Looking after your heart is important. We have produced six short videos to support you to improve your diet, take some exercise and stop smoking so you can take control of your health, well-being and look after your heart.
Heart disease is the number one killer in the UK. Living with HIV can increase the risk of heart disease both due to the effect of the virus (through inflammation) and as a side effect of some HIV treatments. Current recommendations are to start treatment early to reduce inflammatory effects and avoid other serious illnesses from untreated HIV.
Risk is higher in some ethnic groups, amongst men, in people with a family history
of heart disease and as we get older. These things cannot be changed but there
are other risk factors (our lifestyles) that we can change to reduce the risk
of heart disease. The information in these videos is presented to help you to
make positive changes to support your heart health.
Stopping smoking, improving diet and exercising are especially
important for people living with HIV long-term.
Smoking, being overweight (especially around the belly), eating a high fat diet, heavy
alcohol consumption, using recreational drugs (particularly cocaine and
amphetamines) and a lack of exercise can all increase risk of developing heart
Your health care team should assess your risk of heart disease annually as part of
HIV care. This will include blood tests for cholesterol (a fat in the blood),
blood pressure, weight measurement and details of your family history. The
assessment may help you decide on actions you can take to reduce your risk; the
videos may be a good starting point. More support is available in person via
the Brunswick Centre.
Along with the videos below you may find these links useful too:
We also run activities to support your well-being. Keep an eye on our news, newsletter and events pages for up to date information.
This project was made possible by funding from the Big Lottery Fund.