Heart Attack Prevention
Considering the fact that heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States, it makes a lot of sense to prioritize heart health and learn ways to prevent heart attacks. It is estimated that 80% of cardiovascular disease, including heart attack and stroke, are preventable—but how? Working one-on-one with a specialist is the best way to understand your inherent risk of developing heart disease and to build a lifestyle tailored to promoting heart health.
Determining Your Personal Risk for Heart Attack
Most people know that there are certain factors that increase a person’s risk for heart attack such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity and other comorbidities. However, at RevitaLife we prefer to take a more individualized approach to gauging heart attack risks. There are several methods to determine a person’s risk for heart attack, including the carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) test. A CIMT test measures the amount of plaque buildup in the arteries, which is a leading indicator of potential for developing heart disease or having a heart attack.
How the CIMT Test Works
Plaque can silently and slowly build up in the arteries without any signs or symptoms. A CIMT test offers insight into the health of your arteries by identifying changes in the wall thickness and arterial plaques of the carotid arteries. Since the state of your carotid arteries correlates to the state of other arteries throughout your body, a CIMT test offers valuable information to your doctor. If results of the CIMT test show notable aging of the arteries, Dr. Peláez can develop a protocol for you to follow that will lower your blood pressure and cholesterol, thereby reducing your risks for developing heart disease or experiencing a heart attack.
What to Expect During a CIMT Test
CIMT tests use ultrasound technology to view the arteries and are quick, completely painless and non-invasive. Dr. Peláez will begin the test by applying gel to your neck followed by the ultrasound probe to record images that can be viewed later. After examining your arteries for about ten minutes, Dr. Peláez will review your images to develop an understanding of your unique risks for developing heart disease. Since research suggests there is a strong correlation between plaques in the carotid arteries and plaques in the heart, a CIMT test provides valuable information.
Lifestyle Factors Influencing Your Heart Attack Risks
At RevitaLife, we believe in uncovering the underlying causes of symptoms rather than masking them. We take a similar approach to preventing heart disease, so we spend considerable time getting to know our patients and understanding the true states of their lifestyles. Some of the most important factors in reducing your risk of having a heart attack are:
- Eating healthily in ways that promote heart health
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Exercising safely
- Living tobacco-free
- Reducing stress
- Getting good quality sleep
- Getting routine health screenings.
We know many of these items are easier to discuss than to implement. This is why we work one-on-one with patients to develop a detailed plan that can actually be followed. For example, we explain exactly how to eat in ways that promote heart health, and we can help you understand what your healthiest weight is and how to achieve it.
Improve Your Cardiovascular Health Now
Integrative medicine’s approach to cardiovascular health is to keep patients from becoming high-risk heart disease candidates in the first place. We work with adults of all ages to help them optimize their diets, reduce their exposures to toxins, exercise adequately, sleep well, reduce stress and live a more balanced life in an effort to prevent the development of all chronic diseases—including heart disease. Through the help of CIMT testing and other non-invasive diagnostic measures, we can help determine your unique risks for heart disease and help identify ways you can prevent heart attacks.
Assess your heart health today by scheduling a consultation. Call us at 850.436.4444.