Young People and Heart Disease

heart disease

Young men and women need to be aware that they too are at risk of heart disease. A new study indicates that young men and women are often under diagnosed for heart disease. In fact, even though rates of high cholesterol among the women and younger men were similar to the rate in older men, those two groups of patients were nearly half as likely (10 percent vs. 19 percent) to be taking cholesterol-lowering drugs prior to their heart attack and were much less likely to be on aspirin for high blood pressure and other combination therapy.

Alarmingly, as Dr. Michael Miedema notes, “if you’re an older male, you’re much more likely to qualify for preventive therapy while females and younger males often do not meet criteria despite similar risk factors.” Online at-risk cardiac calculators, which weigh factors such as age and gender, usually indicate older people are more at risk for heart attacks. However, it is becoming more and more evident that young people are just as at risk!

Signs that you may have high cholesterol and may be at risk of a heart attack:

  1. You should monitor your blood sugar levels, your blood pressure levels, and your cholesterol levels, to see if any one of these levels is high.
  2. Obesity is strongly associated with elevated cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
  3. If you have a relative with heart disease, you should monitor your heart health, no matter what your age.
  4. Some races are stereotypically more at risk for certain heart related conditions.  For example, African Americans are more susceptible to both heart disease and high cholesterol.

If you fall into one or more of these categories, you should talk to your health care provider to potentially begin aggressive therapy. Therapy includes such initiatives as following a weight loss program, making healthier diet choices, and taking aspirin and Statins. The latter is a category of cholesterol drugs. The most popular drug used to treat high cholesterol is Lipitor. You can buy Lipitor at


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