Increasing CVD has crippling effect on economy: PEW

ISLAMABAD, 23 DEC (DNA) -The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) on Tuesday said heart diseases were one of the leading causes of death among adults and best way to prevent it is an active lifestyle.

Heart diseases are common, costly and deadly for people having diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, tension and smoking, said Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President PEW.

Talking to  President Pakistan National Heart Association (PANAH), Gen. Masood ur Rehman Kiani (Retd) and former surgeon general Pakistan Gen. Karamat Niazi, he said that at least twelve people die every hour in Pakistan due to heart attack while 34 per cent of all deaths in Pakistan are caused by cardiovascular diseases (CVDs).

Around 40,000 infants in Pakistan are born with congenital heart diseases every year and 15,000 of them are critical, he added.  Dr. Murtaza Mughal informed that hypertension is the leading risk factor for CVD and it is associated with 7.6 million deaths globally while in Pakistan 19 percent population over  15 years of age are suffering from it.

The prevalence of obesity in up to 45pc of the urban areas while up to 25pc of children are either overweight or at risk of being overweight. Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that young are increasingly living unhealthy lives confined to laptops and mobile phones. They don’t exercise enough, consume fast foods and sugary drinks which contribute to increased cholesterol levels in the blood.

Simple food, simple life and affability is key to avert heart diseases adding simple food including more vegetables and fruits can improve the life quality. He said that unmanageable burden of CVDs has a crippling effect on the economy and could only be controlled through effective strategies and resource allocation at both the government and non-government levels.

A World Bank study says that South Asians suffer their first heart attacks at 53, six years earlier than people anywhere else which account for 55 per cent of the region’s total disease burden. DNA

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