Friday, February 3, 2017

Heart Health Month: What You Need to Know

Tiny red hearts juxtaposed against a black background.
Image courtesy of clogsilk at Flickr Creative Commons
Hello, all! In honor of Heart Health Month, I want to share some important statistics and information with you. Before I begin, let me remind you that it’s National Wear Red Day. You might have noticed that #GoRedForWomen is trending on Twitter right now. This is done in effort to raise awareness about women’s heart health.
While heart health is equally as important for men, the public is specifically focused on women right now due to the fact that cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains the number one killer of women in the United States. The problem is so rampant that it kills an estimated one in three American women.
This has to stop. That’s why I’m doing my part to help educate you on what you can do to prevent cardiovascular disease.
The first thing you should know is that cardiovascular disease is preventable. While there are hereditary factors that can significantly increase your risk of developing CVD, the vast majority of CVD cases can be prevented by making healthy lifestyle choices.
According to the World Heart Federation, some of the biggest risk factors for developing heart disease are: smoking, physical inactivity, an unhealthy diet, and excessive consumption of alcohol. Notice that all four of these factors are within your control.
Even if you’ve never experienced any of the symptoms of heart disease, you should still be wary. Heart disease can start developing years before symptoms arise.
This is serious stuff, guys. I hope you don’t think that I’m preaching at you or judging you for your lifestyle choices. I only write about this because it is an issue that’s dear to my heart.
A couple of years ago, my grandmother passed away from CVD at the age of 72. She was a long-term smoker, and doctors believe that smoking was the main cause of her condition.
I would have killed to have her around even if just for a few years longer. Nobody should lose a loved one due to a disease that is largely preventable. So please, please, please take this blog post seriously and take good care of your body.