American Heart Month: A time to focus on your Heart Health
February is American Heart Month and there is no better time to take action to protect yourself against heart disease.
Take Steps to Become Heart Healthy
UHS joins hospitals, medical centers and healthcare systems around the country to observe the month, with the aim of raising public awareness about heart conditions. Whether it’s wearing red on Wear Red Day early in the month or encouraging people to talk with their doctors about hearth health as the month progresses, increased awareness is the goal.
A heart attack strikes someone in the United States about every 40 seconds. It occurs when the blood flow that brings oxygen to the heart muscle is severely reduced or cut off completely. This happens because the arteries that supply the heart with blood can slowly narrow from a build-up of fat, cholesterol or plaque.
To do all that you can to prevent an attack, medical experts at UHS and the American Heart Association recommend the following:
- Schedule an appointment with your healthcare provider to learn your personal risk for heart disease.
- If you smoke, quit (and if you don't smoke, don't start). Within just one year of quitting, you’ll cut your risk of coronary heart disease by 50 percent.
- Start an exercise program. Walking just 30 minutes a day can lower your risk for heart attack and stroke.
- Modify your family’s diet if needed. Check out healthy cooking and eating tips on the AHA’s website.