Coronary heart disease

HideShow resource information


A disease of the heart caused by the narrowing of the arteries that supply the heart with oxygen. This narrowing is caused by arterial plaque, consisting of fat globules and cholesterol being deposited on the walls of the arteries.

Arterial plaque may block the delivery of nutrients to the artery walls, causing the arteries to lose their elesticity which can result in chest pain called angina.

A myocardial infarction occurs when one of the coronary arteries is blocked completely. 

1 of 4

Health, social and environmental factors

Family history- Those with a family history of CHD could be at an increased risk of devloping the disease.

Increasing age- The peak age for men to develop the disease is between 55 to 64 years and women between 75 to 84 years.

Stress- Too much stress and tension can raise the blood pressure and make relaxation and sleep difficult. This can increase the risk of CHD

Smoking- The heart and circulatory system has to work harder in a smoker to supply the body with oxygen. The risk of blood clots also increases.

Obesity- The risk of CHD increases in people with a BMI above 30.

2 of 4

Health, social and environmental factors

Low birth weight- Studies have shown that babies with a low birth weight have a greater risk of developing CHD in later life.

High blood pressure- Can damage blood vessels and increases the risk of arterial plaque deposits which contribute to the development of the disease.

Type 2 diabetes- Diabetics can have problems with the flow of blood around the body. They are prone to higher blood pressure and higher cholesterol levels.

3 of 4

Diet and lifestyle factors

Levels of salt- There are possible links between salt intake and high blood pressure. High blood pressure is recognised as a significant risk factor in the devlopment of CHD.

Alchohol consumption- A high alcohol intake can contribute to CHD in a number of ways. Regular intake increases the risk of high blood pressure and damage to heart muscles.

Fat- A high saturated fat intake can increase the amount of cholesterol in the blood. Trans fatty acids raise blood cholesterol levels and have been associated with increasing the risk of heart disease.

4 of 4


No comments have yet been made

Similar Home Economics: Food & Nutrition resources:

See all Home Economics: Food & Nutrition resources »See all Coronary heart disease resources »