Learn How Nicotine Products Affect Your Cardiovascular Health

How Nicotine Products Affect Your Cardiovascular Health

Nicotine is a substance that is found in cigarettes and other tobacco products. It's a stimulant that speeds up the heart rate and breathing and can make people feel more alert. It can also be addictive, which makes it difficult for people to stop consuming nicotine products. On this page, you'll learn more about how nicotine affects the heart and can contribute to cardiovascular disease. Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States. Every year, nearly 800,000 Americans die from heart disease and stroke. These diseases account for one in three deaths in the United States. That's why it's essential to adopt a healthy lifestyle and see a cardiologist.

Dr. Arash Bereliani from the Beverly Hills Institute for Cardiology and Preventive Medicine is a world-renowned expert in the field of Preventative and Functional Cardiovascular Disease. Our practice incorporates the latest cutting-edge research and advanced genetic testing to predict an individual's risk of developing heart disease. Every treatment plan is personalized to each individual and is created for those with and without cardiovascular disease. Dr. Bereliani treats patients using traditional and integrative medicine to help them manage their heart health. Learn more about how nicotine can contribute to heart disease on the rest of the page below.

How Nicotine Affects Your Body

Nicotine is a stimulant that is found in cigarettes and other tobacco products. When you smoke, the nicotine travels through your bloodstream and to your brain. There, it binds to receptors called nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This causes the release of a number of neurotransmitters, including dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. These neurotransmitters are responsible for the pleasurable feelings that are associated with cigarette smoking. Nicotine products also have other effects on the body, specifically your heart rate, blood pressure, and overall cardiovascular health. It increases your heart rate and blood pressure, and it can make you feel more alert. This stimulant can also make you feel anxious or stressed. Over time, it may cause damage to your lungs and increase your risk of developing lung cancer and other diseases. Below, you'll find out specific ways in which nicotine products affect different parts of the human body.

Nicotine and Your Heart Rate

When nicotine is absorbed into your bloodstream and travels to your brain, it causes the release of adrenaline. This triggers the "fight or flight" response which causes your heart rate to increase. Nicotine products also cause the release of other chemicals that can damage your heart. These chemicals can make your blood vessels narrower, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Nicotine also makes it more difficult for your heart to pump blood. When your heart has to work harder to pump blood, the heart muscle weakens, which eventually leads to heart failure. It speeds up your heart rate and blocks a type of receptor called the alpha-2 adrenergic receptor. When these receptors are blocked, the sympathetic nervous system is stimulated, and this increases heart rate. The increase in heart rate caused by nicotine can be dangerous for people who already have heart problems, worsening their condition. If you have heart disease, it's important that you quit cigarette smoking. Quitting smoking is the best thing you can do for your heart health. Smoking cessation can lower your risk of heart attack, stroke, and other heart problems.

Nicotine and Your Blood Pressure

There's extensive research on the effects of nicotine when it comes to blood pressure. Nicotine is known to cause both a short-term and long-term increase in blood pressure, and this effect can be especially pronounced in smokers or people who are continually exposed to secondhand smoke. The stimulant can cause the body to release more adrenaline, which can lead to high blood pressure and the accumulation of plaque in the arteries. Smokers and people who are exposed to secondhand smoke are at an increased risk for developing hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases. This is because the nicotine in cigarettes and other tobacco products can cause long-term damage to the blood vessels and increase the risk of a heart attack or stroke.

If you are a smoker or are often exposed to secondhand cigarette smoke, it is important to talk to your cardiologist about ways to reduce your risk of developing hypertension or other cardiovascular diseases.

Nicotine Addiction

Nicotine is one of the most commonly available addictive substances. It is estimated that about one in every two smokers becomes addicted to nicotine. This addiction is a physical and psychological dependence on the drug. When people quit smoking, they may experience withdrawal symptoms, such as cravings, anxiety, irritability, and difficulty concentrating.

Why Your Heart Health Matters

Figure of the heart for health teaching and learning matters

Cardiovascular health is one of the most important aspects of overall health. When your heart is unhealthy, you're at risk for a number of health problems. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States. When you fall under the umbrella of risk factors, your cardiologist may recommend that you take preventative measures to help lower your risk of heart disease. Dr. Bereliani may also recommend that you make changes to your diet and lifestyle. Taking care of your heart is important because when your heart is healthy, you're able to live a longer, healthier life.

Prioritizing Your Health With the Help of a Cardiologist

When it comes to your health, it's important to make sure that you're taking the time to prioritize your well-being. This means that you should be working with a renowned cardiologist like Dr. Bereliani to come up with a plan that will help you stay healthy and protect your heart health. Part of taking care of yourself includes a healthy diet and lifestyle. This means that you should be eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, and you should be avoiding processed foods and sugars. You should also make sure that you're getting enough exercise. This doesn't mean that you have to go to the gym every day. Just try to get moving for at least 30 minutes each day. Seeing your doctor regularly is also important. Here at the Beverly Hills Institute for Cardiology and Preventive Medicine, you'll find an expert cardiologist with in-depth knowledge of functional and orthomolecular medicine. Dr. Bereliani strives to help patients prevent heart disease and identify the risk of any health conditions that could put your heart at risk. Working with the best cardiologist can help you make sure that you're taking the right steps to protect your heart. If you're not sure where to start, reach out to schedule a consultation with Dr. Bereliani today.

Author
Arash Bereliani, M.D., M.S., F.A.C.C. Beverly Hills Institute For Cardiology & Preventive Medicine

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