WHAT IS YOUR RISK FOR HEART DISEASE?

WHAT IS YOUR RISK FOR HEART DISEASE?
Take This Short Test to Find Out. (Answer YES or NO)
You AGE and Gender 
You are a man over 45 years old.
You are a woman over 55 years old, or you have passed  menopause or had your ovaries removed.
Your FAMILY HISTORY 
You have a close blood relative who had a heart attack before age 55 (if father or brother) or before age 65 (if mother or sister).
You have a close blood relative who had a brain attack (stroke).
Cigarette and Tobacco SMOKE 
You smoke, or live or work with people who smoke every day.
Your Total CHOLESTEROL and HDL Cholesterol Levels
Your total cholesterol level is 240 mg/dL or higher.
Your HDL (“good”) cholesterol level is less than 35 mg/dL.
You don’t know your total cholesterol or HDL levels.
Your BLOOD PRESSURE 
Your blood pressure is 140/90 mm Hg or higher, or you
have been told your blood pressure is too high.
You don’t know what your blood pressure is.
PHYSICAL INACTIVITY 
You get less than a total of 30 minutes of physical activity on at least three days per week.
Excess BODY WEIGHT 
You are 20 percent or more overweight.
DIABETES increases your risk if… 
You have diabetes or need medicine to control your blood sugar.
Your MEDICAL HISTORY may increase your risk if… 
You have coronary artery disease, or you have had a heart attack.
A doctor said you have carotid artery disease, or you have had a stroke.
You have an abnormal heartbeat
If you answered YES to any of these questions, read along for details.
No one can predict whether or not a person will develop hean disease. Most people know someone who seemed the “picture of health” before a heart attack signaled a serious problem. Or perhaps you know someone else who is enjoying old age in spite of poor health habits. The difference is often genetics – something that cannot be changed. But you can take steps to control other heart disease risk factors that can be changed.
Uncontrollable Risk Factors
• Gender: Men are at a higher risk of heart disease than women; however, a woman’s risk becomes equal to a man’s after she experiences menopause. Male hormones are thought to decrease the level of “good” cholesterol in the body while increasing total cholesterol. Female hormones are thought to increase the level of “good” cholesterol while also decreasing total cholesterol.
• Age: Heart disease is more common with advancing age.
• Genetics: Heart disease tends to “run” in families. Individuals who have a family history of heart disease starting at a young age are considered at higher risk than individuals whose family history reveals no heart disease.
• Race: The risk of coronary artery disease is sUghtiy higher among African-American men than among white men. The risk of stroke is almost double for African-American women than it is for white women.
Controllable Risk Factors
• Smoking tobacco increases the risk of sudden cardiac death by two to four times over that of the non-smoker. The risk of stroke and high blood pressure ls-also increased. The good news is when smoking is stopped, the risk of heart attack and stroke returns to the same level of a non-smoker within about five years.
• High blood cholesterol contributes to the development of plaque formations that cause narrowing of the arteries. A certain amount of cholesterol is required for cell maintenance and repair, but the body can produce this amount in the liver. An excessive dietary intake is usually the cause of elevated blood cholesterol levels. However, some individuals are born with a condition that results in a consistently high blood cholesterol level, regardless of diet. Medications are now available to help reduce blood cholesterol that cannot be sufficiently lowered by diet and exercise.
• High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a medical condition in which the amount of pressure required to move blood through the body is consistently too high. The higher pressure means the heart has to work harder to keep blood moving through the body, which eventually causes damage to the blood vessels that carry the blood. Hypertension can usually be managed with a combination of medication. weight loss and exercise. However, high blood pressure has been called “the silent killer” because people may experience complications related to high blood pressure, such as heart attack or stroke, before they realize they have high blood pressure. Therefore, it is important to follow-up with your healthcare provider.
• Lack of exercise is a risk factor for coronary artery disease for several reasons. Physical activity carThelp the body use up more cholesterol and thereby reduce the total blood cholesterol level. Lack of exercise means that the heart has to work harder just to keep
blood circulating at a resting rate and is less able to respond to the increased demands caused by emotional stress, cigarette smoking, high blood pressure, obesity or infrequent increases in physical activity.
• The relationship of obesity to coronary artery disease is an increased likelihood of high blood cholesterol and high blood pressure, both of which are known risk factors. Excess body weight is defined as more than 20 percent over the “ideal” or recommended weight for your height, gender and body type.
• Diabetes is another medical condition associated with a higher risk of coronary artery disease. It is caused by an inability of the body to effectively utilize dietary sugar and starches for fuel. The effect on the heart and circulation is thought to be an increase in blood fats from the increased levels of blood sugar.
Contributing Factors
• Emotional stress is a normal part of everyone’s life, but the level of stress and a person’s response to stress are significant in estimating heart risk. One of the harmfiil effects of emotional stress is the body’s release of adrenaline into the bloodstream to prepare the body for the “flight or fight” response. When there is no physical release of the energy, the heart has worked harder for no reason. Although the relationship between emotional stress and heart disease is not as direct as the physical risk factors, it is known that sustained emotional stress can put a strain on the heart, and when combined with known risk factors, contributes to a higher level of risk.
Source: SaintFrancis Heart Center

Why Strokes Strike

What is a stroke?

