3 February 2015
During February, hearts are everywhere—Valentine’s cards, decorations, and commercials are filled with red hearts and messages of love. But February is about more than just greetings cards; it’s also the American Heart Association’s American Heart Month, a time to show your heart some love. Learn about the risks for heart disease and take action so you and your loved ones can stay heart healthy.
Cardiovascular disease, including high blood pressure and heart disease, are the number one killers of men and women in the United States today.
Understand Your Risk
Cardiovascular disease affects people differently. Men are more than twice as likely as women to die from cardiovascular disease. Race and ethnicity also play a role; African Americans are more likely than any other racial or ethnic group to have high blood pressure and develop heart disease later in life. Having a close relative with heart disease means you are at a higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease too.
Check Your Health
Mark your calendar this February, to not only send love on Valentine’s Day, but also to give yourself a little bit of love, following these tips and information towards your heart health. Schedule a yearly visit with your doctor to test your risk for high blood pressure and diabetes, conditions that can often go unnoticed without a medical check-up. While you’re there, get a blood panel done to check your cholesterol and triglyceride levels, indicators of serious cardiovascular disease.
If your New Year’s resolution was to work towards a healthier lifestyle—and you haven’t done it yet—Heart Month is a great time to get back on track. Use February to kick start a heart healthy routine and incorporate simple daily habits into your lifestyle:
- Diet: Incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your diet in place of processed or fatty foods.
- Exercise: Try to do some physical activity every day. A nightly walk, morning bike ride, or simply taking the stairs more often can help your heart health.
- Stop Smoking: Work with a support group and your doctor to stop smoking and improve your overall health.
- Partner Up: Joining forces with a friend can go a long way in helping you become more heart healthy. Exercise with your buddy, share healthy recipes, and encourage each other to stay on track towards your goals.
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AstraZeneca has been dedicated to addressing cardiovascular disease for over 100 years, and our vision for the future is to continue this legacy of delivering effective patient education and valuable new medicines to patients through scientific research, innovation, and excellence.
AstraZeneca encourages you to consider Heart Month as an opportunity to remind friends and family to encourage one another to keep a healthy heart. Check back on our blog throughout the month, and follow us on Twitter, and Facebook for heart healthy tips and facts.
This February, take the time to care for yourself and stay heart healthy.