Half of Scots fear loved one will die of a heart attack

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Just under half have already already lost someone or know someone affected by heart disease says BHF Scotland poll

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20th January 2016 by Paul Cardwell 1 Comment

Over half of Scots fear that a loved one could be struck down with a potentially life-threatening heart attack or stroke according to a charity’s poll.

The British Heart Foundation (BHF) Scotland found 53% of those living north of the border fear a close friend or relative will suffer the fate, with 48% having already lost someone or know someone affected by heart disease.

The survey also found that four in 10 Scots who worry about a loved one’s health are too afraid to talk to them about it for fear of upsetting someone.

It’s vital we do everything we can to reduce our risk and protect our hearts against these devastating conditions

With around 710,000 people living with heart and circulatory disease in Scotland, BHF Scotland released the results of its survey to let people know they are not alone with their concerns and to encourage people to speak about their worries.

It has launched its 2016 Wear it. Beat it. campaign which aims to raise £1 million by asking people to wear red on Friday, 5 February and hold a fundraising event.

Since 2009 the campaign has raised over £6million towards new cardiovascular science.

Dr Mike Knapton, associate medical director at BHF Scotland, said: “Heart disease can strike anyone at any age, without warning. That’s why it’s vital we do everything we can to reduce our risk and protect our hearts against these devastating conditions.

“This survey highlights just how important it is for us to talk about the UK’s biggest killer with our friends and family.

“Too many lives are cut short by heart disease every year. We urgently need to accelerate research into finding new ways to fight it.

“By signing up to Wear it. Beat it. you can help fund cutting-edge research to better understand, treat and predict who is at risk.”

Meanwhile, the UK headquarters of British Heart Foundation has called for a ban on all junk food TV advertising before 9pm.

The charity says millions of children are being exposed to junk food adverts during popular shows such as the X Factor and Hollyoaks.

It says 12 junk food adverts were shown during just one X Factor show alone, promoting unhealthy snacks such as crisps, chocolates and pizzas.

The current regulations mean that foods high in fat, saturated fat, salt and sugar are only banned from being advertised during children’s programming.

This means programmes that fall within adult airtime, yet are watched by high numbers of children, are not covered by the regulation

The BHF is calling for the UK government to announce a ban on junk food advertising before 9pm as part of its Childhood Obesity Strategy that is expected later this month.

Mike Hobday, BHF director of policy, said: “We mustn’t allow food companies to continue to exploit a failing regulatory system that allows them to bombard TV screens with junk food adverts at the times when the highest numbers of children are watching TV.

“The government needs to look at the evidence and introduce stricter regulations for junk food advertising as part of a robust childhood obesity strategy. This is vital if we’re to help families and children make informed choices about their health.

"By protecting young people against the sophisticated marketing techniques of junk food advertisers we can help tackle the obesity crisis which threatens the heart health of future generations.”

29th January 2016 by Claire

Anyone with concerns over heart disease should take look at the Heart Disease - Information and Discussion Facebook page. Lots of people talking and it keeps you up to date on all of the newest research and discoveries. https://www.facebook.com/groups/230858323741535/