April 23, 2013

1. Which disease is the number-one killer of women?
Heart disease kills more than 450,000 American women every year. For the last 20 years, heart disease has killed more women than men, and the gap is actually widening as mens heart attack death rates improve faster than womens. Yet only a third of women in the United States consider themselves at risk for heart disease, according to a 2006 poll.

2. Which of the following is a common trigger for heart attacks?
All of the above (overeating, stress, and anger). Heart attacks occur when a piece of plaque lining an artery wall ruptures and blocks the flow of blood to the heart. These triggers are known to contribute to ruptures, but heart attacks generally draw on existing conditions. Stress, strenuous exercise, and even heavy meals can be triggers for a heart attack.

3. How many Americans die each year from heart attacks?
Around 150,000 American men and women die from heart attacks each year. The good news: Most heart attacks today aren't fatal.

4. Which of the following is not a leading risk factor for heart disease?
Erectile dysfunction can be an indicator of risk for heart disease, but it is not considered a leading risk factor.

5. True or false: People suffering from depression are 65% more likely to develop heart disease.
True. Depression and heart disease are intricately linked. But the extent to which these two chronic conditions are caused by each other, or happen to occur in tandem, is an area experts are still exploring. How to treat both conditions simultaneously is another.

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