What are the common causes of heart attacks ?
Technically, a heart attack is when part of the heart muscle dies or is severely damaged due to a decreased blood supply. Because a heart attack is an issue of blood flow, the primary cause of heart attacks is actually coronary artery disease.
Coronary artery disease is when the walls of the coronary arteries (arteries within the heart muscle leading oxygen to the heart) become partially or fully clogged with plaque (a build up of cells, lipids, calcium and fiborous connective tissue). Coronary artery disease is caused by a number of controllable and uncontrollable risk factors.
Uncontrollable risk factors for coronary artery disease include genetics (higher risk for those whose parents or grandparents had the disease), gender (higher risk in males), and age (higher risk above the age of 45 or 55 depending on gender).
Controllable risk factors include almost anything that would be considered part of a healthy (or unhealthy) lifestyle. Smoking, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure are the three primary controllable risk factors. Cholesterol and blood pressure can be raised over time through poor eating and exercise habits, high stress, and improper sleep. Making as many healthy lifestyle choices as possible can help reduce the risk of these factors which most likely lead to coronary heart disease, and ultimately, heart attacks.
There are good answers above. Major risk factors include several you cannot control, such as genetic heritage, gender (estrogen has a protective effect for pre-menopausal females), and age (the older you are, the higher your risk). There are many factors within your control, and good habits when you are young can give you a head start on a long and healthy life.
First, eat a balanced diet, with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. Eat meat in limited quantities (if at all), choose whole grains rather than processed grains, and don't eat too much junk food (one cookie a day won't hurt -- the entire box will!)
Next, get regular exercise. If you do sports, that is good, but even walking for 30 minutes a day has a major protective effect. If you are really busy, try studying on a stationary bicyle. I'm a professor and when it gets near midterms and finals and I don't have time to go to the gym, I do some of my class prep on my bike; it's a way to get in a bit of exercise while not losing studying/preparation time.
Don't smoke. Drink in moderation, if at all. Get enough sleep. And have an active social life (people with several friends actually live longer)!
High Blood pressure
High Blood Cholesterol
Obesity and OverWeight
These are the main common causes for Heart Attack...