September marks vascular disease awareness month. Why should you be aware of it? Because vascular disease is as common as cancer and heart disease, and responsible for 40% of deaths in the UK every year! Many of those deaths are preventable, however. Here’s what you need to know to reduce your risk.
Vascular disease refers to a collection of conditions that affect the circulatory system in every part of the body where the blood flows. These conditions are often known by other names that include:
Vascular disease occurs when the veins, lymph vessels and arteries become inflamed or weakened by fatty deposits in the blood vessels over time. As a result, this can affect circulation, which can lead to poor mobility and pain.
If left untreated, these fatty deposits can lead to peripheral arterial disease (PAD), atherosclerosis, amputation, coronary heart disease and heart attacks.
Vascular disease is incredibly common and responsible for 40 per cent of deaths in the UK. This makes it as prevalent a killer as cancer and heart disease. As worrying as that sounds, many of these deaths are preventable with healthy lifestyle choices.
There are a few risk factors that have been found to increase or accelerate a person’s chances of getting vascular disease:
Many risk factors mentioned above can be reduced with lifestyle changes. With a few tweaks to your diet, exercise and weight, for instance, you could reduce your risk for vascular disease and your overall health and wellbeing. Here are a few tips:
The Circulation Foundation is excited to announce this year’s national campaign to raise awareness of vascular disease called #TheBodyWalk. Can you help?
Whether you choose to walk, run, cycle or swim, you can help to raise funds for this great cause by asking friends and family to sponsor you £1 for every mile you achieve. You can find out more here: The Body Walk Fundraiser
If you are concerned about your vascular health, you should speak to your GP, as they will be able to conduct tests and give professional advice.
You can also take a look at these approved and certified health tests for use at home, which will help with general monitoring of you health: