February is Heart Month
Heart disease doesn’t happen just to older adults. It is happening to younger adults more and more often. This is partly because the conditions that lead to heart disease are happening at younger ages. February is Heart Month, the perfect time to learn about your risk for heart disease and the steps you need to take now to help your heart.
Heart disease—and the conditions that lead to it—can happen at any age. High rates of obesity and high blood pressure among younger people (ages 35–64) are putting them at risk for heart disease earlier in life. Half of all Americans have at least one of the top three risk factors for heart disease (high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking).
You’re in the driver’s seat when it comes to your heart. Learn how to be heart healthy at any age. Don’t smoke. Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. If you don’t smoke, don’t start. If you do smoke, learn how to quit. Manage conditions. Work with your health care team to manage conditions such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol. This includes taking any medicines you have been prescribed. Learn more about preventing and managing high blood pressure and high cholesterol.Make heart–healthy eating changes. Eat food low in trans–fat, saturated fat, added sugar, and sodium. Try to fill at least half your plate with vegetables and fruits, and aim for low sodium options.
Lifesaving science, which is funded partly by the American Heart Association, helps figure out new ways to lower your blood pressure and keep your heart healthy so you can live your best life. Take a look at these facts — they’re all for you.
Lifesaving Science Tips
Walking at least 20 minutes a day can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. So choose the stairs, not the elevator. Park farther away from the store. Find little ways to step up your steps game.good starting goal is at least 150 minutes a week, but if you don’t want to sweat the numbers, just move more! Find forms of exercise you like and will stick with, and build more opportunities to be active into your routine.
Java Lovers Rejoice
A little pick–me–up may bring down your risk of stroke. Just one cup of coffee a week can make a difference.
Squash High Cholesterol
Adding a serving of acorn squash has nearly 10% of your daily value of fiber, which can reduce cholesterol.
Don’t Hold It
Did you know the stress of having a full bladder may increase your blood pressure? Don’t let holding it in hold you back from heart health.
Go Ahead Hit Snooze
Why count calories when you can count sheep? 7–8 hours of sleep can help you maintain a healthy weight.
Hug It Out For Your Health
Hugs bring people closer, but they can also bring down blood pressure levels in some women. Here’s the perfect reason to give a special lady in your life a hug. (Like you really needed an excuse.)
Source: www.cdc.gov & www.aha.org