The average age of coronary heart patients in Malaysia is 59, which is much younger than in developed countries, says Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.
The Deputy Prime Minister said the age range of coronary heart patients in Malaysia were five to six years younger than those in the developed countries.
As heart attacks are the most common heart disease in Malaysia, Dr Wan Azizah hoped the people would take precautions by adopting a healthier lifestyle.
Changing one’s way of life is important, she said when launching the World’s Heart Day celebration by University Malaya Medical Centre yesterday.
Dr Wan Azizah said the risk of suffering a heart attack was closely linked to the person’s lifestyle, as well as whether the person had non-communicable diseases (NCD), such as diabetes and obesity.
Dr Wan Azizah said what was worrying was that there was an increase in NCD cases too.
“As a result, many people have heart diseases and various health complications in the form of other chronic diseases,” she added.
She said the meeting of the Cabinet Committee for Healthy Living Environment, which she chaired last Nov 1, served as a platform to discuss and identify actions to address NCD.
Dr Wan Azizah said among the key policies tabled in the 2019 Budget was to impose an excise tax on sugar-contained drinks.
She said cardiovascular disease remained the main cause of death in hospitals under the Health Ministry, totalling 10,284 or 22.62% of the total death reported in 2017.