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On Heart Disease Essay

1335 words - 5 pages

On Heart Disease

Coronary heart disease makes up 56% of all deaths relating to heart
conditions. The heart pumps blood around the body carrying oxygen and
other essential nutrients to the areas in the body where they are
needed.1 Coronary Heart disease is when this process is restricted or
interrupted. The coronary arteries come off the main aorta, which are
the first arteries to receive freshly oxygenated blood. They pass over
the surface of the heart and supply it with oxygen. The process
becomes restricted because the walls of the arteries become narrowed
by a gradual build-up of atheroma (fatty material). This can quite
often result in serious illness or death.3

The risk of heart disease is much greater for people that have a poor
diet, who smoke and also do little exercise. It is also more likely
for men to suffer from heart disease than women.3, 8 & 10

For smokers that have already had a heart attack as a result of heart
disease that continue to smoke, are twice as likely to have another
heart attack within one year if they continue to smoke. Carbon
monoxide and nicotine are the two products of tobacco smoke that have
the most harmful effect on the heart.2&3 Carbon monoxide joins onto
haemoglobin of the blood, making it less able to carry oxygen to the
areas of the body where it is required. In some smokers, up to half of
the blood can be carrying carbon monoxide instead of oxygen. This
means that the body is being slowly deprived of essential oxygen.2
Nicotine is harmful because it stimulates the body to produce
adrenaline, which, in turn causes the heart to beat faster. This means
that blood pressure is increased and that the heart is working
excessively.11

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All this evidence seems to say that the smoker is responsible for
developing heart disease. However, if the smoker was uninformed of the
harmful effects of smoking, then it can't be the smoker's fault. Many
years ago people actually thought that smoking was good for you. This
was because little scientific research had been done into the effects
of smoking. The responsibility should have been that of the tobacco
companies and the government. This meant that people had been misled
into thinking that smoking was beneficial to their health, which means
that if they developed heart disease, then this was the fault of the
tobacco companies and the government. Recently in America smokers have
attempted to sue tobacco companies on this basis.12

Personally I think that if heart disease has developed in a smoker at
this time then it is the fault of the smoker. There are warnings on
the front of all cigarette packets now and everyone is educated on the
effects of smoking.

If a person has a high intake of LDL (low density lipoprotein), a high
intake of alcohol, and generally a poor diet then they...

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