Cardiovascular diseases affect a large number of people worldwide, being even the first cause of mortality.
According to figures from the World Health Organization (WHO), it is estimated that cardiovascular diseases are responsible for 31% of all deaths registered worldwide.
Exactly what do we mean when we talk about cardiovascular disease?
The cardiovascular disease is the manifestation of several disorders that are able to affect the cardiovascular system. All of them have in common the injury of both the heart and the arteries.
According to the injured structure, one can speak of various types of cardiovascular disease. Thus we find conditions such as angina, heart attacks, strokes, heart failure, arrhythmias, high blood pressure, heart disease and even sudden death.
How does cardiovascular disease originate?
The blood vessels and the heart muscle are structures vulnerable to several conditions, mainly the deposit of fat in the wall of the arteries.
Arteries are structures that form a closed circuit through which blood circulates. Unlike veins, these carry oxygen-laden blood from the lungs to all organs and systems. When the arteries are clogged, the effective diameter through which the blood can circulate decreases, leading to a compromise in the supply of oxygen to the tissues.
In conditions such as rest, an arterial obstruction may not cause major problems, but when an increase in oxygen demand occurs, such as in stress or situations that cause an increase in the frequency of the heartbeat, the artery is not able to supply it., which leads to the occurrence of a failure in its delivery, known as ischemia. This is the cause of angina and heart attacks.
Why does blockage of the arteries occur?
The arteries are lined inside by a layer called the endothelium. This is more than a simple lining, the endothelium is an entire organ since various metabolic processes occur in it that lead to the production of substances such as nitric oxide, which are capable of regulating the diameter of the arteries and favoring their dilation or enlargement. gauge.
In the endothelium there is also a phenomenon that constitutes the basis of cardiovascular disease, known atherosclerosis. This consists of the deposit of cholesterol plaques on the arterial wall, which leads to a decrease in the internal diameter of the artery, compromising its ability to allow blood to pass.
There are several factors related to the development of arteriosclerosis, these include:
· Alterations in blood cholesterol levels, especially the so-called bad cholesterol or LDL (Low-density lipoproteins: low-density lipoproteins).
· Elevated triglycerides.
· Insulin resistance or diabetes mellitus.
· Cigarette smoking habit.
· Genetic factors.
Manifestations of cardiovascular disease
These disorders are usually accompanied by a series of very characteristic complaints. These include:
· Painful tightness in the chest, which can also include the jaw, shoulder and even the left arm. This occurs mainly when carrying out some type of physical activity or facing situations that produce emotions such as anguish, rage or anger. They may also occur when the person is at rest.
· Crushing pain and numbness in any part of the body such as the hands, legs, or feet.
· Difficulty breathing.
· Palpitations, especially if they are perceived as irregular
· Sometimes these discomforts are of low intensity and they subside spontaneously so they are not usually paid attention to.
Often people with cardiovascular disease discover their condition after suffering a serious event such as a heart attack or stroke.
Is it possible to prevent cardiovascular disease?
This disorder can be prevented by implementing a series of measures that are based on changes in lifestyle.
To do this, you have to change some habits that are unhealthy, such as poor diet based on excess fats and refined sugars, cigarette smoking, sedentary lifestyle and excessive intake of alcoholic beverages.
Adopt habits such as regular aerobic physical activity (at least 30 minutes a day), maintaining an adequate body weight, reducing the consumption of refined sugars, keeping cholesterol, triglycerides and glycemic values within normal limits, as well as monitoring pressure levels arterial, are effective measures to prevent the onset or progression of cardiovascular disease.
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