4th August 2017

Speech: Heart disease

Every 90 minutes a New Zealander dies from heart disease. Which is unfortunately New Zealand’s most common killer. With 172,00 New Zealanders currently living with heart disease. Today i am going to be talking to you about heart disease. And how New Zealanders can prevent the risk of heart disease. Smoking, unhealthy diet, physical inactivity and genetics are all associated with heart disease, and are some of the main points which i will be talking to you about about.  


Many New Zealanders unfortunately die prematurely from heart disease, and they do not reach the average life expectancy of 71 years. This could be prevented if New Zealander becomes smoke free. Smoke free New Zealand’s goal is to be smokefree by 2025. Today 85% of New Zealanders are smoke free, and smoke free New Zealand has 7 years to meet their goal and help the other 15% of New Zealanders quit smoking. This is one of the main causes of heart disease, and with one in six new zealanders smoking over the age of 15 this makes smokers more than 4x as likely to die from heart disease than non smokers. I believe that with some effort New Zealand can be smokefree by 2025. By doing so this will hopefully lower the about of deaths from heart disease and other diseases.    


Another way New Zealanders can lower the amount of deaths from heart diseases, is by eating healthy. Many New Zealanders spend unnecessary money on fizzy drinks and treat items and also takeaways. When what they really doing is killing them and their families. New Zealand is lucky enough to have free clean safe tap water to drink from. Also with many supermarkets located around New Zealand.  Which is full of weekly sales and healthy food. And With heaps cheap and easy recipes online full of nutrients, that is not going to kill you in the long run. Unfortunately 2 in 5 New Zealanders don’t meet the average serving of 5 fruit and vegetables a day. But by spending the extra few dollars on a healthy meal and snacks they could be saving the thousands of hospital bills. With these little changes to new zealanders diet. I believe that this will not only change the person’s well being but help prevent the risk of heart disease.   


Almost half of New Zealanders are not physically active for more than 30 minutes a day can be another reason why heart disease is such a high killer in New Zealand. By just having 30 minutes of exercise a day could be as simple as taking a walk around your block. Taking a quick walk on your lunch break or even walking to work or school if close enough. So there is no reason for the excuses that we make on why we can not have regular physical activity. I believe that with just a little amount exercise, you will not only have a lower risk.


By eating healthier, having regular exercise and cutting back or stop drinking alcohol and quitting smoking, will not only lower the amounts of death from heart disease but also will reduce the risk of other diseases such as type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, high blood pressure and some cancers. Just by people doing these simple thing it’s a big role of lowering the amount of deaths from heart disease. Another thing that could help is by people having regular blood pressure and cholesterol check.  Also it is highly recommended by health professionals if people are 35 and over, they should start getting their heart checked. Regular check ups are very important to help maintain a healthy heart. And to help prevent heart disease in  early stages, so more people don’t join the 860 people who die prematurely from heart disease a month.


Another really big cause of heart disease is genetics. Which happens because your body is made up of trillions of cells. And this affects how we look and how our bodies work. And we inherit of them from our parents. But inherited heart conditions that is  caused by a fault in one or more genes. If one of your parents have a faulty gene there is a 50/50 chance of you inheriting heart disease or another disease. A story from the heart research institute website gave me a better idea on how severe genetic heart disease is and how it can affect your family in so many ways. The story is about a New Zealand women who story tears her family apart. When her father was 35 her first suffered from a angina. By the time he was 45 he suffered from is first heart and a stent was inserted. In 2003 after visiting many doctors his wife died of a massive heart attack. And soon after her father suffered from another heart attack. And they had to put another stent in. Today her father is still alive age 70 and continues to be aware of his condition. But in 2007 her older brother was only 35 at the time had experienced a mild heart attack and he too had 2 stents inserted.

But because the  heart disease being genetic her family, she and her 2 siblings continue to be aware of the condition of how it can affect the whole family. Today she gives back to the ‘Heart Research Institute.’ to show her support to help the research for the future for people with Heart disease.


Today from my  speech i would like you to take away, the severity heart disease and how we can not lower the amount of deaths by not doing what we are doing. But us as a nation are the only ones who can do it. Just by quitting smoking and lower your alcohol  consumption. And by generally eating healthier and exercising. Also by people getting regular check ups at the local gp this can help maintain there heart disease and can hopefully lower the amounts of deaths caused by it. I would like you to go away with thinking of how you can help you or other people prevent the risk of health disease.  

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