A stroke is a disruption in the normal blood supply to the brain. A stroke often occurs suddenly and affects its victims in different ways. It is the 3rd most common cause of death in the United States with approximately 500,000 strokes occuring each year.

A stroke can occur at any age but is most common in people over 45 years of age with increased frequency in those 65 and older. 10-15 percent more men are affected by strokes than women.

Warning strokes

Transient ischemic attacks, better know as TIAs, are small, warning strokes that can happen before a major stroke. They occur when blood clot clogs an artery for a short time. Signs of a TIA are similar to a stroke, but usually last only a few minutes.

Signs and symptoms of stroke:

  • Sudden, severe headache
  • Blurred vision
  • Double vision
  • Blindness in one eye
  • Sudden trouble walking, loss of balance or coordination
  • Tunnel vision
  • Numbness and tingling of arm, hand or leg
  • Weakness in face, arm or hand
  • Sudden confusion, trouble talking or understanding speech

3 major risk factors of stroke:

  • Hypertension – high blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease

Other risk factors include:

  • Smoking
  • Substance abuse
  • Obesity
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • High stress levels
  • Elevated cholesterol levels

Now that you know why strokes strike, take these important steps to help prevent them:

  • Treat your high blood pressure – eat a balanced diet, maintain a healthy weight and exercise. Control your blood pressure with medication, if necessary
  • Quit smoking
  • Manage heart disease
  • Control diabetes
  • Seek help if you experience TIA or other stroke symptom

Stroke is an emergency!

If you or anyone you know has the symptoms of a stroke or TIA, go straight to emergency room or call 999. There are treatments that can be administered to help lessen the effects of a stroke, but it is a race against the clock. The quicker a person who has a stroke gets to the hospital, the better the chances of survival and recovery.

Source: SaintFrancis Health system http://www.saintfrancis.com

Computing Goes Mobile

When Apple claimed “we love music” as they first introduced the iPod, little did we know an underlining strategy behind the new Apple.

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A crude plot of Apple products by weight. Static computing to mobile computing.

From Macs to iPods, a major defining moment in moving towards mobile device strategy is the load-shedding of weight and a carefully chosen function: playing music.

Although “playing music” has only a small fraction of correlation with computing, the idea that you can bring the entire collection in your pocket (such mobility!) was at the core of this new strategy. A tightly integrated hardware & software company can always add more functions later as demonstrated with the introduction of iPhone several years later.

Laptops for a while have been the standard bearers of “mobile computing” but perhaps they were not mobile enough. The next level of mobility was going to be “pocketable” device

It's not a new concept. Portable music players have been around for many years but they are certainly not usable enough and pocketable enough. Apple took the leap and focused on improving these 2 key elements.

I think I'll write about this (mobility) more & explore what the future will hold.

Mobility is roughly = f (function, weight, size, battery life)

Cool Engineering Stuff

My work is indeed kinda cool.

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Solar-powered transmitter.

We don’t exactly employ this on the platform yet but knowing such possibility is indeed awesome.

I am a technology buff. Hope one day I make it to technology management & engineering management.

When Steve Jobs returned to Apple in 1997, he immediately recognized the possibility of reviving the struggling company: great engineers and engineering results around, but lousy engineering management.

Spot on.

Making a Come Back?

I have long wondered about going back to blogging. There are many ideas in my head that I need to record somewhere.

But fear from the past still haunts me. Perhaps I should make it a techno-blog rather than a personal blog. Then I won’t take things so personally.

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At least 270 degrees views on things. Getting all 360 is difficult.

Besides, majority of my short, quick thoughts are recorded in Twitter (@zzeed). Blogs are for long thoughts. Would you even be interested in that?

Fabulous Friday

Managed to conclude the troubleshooting. The closing wasn’t that smooth but pretty decent.

It seems like this Stratex technology is a little outdated. Supportability check required.

Learned something new – that’s always the greatest satisfaction of any offshore trip. :)

Alhamdulillah.

Transceiving Thursday

Working at two satellite platforms. First basket transfer, second… the tarzan swiinggg

I love watching the horizon and inhaling the breadth of the sea. The best part about working at satellite: when you see the boat heads towards you to pick you up.

Smashed during permit to work meeting & dinner. May Allah help me… Ya Allah, grant me the patience & the strength.