Physician warns against increasing cardiovascular disease in Turkey

are likely to increase in Turkey due to a number of factors, including residential areas with little green space, difficult traffic conditions and growing consumption of fast food coupled with the abandonment of traditional and Mediterranean diets, the prevalence of work-related stress and high rates of smoking.

Every year approximately 200,000 Turks and about 17.5 million people around the world die of cardiovascular disease, according to Dr. Ozler said, quoting statistics from the World Health Organization (WHO).

Issuing a written statement on the occasion of National Heart Week on Thursday, Ozler said heart-related disease is still the leading cause of deaths around the world. The physician said two-thirds of all deaths caused by heart-related disease occur in low and middle-income families.

“A poor lifestyle due to unhealthy diet, air pollution, stress and rampant urbanization and difficulty in gaining access to high-quality health services have emerged as the leading factors of heart disease,” Ozler said in his statement.

While pointing out that except for congenital disorders, coronary disease is largely preventable, Ozler made 10 suggestions for reducing the risk of these diseases: Quit smoking, have a more positive outlook on life, take care of your diet, be physically active, manage your high blood pressure problem if you have one, try to maintain your ideal weight, keep your diabetes problem under control if you have one, have a regular sleep pattern and live well, get vaccinated in order to avoid colds and flu and surround yourself with positive people as friends.