February has been American Heart Month since 1964. Heart health is, of course, an important topic all year round, but American Heart Month is a great opportunity to remind ourselves of how serious heart disease is and what we can do to prevent it.
Facts about Heart Health
One woman is killed by heart disease or stroke every 80 seconds. That’s 1/3 of all female deaths each year!
80% of these deaths could have been prevented through better education about heart health.
Lifestyle changes and better medical treatment have begun to lower the rate of death due to heart disease and stroke.
There are about 85.6 million people in the US suffering from heart disease.
6% of Americans have high blood pressure, a leading cause of heart disease.
Looking at these facts about heart health, it’s easy to see how important proper education and preventative treatment are. You CAN take care of your heart to keep it healthy and less prone to heart disease.
Prevent Heart Disease
Here’s what you can do today to prevent heart disease:
Look at your lifestyle and see what you can change. Stop smoking, eat healthier, lose weight if necessary and start exercising.
Avoid eating fat, cholesterol and salt and replace with fiber, fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
Get your whole family involved in a healthier lifestyle. Tell your kids why it’s important to eat healthy and get active. Then change your grocery shopping habits and plan active activities you can all do together. How about a family hike or ice skating session?
Get a physical. Ask your doctor to check your cholesterol, blood pressure and glucose, so you can catch problems before they develop into serious conditions.
Since heavy lifting can be a strain on the heart, make sure you are following protocol when lifting patients and that you rest during your breaks.
Start making these changes now so that when the next American Heart Month rolls around, you’ll already be well on your way to a lifestyle that supports heart health!