Posted on Aug 27, 2019, 10 p.m.
Stoke, diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease are forms of cardiometabolic disease which is now the leading cause of preventable death around the globe, and rates have been increasing since 2011 in America according to a study from Northwestern Medicine.
While the overall rate of fatal heart disease was found to have decreased over time, the rate slowed after 2010; deaths from diabetes and stroke declined from 1999-2010 but then leveled off, and deaths from high blood pressure increased from 1999-2017.
“We know the majority of deaths attributable to cardiometabolic disease are preventable,” said study senior author Dr. Sadiya Khan. “Our findings make it clear that we are losing ground in the battle against cardiovascular disease. We need to shift our focus as a nation toward prevention to achieve our goal of living longer, healthier and free of cardiovascular disease.”
Medical advancements have led to the decline in deaths related to diabetes, stroke, and heart disease, but since 2011 these rates leveled out and hypertension deaths continue to rise.
As published in the journal JAMA, mortalities in American between 1999-2017 were analyzed using data from the CDC’s Wide Ranging Online Database for Epidemiological Research, specifically focussing on deaths caused by diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and stroke.
Obesity is a major risk factor for cardiometabolic disease, although this study was not able to identify causes for the worsening cardiometabolic disease trends, the prevalence of obesity has significantly increased in recent decades, and this increase may be behind the increasing rates, according to Dr. Nilay Shah.
“Cornerstones of good cardiometabolic health include maintaining a normal body weight, eating a healthy diet, staying physically active and not smoking,” said study first author Dr. Shah. “These actions are important to preventing heart disease, no matter your age.”
It is important to prevent the risk factors for cardiometabolic health beginning early in life, which can be managed by participating in a heart healthy lifestyle, and consulting with your physician to assess/address any risk factors.
The researchers encourages policy makers to develop public health prevention strategies to promote healthy eating habits and provide safe places to participate in physical activities in their neighbourhoods. Increasing access to affordable healthcare and medications can also help to improve cardiovascular healthy equally across the entire American population.
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