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Health atlas reveals heart disease shock

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: April 25, 2014

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PEOPLE living in Burton and South Derbyshire are at an increased risk of developing heart disease, figures have shown.

A new online map revealed that the region was among the UK’s heart disease hotspots, while also showing there was an above average chance of developing kidney disease.

The health atlas, created by experts at Imperial College London, ranked people across the country in terms of the likelihood of developing 14 diseases.

For most of the ailments, which included lung cancer and skin cancer, people in the region were deemed to be at a below average risk, but for heart and kidney disease it was the opposite.

According to the figures, Branston and Tutbury and Outwoods were the main places of concern in the Burton area, while Church Gresley and Repton were the hotspots in South Derbyshire.

Lifestyle factors, such as smoking, as well as environmental issues like air pollution were attributed as being main reasons for parts of the country that performed worst.

Burton was granted heart town status by the British Heart Foundation two years ago in the hope of bringing the community together through fund-raising and volunteering in an attempt to beat heart disease, which is the UK’s biggest killer.

Experts say the key to avoiding the illness is eating a healthy and balanced diet and keeping physically active.

Rob Stevenson, a former soldier who turned his attention to delivering the British Heart Foundation’s Heartstart course at Burton and South Derbyshire College, said he was surprised the area was among the UK hotspots.

He said: “It is a bit surprising. I didn’t realise Burton had that statistic next to it. I know the British Heart Foundation and the ambulance service has been into Burton to try and help but perhaps the uptake hasn’t been as good as they would have liked.

“It’s all about having a balanced diet and getting enough exercise. But there also has to be better knowledge, more awareness.”

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