February is National Heart Health Month.  

Here is information on Heart Disease, what it is and how to reduce your chance of getting it:

  1. Heart Disease (including Coronary Heart disease, Hypertension and Stroke) is the #1 killer in the U.S. It is also a major cause of disability.
  • Cardiovascular disease, listed as the underlying cause of death, accounts for nearly 801,000 deaths in the US. That’s about 1 of every 3 deaths in the US.
  • About 2,200 Americans die of cardiovascular disease each day, an average of 1 death every 40 seconds.
  • Cardiovascular diseases claim more lives each year than all forms of cancer.
  1. Stroke
  • Someone in the US has a stroke about once every 40 seconds.
  • Stroke accounts for 1 of every 20 deaths in the US.
  • Stroke kills someone in the US about every 4 minutes.
  • Stroke is a leading cause of serious long-term disability in the US

 Leading risk factors for Heart Disease:

  • Smoking – responsible for 5 million deaths annually
  • Physical Inactivity
  • Poor Nutrition –
  • Overweight/Obesity
  • Cholesterol – you want low levels (less than 100) of the LDL (bad kind) and higher levels (60 and above) of HDL (good kind). You want your Total Cholesterol Levels to be less than 200mg/dL.
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Diabetes

  1. How to reduce the risk of death from Heart Disease:
  • Exercise – at least 30 minutes of cardio exercise daily, including walking, running, swimming, weight lifting.
  • Create healthy eating habits:
  • Cut the salt
  • Stop Smoking – see your physician for smoking cessation tools
  • eat whole grains,
  • 4-5 servings of vegetables a day,
  • eat fresh fruit
  • eat lean meats and fish
  • cut back on fats and oils
  • cut back on sweets/sugary foods