Simple Steps To Prevent Heart Disease

photography: everyday health
words by: the American Heart
and Stroke Association

 

Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of all Americans and the risks are even high for African- Americans. 

The good news is that everyone can improve their odds of preventing and beating cardiovascular diseases by understanding the risks and taking simple steps to address them. High blood pressure and obesity are the most common conditions that increase the risk of heart disease. The American Heart Association recommends that you work with your medical professional on your specific risk factors and the things that you can do to take care of your personal health. 

HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
45% of African American men have high blood pressure. High blood pressure increases your risk of heart disease and stroke. If can cause permanent damage before you even notice any symptoms. Your healthcare provider can help you find the right medication and offer impactful lifestyle changes can have an even BIGGER impact. Check your blood pressure regularly and notify your doctor of changes. 

OBESITY
69% of African American men are overweight or obese. Start by focusing on your diet throughout the day, not just on your diet throughout the day, not just during your meal time. Snacks can add hundreds of calories to your diet. Other suggestions include eliminating sugary drinks, choosing lean meats, and controlling meal portions. 

When it comes to high blood pressure and obesity, regular exercise plays a key role in strengthening the cardiovascular system, and burning extra calories. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day, which is enough to increase the heart rate up. 

 

CAN YOU IDENTIFY A HEART ATTACK?

Is it a heart attack or just heartburn? is the pain in your arm from heavy lifting or is it something more serious? Would you know if you were having a heart attack? Unfortunately, many people don't know the symptoms of a heart attack. 

Most heart attacks begin with mild symptoms that slowly escalate, although some are sharp and sudden. Learn to recognize what happens to your body when you experience a heart attack. It could save your life or the life of someone you love. 

CHEST PAIN

Most heart attacks begin with chest pain or discomfort that lasts more than a few minutes, goes away and returns. You may feel pressure, pain, fullness or squeezing in your chest. 

PAIN OR DISCOMFORT IN OTHER AREAS OF THE BODY

You may feel discomfort in your jaw, back, neck, stomach or in one or both arms. 

SHORTNESS OF BREATH

You may feel like you can't get enough oxygen. This may occur with or without chest pain. 

 

proud sponsor