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What is coronary artery disease (CAD)?

By AJ Murphy

Older woman and her husband are very excited about plants that they grew in their garden

CAD is the most common type of heart disease. Plaque begins to build up in your arteries. Over time, your arteries become clogged. CAD symptoms include chest pain, a faster heartbeat, shortness of breath and dizziness.

 

Some people have a higher chance of getting CAD than others. Make sure you go to your yearly checkup to check for risk factors. These include:

 

  • Being overweight
  • Having high blood pressure
  • Living with high stress
  • Not being physically active
  • Eating an unhealthy diet
  • Smoking or breathing in secondhand smoke

 

Living with CAD

 

Don’t let CAD stop you from living your best life. There are ways you can fight and prevent CAD and improve your heart health, like:

 

  • Staying physically active
  • Quitting smoking
  • Controlling conditions like high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes
  • Eating a low-fat, low-salt diet that’s rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Reducing and managing stress

About the author

AJ Murphy is an evocative young writer who grew up in Boston's Charlestown neighborhood. AJ began his writing career at Alaska Ice Rinks Inc. in Anchorage, AK, where he also drove a Zamboni and took care of outdoor hockey rinks.

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