February is American Heart Month

Dr. Rhett’s Women’s Center wants to help you prevent heart disease. This month take some time to learn your risks for heart disease and stroke to show those you love that you care. Today, cardiovascular disease (CVD) continues to be the number 1 killer of both men and women in the United States.

Know the Facts:
• Men are more than twice as likely to die from preventable CVD as women.
• Having a close relative with heart disease increases your risk for CVD.
• Having diabetes increases your risk for heart disease.
• Death rates due to heart disease are higher in the South and lower in the West.
• Race and ethnicity affect your risk. African Americans are at greater risk.
• Many CVD deaths can be prevented through healthier lifestyle habits.

Prevention is Key:

• Get a checkup at least once a year to check for conditions that put you at risk, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity and diabetes.
• Eat a heart healthy diet. Strive for at least 5 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables daily. Choose foods low in saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol, sodium and high in fiber. Visit ChooseMyPlate.gov for guidelines.
• Maintain a healthy weight. If your BMI is greater than 25 lose weight by – Eating fewer calories than your body needs and exercise more.
• Exercise regularly. Strive for 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity.
• Don’t smoke and if you drink alcohol do so in moderation.