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Let’s Keep Our Hearts Healthy

Posted Feb 22 2013 6:42am

Not only is today Friday – TGIF – today is the 3rd annual blog your heart out day (and my first time participating).

Source: nhlbi.nih.gov via Springfield Clinic on Pinterest

Things you might not know about women and heart disease:

  • The #1 killer of women is HEART DISEASE
  • Heart disease kills about 1 woman every minute, or approximately 450,000 women each year
  • More women die of heart disease than the next five causes of death combined, including all forms of cancer
  • 90% of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease
  • 80% of cardiac events in women may be prevented by making the right choices involving diet, exercise and abstinence from smoking

That fourth statement is pretty strong. 90% of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease. I know I am included in that group. I am overweight and have a family history of heart problems. At my age, this is something I definitely have to think about. Everyone should click and join the Go Red for Women movement.

Source: heart.org via Colleen on Pinterest

Life’s Simple 7 was designed by the American Heart Association with the goal of educating the public about heart disease. They offer these seven simple steps to help people (men and women) live a long and productive healthy life. Note: All photos below from The Heart Truth on Facebook.

1. Get Active – Do at least 150 minutes of activity per week. This is approximately 20 minutes every day of the week or 30 minutes five days per week. This can include something as simple as WALKING. You know how I feel about walking – DO IT.

Heart Disease Physical Activity

2. Eat Better – Eat a heart healthy diet. More fruits and veggies. Less sugar and junk.

3. Lose Weight – Bring your BMI below 25.

Heart Disease Overweight

4. Stop Smoking – Stop NOW and if you don’t smoke, don’t start.

Heart Disease Stop Smoking

5. Control Cholesterol – Schedule a screening, talk to your doctor, eat a heart healthy diet.

Heart Disease Cholesterol

6. Manage Blood Pressure – Schedule a screening, talk to your doctor, eat a heart healthy diet.

Heart Disease Blood Pressure

7. Reduce Blood Sugar – Schedule a screening, talk to your doctor, eat a heart healthy diet.

There is an online assessment which is quick and easy. I received an 8.5 out of a possible 10. What areas do I need to work on? Numbers 2 and 3 – eat better and lose weight. Obviously those are not surprising to me. Please take a minute to read their site, find out your score, and make a plan. Heart disease can affect anyone – all ages, races, sexes.

This is a very timely post as I am actually heading to meet my new doctor and get a physical this morning. While I thought I had a physical last year, turns out I did not. Time to have my cholesterol checked again, make sure my blood pressure is under control, and check my sugar levels.

Part of keeping our hearts healthy is knowing the signs of a heart attack. Do you know that women’s heart attack symptoms are different from men’s?

* Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest. It lasts more than a few minutes, or goes away and comes back.
* Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
* Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
* Other signs such as breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
* As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.

If you have any of these signs, don’t wait more than five minutes before calling for help. Call 9-1-1 and get to a hospital right away.

What are you doing to keep your heart healthy? Which areas do you need to concentrate on?

TGIF! Keep your heart healthy!

1-glenneth-web

Original article: Let’s Keep Our Hearts Healthy

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