World Heart Day falls Friday

KUWAIT: Today, cardiovascular disease (CVD) is responsible for claiming 17.5 million lives a year, and by 2030 this is expected to rise to 23 million. Globally, 1 in 10 people aged 30-70 die prematurely from CVD, including heart disease and stroke, but the good news is that at least 80 percent of these premature deaths could be avoided or postponed.

This year, on September 29th, Sabah Al-Ahmad Cardiac Center (SACC), Al-Amiri Hospital, Kuwait along with World Heart Federation (WHF) is urging the entire residents of Kuwait to take action by sharing heart healthy tips and attending iconic illumination events. We can all 'share the power' and inspire our families, friends and communities around the world to make the small lifestyle changes that can make a powerful difference to heart health.

During this occasion, Professor David Wood, Cardiologist and President of the World Heart Federation said: "We cannot underestimate the global importance of good heart health - 31 percent of all deaths worldwide are from CVD. World Heart Day is our chance to bring people together to tackle the world's biggest killer and urge more people across the globe to improve their heart health. The power to change is in our hands. Making lifestyle changes such as eating more fruit and vegetables, keeping active and stopping smoking can save millions of lives."

Dr Mohammed Al-Jarallah, Senior Consultant Cardiologist , Director and head of the department of Cardiology, SACC, Al-Amiri hospital, Kuwait said: World Heart Day was founded in 2000 to inform people around the globe that heart disease and stroke are the world's leading causes of death, claiming 17.5 million lives each year. "Along with WHF, Sabah Al Ahmad Cardiac Center, Al-Amiri Hospital, Kuwait planning for various campaigning programs for raising awareness and encouraging individuals, families, communities and government to take action and help us to achieve our goal of a 25 percent reduction in premature deaths from CVD by 2025."Awaress should start from the grass root level ie, from schools, colleges etc. A country's prosperity purely depends on the health of the residents. Healthcare staffs should be properly trained to deliver the heart healthy messages on a day to day basis.

Dr Raja Dashti, Chairman of Medicine Department and Senior Consultant Cardiologist, SACC, Al-Amiri hospital, Kuwait said: "World Heart Day takes place on 29 September every year. The theme of this year is share the power - we along with WHF want everyone around the world to inspire each other to lead better, longer, more heart healthy lives. In Kuwait we have more expats and awareness programs should be focused in a multidimensional way so that it will help both citizens and expats. We have noticed that CVD events are more common in expats compared to Kuwaitis. We are planning for a hand to hand program with the government to fight against this rising number of cardiovascular events. Al-Amiri hospital started a new initiative named "I Care Campaign" for another 3 years. SACC is actively involved in this and theme of this campaign is to give assurance to the people that we the cardiologist and health care providers are there always for taking care of your heart. It increases the awareness of our obligations as health advocates besides being medical experts. Since 2013 SACC is regularly conducting World Heart Day campaigns and workshops and it has become a fixture.

Dr Rajesh Rajan, Cardiologist, SACC, Al-Amiri hospital, Kuwait said: Always try to be active mentally and physically. "Always ask few simple questions to yourself."

1. How healthy is my diet? A heart healthy diet should include low fat low cholesterol low salt foods.

2. How healthy is my habits? Stop smoking, avoid alcohol and avoid sedentary life style.

3. Know your numbers.

How healthy is my body weight? Keep your body mass index between 18.5 to 24.9.

How many minutes spared for my daily exercise? Daily do minimum 30 minutes brisk walking.

My Blood Pressure? After your 30th birthday keep monitoring your blood pressure periodically.

Created and led by the World Heart Federation (WHF), World Heart Day aims to combat the rising number of people with cardiovascular disease (CVD), the world's biggest killer, by raising awareness and promoting the importance of living a heart-healthy lifestyle. To mark World Heart Day 2017, illumination events are being held at iconic venues across the world.

The iconic venues turning red for World Heart Day 2017 include:

Table Mountain in South Africa

Cape Wheel, V&A Waterfront in Cape Town, South Africa

Jet d'Eau in Geneva, Switzerland

Angel del la Reforma in Mexico City, Mexico

Auckland Sky Tower in New Zealand

Presidential Jetty and Dhiragu Tower in Maldives

Lakeview in Bucharest, Romania

Sheraton Grand Doha in Qatar

Avala Tower in Belgrade, Serbia

Singapore Flyer, Helix Bridge, Maybank Tower and Marina Square

Menara Kuala Lumpur, KL Tower in Malaysia

Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt