February is “Heart Month” so reviewing tips on keeping heart-healthy may prevent or minimize damage from heart attacks (the biggest cause of death in our country) and strokes.
Know the symptoms of heart attacks (nausea, pain or discomfort in chest and arm) and strokes (leg or arm numbness or weakness, slurred speech, dizziness, fatigue) can be a start. Taking action quickly if these suspicious symptoms occur by calling your doctor or going to Urgent Care within 24 hours, can be the difference between life and death or disability.
Know your levels of blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and weight and how they trend from year to year to allow you to see if your risk for vessel disease is increasing, staying the same, or decreasing. Check with your healthcare provider for your recommended levels, as this can vary based on other risk factors.
Eat a heart-healthy diet and stay physically active, checking with your doctor for recommended level of physical activity.
Future blogs will be devoted to the dietary habits and exercise recommendations that can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.