Today's Big Stories

Smoking is the number one risk factor for heart attacks - cardiologist

South Africa woke up to the shocking news on Monday that former Bafana Bafana skipper Neil Tovey had suffered a heart attack.

CapeTalk's Kieno kammies speaks to Dr Richard Nethononda, cardiologist at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital about how to ensure we are not at risk of having a heart attack.

Dr Nethononda says smoking is the number one risk factor for heart attacks.

He says diabetes and hypertension also increases the chance of getting a heart attack and these risk factors are often driven by being overweight.

A heart attack is as a result of a sudden occlusion of one of the blood vessels, we call them coronary artery, which perfuse the heart muscle...

Dr Richard Nethononda, Cardiologist at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital

Dr Nethononda also mentioned stress as a contributing factor to heart attacks. He says stress makes the heart beat faster, disrupts sleeping patterns and elevates blood pressure.

Those things have a detrimental affect on the heart functions and can easily predispose you to heart attacks.

Dr Richard Nethononda, Cardiologist at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital

Listen for other risk factors to guard against having heart attacks below:

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