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Smoking the No. 1 preventable risk factor for heart disease
January 4, 2009 (AUGUSTA, GA) – There are plenty of reason to kick the tobacco habit, but one of the most pressing is the affect smoking has on the heart.
According to the American Heart Association, nearly 500,000 people die annually from complications from smoking. Those complications include everything from atherosclerosis (the buildup of fatty plaques in the arteries) to coronary heart disease.
Dr. Michael Holman, M.D., a cardiologist who practices at University Hospital, said he is very forthright with his patients who smoke.
“I simply tell them that they have to quit,” he said. “So many cardiovascular conditions are affected by smoking, and the best way to improve your cardiovascular health is to quit.”