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February is

American Heart Month

Every year, more than 600,000 Americans die from heart disease.

Heart Disease affects all ages, genders, and ethnicities. Risk factors include high cholesterol, high blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, and excessive alcohol consumption.

 

Let us help you learn how to maintain a healthy heart and prevent heart disease below. 

How to Keep Your Heart Healthy

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Consume more Fruits & Veggies

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Fruits and vegetables are a great source for vitamins and minerals, and they are low-calorie and high in dietary fiber. They also contain substances that can help prevent cardiovascular disease. Eating more fruits and vegetables will help you cut back on high calorie foods (meat, cheese, snack foods).

Foods that are high in fat and trans-fat contribute to heart disease, try to avoid these or minimize them in your diet. Consuming foods that are high in fiber and low in saturated fat, trans-fat, and cholesterol can help prevent high cholesterol.

 

Limiting salt in your diet will also lower your blood pressure.

Limiting sugar in your diet will help you keep a low blood sugar level, lessening your chances of developing diabetes.   

Limit smoking & alcohol consumption

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Drinking too much alcohol can raise your blood pressure. If you drink alcohol, try to limit the amount you consume. Heavy alcohol use can lead to heart muscle damage (alcoholic cardiomyopathy) resulting in heart failure. 

Smoking greatly increases your risk for heart disease. Quit smoking to lower your risk of heart disease. Ask your doctor today for ways to help you quit smoking. 

engage in an active lifestyle

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Even minor changes in diet and activity levels can make a world of difference when it comes to your cardiovascular health.  Multiple studies have shown that drinking between 1-2 soft drinks/day increases the risk of heart attacks and death from heart disease up to 40%.  Credible data shows that walking just 20 minutes/day can decrease heart disease by 20-30% in men and women, respectively.  So, put down the sugary beverages and get to moving.  A little can do a lot!

-John Massey, M.D. 

Facts about Heart Health

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