When was the last time you thought about your heart? If you’re in your 20s or 30s, chances are that you’ve only ever given it a thought when you’re working out or figuring out how to beat your personal best in the next run! But your heart is beating every second of your life, weathering your highs and lows, helping you do everything you possibly can. And it needs care and attention, regardless of your age. According to the World Health Organization, cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are globally the leading cause of mortality, claiming approximately 17.9 million lives each year. Studies show that the heart disease rate among Indians is twice that of western countries— we account for 60% of the world’s heart disease cases, with Indian people experiencing CVDs at an earlier age as compared to the rest of the world. While genetic risk factors could be one way to explain this glaring discrepancy, life events and lifestyle related factors, too, could be part of the cause. High cortisol levels from long-term stress can result in high blood cholesterol and sugar, triglycerides, and hypertension, which are common risk factors for heart disease. Sleep deprivation, too, which is becoming increasingly common, is linked to cardiometabolic disorders.