Heart contractions that are not coordinated will lead to blood pooling within your atria. This blood pooling will result in the formation of a clot, and when this gets dislodged & pumped into your bloodstreams, it will potentially go to your brain and cause a stroke. Apart from increasing stroke risks, atrial fibrillation can also result in heart failure.

How atrial fibrillation is diagnosed

After a serious physical examination and interview, your physician will order some investigations. An electrocardiogram can be used in diagnosing of atrial fibrillation. An electrocardiogram is simply a test that will check for any problem with electrical activity of your heart.

Furthermore, your doctor can order other tests, such as chest X-ray, an echocardiogram, or even blood tests.

Atrial fibrillation management

The management of atrial fibrillation usually seeks to attain three main goals. These goals include;

  1. Slowing down your heart rate
  2. Restoring and maintaining your normal heart rhythm
  3. Prevention of stroke

In conclusion, the above is just some of the information that you need to know about atrial fibrillation. Currently, the alternative drugs that are used to treat atrial fibrillation include clopidogrel and aspirin. If you have atrial fibrillation, you should be aware that relatively simple treatment measures will reduce stroke risks dramatically. Therefore, it is always imperative that you seek medication early in case you suspect you have this condition.

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