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Healthy Balance

Heart Age: How Old Is Your Heart?

You know how old you are. But certain conditions and behaviors can age your heart so that it is actually much older and much more unhealthy than you are. Factors that age your heart include:

  • Physical fitness
  • Diabetes
  • Cholesterol levels
  • Diet
  • Family history
  • Smoking

Brandy Patterson, MD, says smoking leads to plaque buildup in your arteries. She’s seen patients in their early to mid-20s who have already had a stroke or a heart attack because of smoking.

“More than 75 percent of heart disease cases can be prevented by making the right lifestyle changes,” Patterson says.

Learn more about heart disease prevention in this week’s podcast.

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