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February 3, 2023

February is American Heart Month, an observance focused on raising awareness and improving cardiovascular health, as well as better understanding the factors that put you at risk for heart disease. “Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men, women, and people of most racial and ethnic groups in the United States (“Heart Disease Facts”, 2022). The good news? You can begin taking steps to improve your heart health today!  

  1. Take care of your medical conditions. Take your medications as prescribed, and routinely get your blood pressure and cholesterol checked. Check your blood sugar levels frequently if you have diabetes. 
  1. Consume heart-healthy food and drinks. Reduce your intake of trans-fat-containing meals, such as pastries and fried foods, as well as sweets. Instead, choose foods low in sodium and salt. Change sugary drinks for water to reduce your calorie intake. Limit your alcohol intake. 
  1. Be aware of the symptoms of a heart attack, which include: 
  • Pain in the chest or discomfort. 
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. 
  • Breaking out in a cold sweat. 
  • Feeling weak, faint, or lightheaded. 
  • Pain or discomfort in the shoulders. 
  • Pain or discomfort in the back, jaw or neck. 

If you are experiencing symptoms of a heart attack, call 911 immediately. 

  1. Get Active! The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends adults get 150 minutes or more of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise each week, along with at least two days per week of muscle-building exercises (2022). 
  1. Quit Smoking. Smoking can raise your risk for cancer, lung disease, and other smoking-related ailments in addition to heart problems. 

Haven’t had a recent check-up or experienced symptoms? Call (509) 935-6004 to schedule an appointment with NEW Health today. 

Sources 

Heart Disease Facts. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022, October 14). Retrieved January 20, 2023, from https://www.cdc.gov/heartdisease/facts.htm 

Physical Activity Prevents Chronic Disease. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, May 14). Retrieved January 20, 2023, from https://www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/resources/infographic/physical-activity.htm